The Forgotten (Part 6): The Pillars of Peace Propagators, from Yajnavalkya in Antiquity to Johan Galtung Today


Prof Hoosen Vawda – TRANSCEND Media Service

Eradicating the Global Darkness During this Spiritual Season of Saturnalia

“Yajnavalkya and Johan Galtung have lived millennia apart but their discourses on ethical lifestyle coupled with Peace Propagation are available and applicable to the miscreant humanity and its wickedness, in all its glory, in the 21st century.” [1]

Cain Killing Abel: The First Wickedness of Humanity causing Peace Disruption, as narrated in the Holy Scriptures of the Abrahamic Faiths
Artist: Albrecht Dürer: Circa 1511 (German, 1471–1528)
Photo Credit: Yale University: Bequest of Lydia Evans Tunnard

The Beginning: The First Murder in Humanity and Resultant Peace Disruption

23 Dec 2023 – This paper, Part 6, in the series on the “Forgotten”,[2],[3],[4],[5],[6],[7] highlights the lives and philosophies of two great giants of Peace Propagation: firstly, Rishi Yajnavalkya, a Hindu sage[8] who most likely lived between the 8th and 7th century BCE in Videha[9], in Ancient Bharat[10].  Yajnavalkya, a Vedic scholar[11], is widely regarded as the first philosopher in recorded history who propagated principles of righteous living, which resulted in societal, sustainable peace. The second giant is Professor Johan Galtung[12], a contemporary Polymath and Peace Propagator who has presented, to the modern world, several millennia apart, from Yajnavalkya, his Theories of Peace. The paper presents the peace viewpoints and their commonality, in terms of the present period of the Gregorian calendar, around the 22nd of December, not only characterised by the winter solstice in the northern hemisphere and summer solstice in the southern hemisphere, but also the holiday season, as well as the birth of the messiah, Jesus, the Christ, a warner to humanity to live a just, honest and righteous lifestyle, as prescribed in the holy scriptures of the collective Abrahamic faiths [13]of Judaism , Christianity and Islam.


The present season of celebration, of a festive as well as a spiritual nature has its origins in Ancient Rome, when Saturnalia[14] was celebrated and later in the Abrahamic faiths as the period of the birth of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of humankind[15] by offering humanity, eternal peace, as Christmas.  In antiquity, in Rome, this period, Saturnalia[16], was marked by the Feast of Saturnalia, which was typified by frivolity, immorality, drunken debauchery and paganistic customs, as well as behavioural patterns, which would be shunned upon, in the present-day code of conduct, ethics and standards of morality, although these are often violated in office parties, where liquor flows freely and disinhibited behaviour of all humanoid participants, is the norm. This was described by the Latin poet, Gaius Valerius Catullus[17], as “the best of days”[18]  therefore the paper will also illustrate the inter-connectedness of the three aforementioned peace propagators in relation to sustainable peace in the 21st century, where such discourses are urgently and critical needed, as well as most relevant. It is also necessary to highlight the first murder in humanity, as narrated in the collective holy scriptures of the Abrahamic faiths, the act of first wickedness, the killing of Abel by Cain[19] in the religious context.  This symbolic act has been repeatedly practised by humanity, since the evolution of primitive human on planet Earth and continues unabated with mass ongoing genocide, as the author pens this paper in Gaza. Presently, with the global belligerence, the ethnic cleansing and genocidal killings by Israel of the Palestinians, in the recent wave of recurrent attacks,  solely with the aim of eradicating the Palestinians completely from their ancestral land, beginning on the 07th October.[20] This was a well-orchestrated plan, engineered by the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, resulting in the deaths of over 20,000 civilian, Palestinians.[21]  Humanity stands on a precipice. The final judgment draws near, when all the works of evil will be destroyed, and the world made new. Wickedness has been present since the beginning of human history but is now more visible than ever.  The question, which urgently needs to be raised is why is civilisation being hastened toward this annihilation?


This peace disruption is typified by death, destruction and the suffering of certain targeted ethnic groups, in a psycho-social manner and is analogous to the physical human ethnic cleansing and physical genocide which is currently, being experienced by the Gazains, the Kashmiris, the Rohingyas, the Uyghurs and the Syrians in different regions of the politico-physical world, in the 21st century, generated by the different oppressive political regimes. These multiple regional crusades, driven by nationalistic fervour and the inherent ethos of ethnophobia, demonstrated by these ruthless governments, cause an enormous degree of Peace Disturbance[22], [23] within these marginalised, minority communities.


Enter “The Peace Propagators”, with their philosophies, as Bastions of Sustainable Peace: Who are these mortals?[24]

While the author has written extensively about numerous “Peace Propagators” in the past, also published in this journal [25],[26],[27],[28],[29],[30],[31],[32],[33],[34],[35],[36],[37],[38],[39],[40],[41],[42],[43]this publication, highlights two special individuals. They are:

The Two Giants of Peace Propagation millennia apart, engaged in their respective tasks.
Top Photo: Yajnavalkya lecturing and explaining the Vedic principles of righteous living to King Janaka in Vedeha, surrounded by his court.
Bottom Photo: Professor Johan Galtung lecturing to his class in 1958, as the youngest tenured professor, where most of his students were older than the polymath.

The Great Sage and Indian Rishi, Yajnavalkya

Life of Sage Yajnavalkya:

Sage Yajnavalkya is a prominent figure in ancient Indian philosophy, particularly associated with the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad[44]. Born to Devarata and Suni, Yajnavalkya was known for his deep wisdom and spiritual insights. He gained prominence as a teacher and a philosopher, contributing significantly to the Vedic tradition.

One of the defining moments in Yajnavalkya’s life is his participation in the court of King Janaka, where he engages in a philosophical debate. During this assembly, he declares his intention to renounce the worldly life and seeks permission to lead a life of asceticism in pursuit of higher knowledge. Yajnavalkya’s renunciation signifies his commitment to spiritual truth over material possessions.

Philosophical Teachings:

  1. Renunciation and Detachment: Yajnavalkya’s renunciation emphasizes the importance of detachment from material possessions and a focus on spiritual growth. In the contemporary context, where materialism often dominates, his teachings encourage individuals to seek fulfillment beyond material wealth.
  2. Inner Exploration and Self-Realization: Yajnavalkya’s dialogues in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad delve into the nature of the self (Atman) and the ultimate reality (Brahman). His teachings highlight the importance of self-realization through inner exploration, meditation, and understanding the eternal truths that go beyond the transient nature of the external world.
  3. Ethical Living: The sage emphasizes the significance of ethical conduct and righteous living. In a world marked by moral dilemmas and challenges, Yajnavalkya’s teachings serve as a guide for individuals to navigate life with integrity and compassion.
  4. Transcending Dualities: Yajnavalkya’s discussions often revolve around transcending dualities and realizing the unity of existence. In a world marked by divisions and conflicts, his teachings encourage individuals to see beyond superficial differences and recognize the underlying oneness that connects all of humanity.
  5. Knowledge and Wisdom: Yajnavalkya is revered for his deep knowledge and wisdom. His teachings stress the importance of true knowledge that goes beyond mere intellectual understanding. In the 21st century, where information is abundant, his teachings prompt individuals to seek profound wisdom that leads to spiritual growth and understanding.

Relevance in the 21st Century:

  1. Spiritual Well-being: Yajnavalkya’s emphasis on spiritual well-being is particularly relevant today, as many individuals grapple with the challenges of modern life. His teachings offer a pathway to finding inner peace and contentment amidst the chaos of the world.
  2. Environmental Consciousness: Yajnavalkya’s detachment from material possessions aligns with the growing awareness of environmental sustainability. His teachings encourage a more mindful and sustainable approach to consumption, emphasizing the interconnectedness of all living beings.
  3. Unity in Diversity: Yajnavalkya’s teachings on transcending dualities and recognizing the unity of existence are crucial in a world marked by cultural, religious, and social diversity. His philosophy promotes inclusivity and understanding across various perspectives.
  4. Ethical Leadership: Yajnavalkya’s emphasis on ethical living extends to leadership principles. In a world facing numerous global challenges, his teachings can guide leaders to make decisions grounded in ethical considerations for the greater good.

Hence, Sage, Rishi Yajnavalkya’s life and teachings offer timeless wisdom that transcends cultural and temporal boundaries. His insights into the nature of the self, ethical living, and the pursuit of spiritual truth provide valuable guidance for individuals navigating the complexities of the 21st century. Sage Yajnavalkya is associated with ancient Indian history and is believed to have lived during the Vedic period, which spans roughly from 1500 BCE to 500 BCE. It is challenging to pinpoint specific historical dates for figures from this era due to the limited historical records available.

Yajnavalkya is prominently featured in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, one of the oldest Upanishads, which is part of the Yajurveda. The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad contains philosophical discussions between Yajnavalkya and other sages, including his wife Maitreyi.

Regarding the patronage of a king, Yajnavalkya is famously associated with King Janaka, who was a renowned ruler during that time. King Janaka is mentioned in various ancient Indian texts, and his court is depicted as a center of intellectual and philosophical discussions. Yajnavalkya’s dialogue with King Janaka is a key episode in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, where the sage engages in a philosophical discourse, and it is during this assembly that Yajnavalkya expresses his intention to renounce the worldly life.  While the exact historical details may be elusive, the stories and teachings associated with Yajnavalkya are significant within the broader context of Vedic literature and philosophy. The focus is often on the spiritual and philosophical insights conveyed in these ancient texts rather than precise historical timelines.  Sage Yajnavalkya is not portrayed as being born with innate wisdom; rather, he is depicted as a learned and wise individual who acquired knowledge through education, contemplation, and spiritual practices. In the ancient Vedic tradition, wisdom was typically passed down through a system of teacher-student relationships known as the guru-shishya parampara.  The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, which features Yajnavalkya prominently, does not provide explicit details about his early education or the identity of his teachers. However, it is within this Upanishad that Yajnavalkya engages in profound philosophical discussions with other sages, indicating that he had acquired significant knowledge and wisdom through his studies and contemplation.  The emphasis in Vedic tradition is on the transmission of knowledge from teacher (guru) to student (shishya) in a direct, personal manner. Students would live with their teachers, serving and learning from them, imbibing not just intellectual knowledge but also the spiritual and ethical dimensions of life.  While the specific details of Yajnavalkya’s education are not explicitly mentioned, the Upanishads often highlight the importance of inner realization and direct experience of spiritual truths. Yajnavalkya’s wisdom is attributed to his deep contemplation, adherence to ethical principles, and his quest for higher knowledge, which ultimately led him to profound spiritual insights.  Yajnavalkya is as a sage who, through dedication to learning, philosophical inquiry, and spiritual practice, attained a high level of wisdom and understanding of the deeper truths of existence. His teachings, as recorded in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, showcase the culmination of his spiritual journey and the insights he gained along the way.


Vedic in Ancient Terms: The term “Vedic” refers to the cultural, religious, and philosophical traditions associated with the Vedas, a collection of ancient sacred texts in Hinduism. The Vedas, composed in Sanskrit, are the oldest scriptures of Hinduism and are divided into four main collections: Rigveda, Samaveda, Yajurveda, and Atharvaveda. These texts contain hymns, rituals, prayers, and philosophical discussions.

In ancient terms, the Vedic period is roughly dated from 1500 BCE to 500 BCE. During this period, the Indo-Aryans composed and transmitted the Vedas orally, and later they were compiled in written form. The Vedic traditions encompassed religious rituals, sacrificial ceremonies, and philosophical reflections, and they played a foundational role in shaping the religious and cultural landscape of ancient India.

Applicability and Impact in Contemporary Human Life:

  1. Spiritual Wisdom: The Vedas, particularly the philosophical portions known as the Upanishads, contain profound insights into the nature of reality, the self, and the ultimate truth (Brahman). The spiritual wisdom found in the Vedas remains relevant for individuals seeking deeper meaning and purpose in life.
  2. Yoga and Meditation: The Vedic tradition laid the groundwork for various yogic practices and meditation techniques. In the contemporary context, millions around the world practice yoga and meditation as a means to enhance physical and mental well-being. The principles of mindfulness and self-awareness found in Vedic philosophy are integral to these practices.
  3. Ethical Living: The Vedas emphasize dharma, which encompasses moral and ethical duties. The principles of righteous living and ethical conduct found in Vedic teachings remain applicable in guiding individuals to lead a virtuous life and contribute positively to society.
  4. Cultural Heritage: The Vedic period significantly influenced the cultural heritage of India. Many festivals, rituals, and traditions have their roots in Vedic practices. Understanding and preserving this cultural heritage fosters a sense of identity and continuity for communities.
  5. Philosophical Inquiry: The Vedic tradition encourages philosophical inquiry and contemplation on fundamental questions about existence, consciousness, and the nature of reality. In the contemporary world, where diverse philosophical perspectives coexist, the Vedic tradition provides a historical foundation for exploring these questions.
  6. Environmental Consciousness: Vedic rituals often involved a deep connection with nature and recognized the importance of environmental sustainability. The contemporary relevance of these ecological principles aligns with the global emphasis on environmental conservation and sustainability.
  7. Interconnectedness and Unity: Vedic philosophy emphasizes the interconnectedness of all living beings and the underlying unity of existence. In an era marked by diversity and globalization, these teachings promote a sense of unity and understanding across cultural, religious, and geographical boundaries.

While the Vedic traditions originated in a specific historical and cultural context, their teachings continue to resonate with individuals seeking spiritual growth, ethical guidance, and a deeper understanding of the human experience in the contemporary world. The adaptability and enduring relevance of Vedic principles highlight their impact on shaping diverse aspects of human life.


The Upanishads in Hinduism

The Upanishads are a collection of ancient Indian philosophical texts that form the basis of Vedanta, one of the six orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy. The word “Upanishad” is derived from the Sanskrit words “upa” (near), “ni” (down), and “shad” (to sit), suggesting sitting down near a teacher to receive esoteric knowledge.

Here are some key aspects of the Upanishads:

  1. Philosophical and Mystical Texts: The Upanishads are considered the culmination of Vedic thought and are primarily concerned with the nature of reality, the self (Atman), and the ultimate reality (Brahman). They delve into metaphysical and mystical aspects of existence and aim to provide insights into the nature of the self and the universe.
  2. Spiritual Teachings: The Upanishads explore profound spiritual concepts and insights through dialogues between teachers (gurus) and students (shishyas). These dialogues often take the form of questions and answers, where seekers inquire about the nature of reality, the purpose of life, and the path to spiritual realization.
  3. Number and Classification: There are over 100 Upanishads, but the core philosophical teachings are found in a smaller number, around 10 to 13, which are considered the principal Upanishads. Each of these Upanishads is associated with a particular Vedic school or tradition.
  4. Teachings on Brahman and Atman: A central theme in the Upanishads is the identity between the individual self (Atman) and the ultimate reality (Brahman). They assert that realizing this identity leads to liberation (moksha) from the cycle of birth and death (samsara).
  5. Yogic and Meditative Practices: Some Upanishads discuss various forms of yoga and meditation as means to attain higher states of consciousness and spiritual realization. They provide insights into the practice of meditation, contemplation, and self-discipline.
  6. Influence on Vedanta Philosophy: Vedanta, one of the six orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy, draws heavily from the Upanishads. Vedanta literally means “the end of the Vedas,” signifying that it represents the culmination and essence of Vedic thought. It includes various philosophical traditions, such as Advaita (non-dualism), Dvaita (dualism), and Vishishtadvaita (qualified non-dualism).
  7. Universal Themes: While the Upanishads are rooted in the Hindu tradition, their philosophical themes are often considered universal. They explore questions about the nature of reality, the self, and the transcendent that resonate with seekers of wisdom across different cultures and religions.

The Upanishads are revered as a source of profound spiritual and philosophical knowledge and continue to be studied and respected not only within Hinduism but also by scholars and spiritual seekers worldwide. They have had a significant impact on the development of Indian philosophy and continue to inspire those on the quest for spiritual understanding.  The Upanishads were not written by a single author or a group of authors. Instead, they are considered a product of the collective wisdom of ancient Indian sages and seers. The origins of the Upanishads are difficult to trace precisely, but they are generally thought to have been composed over a period spanning from around 800 BCE to 200 BCE.

The Upanishads were traditionally transmitted orally from teacher (guru) to student (shishya) in a guru-shishya parampara, or teacher-disciple tradition. The teachings were considered esoteric and were imparted in a one-on-one or small group setting. As a result, the Upanishads emerged as a body of knowledge reflecting the spiritual and philosophical insights of various sages across different regions of ancient India.

Regarding their equivalence to Abrahamic religious scriptures, there are both similarities and differences:


  1. Spiritual and Moral Guidance: Like the Abrahamic scriptures (such as the Bible, Torah, and Quran), the Upanishads offer spiritual guidance and insights into the nature of existence, morality, and the path to a meaningful life.
  2. Focus on Ultimate Reality: The Upanishads, similar to the mystical traditions within Abrahamic religions, delve into the nature of the ultimate reality (Brahman in Hinduism) and the individual’s relationship with it.


  1. Authorship and Transmission: The Upanishads lack a single, identifiable authorship and were transmitted orally before being recorded in written form. In contrast, the Abrahamic scriptures are often associated with specific prophets or religious figures who are believed to have received divine revelations.
  2. Multiplicity of Texts: The Upanishads are a diverse collection with multiple texts, each expressing different philosophical viewpoints. Abrahamic scriptures are generally considered single, unified texts with a consistent theological message.
  3. Theological Concepts: The theological concepts, cosmology, and moral teachings in the Upanishads are distinct from those found in Abrahamic scriptures. Hinduism, which encompasses the Upanishads, has a complex and diverse theological landscape, including concepts of reincarnation and karma.

While both the Upanishads and the Abrahamic scriptures share common themes related to spirituality and ethical living, they are products of different cultural, historical, and theological contexts. Each tradition has its unique contributions to the global tapestry of religious and philosophical thought. Understanding these differences and appreciating the unique insights of each tradition is important for fostering intercultural understanding and dialogue.


Inter-Hindu Scriptural Relationships:

  • The Upanishads and the Vedas preceded both the Mahabharata and the Ramayana in terms of chronology.
  • The Mahabharata and the Ramayana are epic narratives that incorporate and expand upon the moral and philosophical teachings found in the Upanishads.
  • While the Upanishads primarily focus on metaphysical and spiritual topics, the Mahabharata and the Ramayana integrate these teachings into epic tales that illustrate moral and ethical principles in action.

In summary, the Upanishads laid the foundation for philosophical and spiritual exploration in Hinduism. The Mahabharata and the Ramayana, while incorporating elements of the Upanishadic thought, present these teachings in the context of epic narratives that emphasize moral conduct, duty, and the challenges of human life. The Bhagavad Gita, as part of the Mahabharata, serves as a key scripture offering profound philosophical guidance in the midst of ethical dilemmas. Together, these texts contribute to the rich tapestry of Hindu philosophy, spirituality, and ethics


In Hinduism, both Dharma and Karma are fundamental concepts that play significant roles in guiding ethical behaviour and understanding the consequences of actions. Let’s explore each concept:


    • Definition: Dharma is a multifaceted concept in Hinduism that encompasses various meanings, including righteousness, duty, law, morality, and order. It refers to the ethical and moral duties and responsibilities that individuals are expected to uphold in their lives.
    • Role: Dharma provides a framework for righteous living and harmonious societal order. It guides individuals in making morally sound decisions based on principles that contribute to the well-being of the individual and society.
    • Types of Dharma:
      • Sva-dharma: One’s own duty or personal duty based on one’s role in life (as a student, householder, hermit, or ascetic).
      • Sama-dharma: Duties common to all individuals, regardless of their specific roles.
      • Varna Dharma: Duties based on one’s caste or social class.
      • Ashrama Dharma: Duties based on one’s stage in life (student, householder, hermit, or ascetic).
  1. Karma[46]:
    • Definition: Karma refers to the law of cause and effect, asserting that every action has consequences. The term “karma” means action or deed, and the concept suggests that the quality of one’s actions influences the nature of their future experiences.
    • Role: Karma is a central concept in Hindu philosophy and is intricately connected to the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth (samsara). The idea is that individuals accumulate karma (both positive and negative) through their actions, and this karma influences their future circumstances and experiences.
    • Types of Karma:
      • Sanchita Karma: The accumulated karma from all past actions.
      • Prarabdha Karma: The portion of accumulated karma that is currently being experienced in the present life.
      • Agami Karma: New karma created in the current life that will contribute to future experiences.
    • Purification and Liberation: The ultimate goal is to purify one’s karma through righteous living, selfless actions, and spiritual practices, leading to liberation (moksha) from the cycle of birth and death.

In summary, Dharma guides individuals in adhering to righteous and moral conduct, emphasizing the fulfillment of duties and responsibilities. Karma, on the other hand, is the law of cause and effect, suggesting that individuals are responsible for the consequences of their actions, and the quality of these actions influences their future experiences in the cycle of samsara. Together, Dharma and Karma provide a comprehensive framework for ethical living and spiritual growth in Hinduism.  The principles of Dharma guide individuals to engage in righteous and moral actions, fulfilling their duties and responsibilities in accordance with ethical principles. The idea is that living in alignment with Dharma leads to positive and virtuous consequences, while going against Dharma can result in negative repercussions.

In the context of Karma:

  1. Good Actions (Dharmic Actions):
    • Engaging in virtuous, righteous, and selfless actions aligns with Dharma.
    • Such actions contribute to positive karma, which is believed to lead to favorable consequences in the present life or future lives.
  2. Bad Actions (Adharmic Actions):
    • Going against moral and ethical principles is considered adharma.
    • Adharmic actions contribute to negative karma, which is believed to lead to unfavourable consequences in the present life or future lives.

The understanding is that individuals are responsible for the consequences of their actions, and the quality of those actions influences their future experiences in the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth (samsara). The ultimate goal is to purify one’s karma through righteous living, selfless actions, and spiritual practices, ultimately leading to liberation (moksha) from the cycle of samsara.

While this perspective on Dharma and Karma is rooted in Hindu philosophy, it’s essential to note that interpretations and beliefs may vary among different schools of Hindu thought. Additionally, these concepts provide a framework for ethical living and spiritual growth and are not necessarily presented as a system of reward and punishment but rather as a guide to living a life of virtue and righteousness.


“Moral Conduct” and “Ethical Conduct”:

  1. Moral Conduct:
    • Definition: Moral conduct refers to the set of principles, values, and standards that guide individuals or communities in determining what is right or wrong. Morality often involves considerations of justice, fairness, and the well-being of others. It is influenced by cultural, religious, and societal norms that shape the understanding of what is morally acceptable behaviour.
    • Basis: Moral conduct is often grounded in beliefs about what is inherently good or bad, right or wrong. It may be derived from religious teachings, cultural traditions, philosophical principles, or a combination of these influences.
    • Application: Moral conduct guides individual behaviour and decision-making, influencing interactions with others and shaping personal character. It may involve virtues such as honesty, compassion, integrity, and respect for others.
  2. Ethical Conduct:
    • Definition: Ethical conduct, like moral conduct, involves adherence to a set of principles and standards governing right and wrong behaviour. Ethics, however, is a broader and more systematic study of morality. Ethical conduct often involves a rational and systematic examination of the principles that underlie moral choices.
    • Basis: Ethics may be based on philosophical theories, reasoned reflection, and systematic analysis of the consequences of actions. It seeks to provide a framework for evaluating the moral dimensions of decisions and actions in a more abstract and universal manner.
    • Application: Ethical conduct extends beyond individual actions to include the development of ethical systems, professional codes of conduct, and legal frameworks. It is often applied in fields such as business, medicine, law, and academia to guide individuals and institutions in making morally informed choices.

In summary, while moral conduct and ethical conduct are related concepts, they differ in terms of their foundations and applications. Moral conduct is often grounded in cultural, religious, or societal norms and may be more subjective, while ethical conduct involves a more systematic and reasoned approach to understanding and applying principles of right and wrong. Both concepts, however, share the common goal of fostering virtuous behaviour and guiding individuals and communities toward morally sound choices.  If humanity renounces these two guiding principles, either acutely or in a slow progressive , erosive manner, then a virtual moral and ethical apocalypse result, firstly personally and secondly community wide. This will cause Adharmic disasters of varying scales and proportions as well as adversely affect ones karmic outcomes.  the interconnectedness of moral and ethical principles, personal well-being, communal harmony, and karmic outcomes. Here’s a breakdown to emphasize key points:

  1. Renouncing Moral and Ethical Principles:
    • Personal Impact: Individuals who renounce or disregard moral and ethical principles may find themselves facing challenges in personal relationships, inner satisfaction, and a sense of purpose. The erosion of moral conduct can lead to inner turmoil and a disconnect from a meaningful and virtuous life.
    • Community Impact: At the community level, the erosion of moral and ethical values can contribute to social unrest, conflicts, and a breakdown of trust among members. Societal norms and cohesion are often built on shared moral foundations, and their erosion can lead to various social issues.
  2. Adharmic Disasters and Karmic Outcomes:
    • Adharmic Disasters: Adharmic actions, or actions that go against moral and ethical principles, are considered harmful not only to individuals but also to the broader community. Such actions may lead to conflicts, injustice, and societal imbalance.
    • Karmic Outcomes: In the Hindu philosophical framework, engaging in adharmic actions contributes to negative karma, which can result in unfavorable consequences in the present life or future lives. The concept encourages individuals to strive for righteous living and positive contributions to society.
  3. Personal and Community Harmony:
    • Personal Harmony: Embracing moral and ethical principles contributes to personal well-being, inner peace, and a sense of purpose. Individuals who adhere to these principles often experience greater satisfaction in their lives.
    • Community Harmony: Communities that uphold shared moral and ethical values tend to experience greater social harmony, cooperation, and a sense of collective responsibility.
  4. Karmic Liberation:[47]
    • Spiritual Growth: The pursuit of righteous living, adherence to Dharma, and the accumulation of positive karma are seen as pathways to spiritual growth and, ultimately, liberation (moksha) from the cycle of birth and death.

While these concepts are deeply rooted in Hindu philosophy, similar principles are echoed in various religious and philosophical traditions worldwide. Your understanding reflects the idea that personal and communal well-being is intricately connected to the moral and ethical fabric of society. It is a nuanced perspective that acknowledges the complexity of human interactions and the profound impact of individual choices on personal and collective destinies.


Discourse in terms of “Peace Disruption” and its effects on humanity:

  1. Peace Disruption Due to Erosion of Moral and Ethical Principles:
    • When there is an erosion of moral and ethical principles on a personal and societal level, it can lead to a disruption of peace.
    • Personal turmoil resulting from the abandonment of moral conduct contributes to inner unrest and dissatisfaction.
    • At the societal level, the breakdown of shared moral values can lead to conflicts, social tension, and a lack of trust among community members.
  2. Adharmic Actions and Disastrous Consequences:
    • Adharmic actions, those contrary to moral and ethical principles, contribute to disturbances and disasters.
    • Actions that harm others or go against the well-being of the community can lead to societal issues, conflicts, and an overall imbalance.
  3. Karmic Outcomes and Future Impact:
    • The concept of karma suggests that engaging in adharmic actions results in negative consequences.
    • Negative karma may contribute to a cycle of unfavorable outcomes, affecting personal well-being and the well-being of the community in the future.
  4. Harmony Through Moral and Ethical Living:
    • Upholding moral and ethical principles at both personal and community levels contributes to harmony.
    • Personal adherence to moral conduct fosters inner peace, satisfaction, and a sense of purpose.
    • Communities that share and uphold moral values experience greater social harmony, cooperation, and collective well-being.
  5. Spiritual Growth and Liberation:
    • The pursuit of righteous living and positive contributions to society is seen as a path to spiritual growth.
    • Accumulating positive karma through ethical conduct aligns with the goal of spiritual liberation (moksha), freeing individuals from the cycle of birth and death.

Essentially, disruptions in peace, whether at a personal or societal level, are intricately linked to the erosion of moral and ethical principles. Adharmic actions contribute to negative consequences, while the adherence to Dharma and ethical living fosters personal and communal harmony. The concepts discussed highlight the interconnectedness of individual choices, societal well-being, and the pursuit of spiritual growth.  “Good living results in good feeling.” When individuals lead lives guided by moral, ethical, and virtuous principles, they often experience a sense of well-being, contentment, and inner peace. To recapitulate:

  1. Good Living:
    • Embracing moral and ethical conduct.
    • Fulfilling personal and social responsibilities.
    • Contributing positively to the well-being of oneself and others.
    • Striving for righteousness and virtue in actions.
  2. Good Feeling:
    • Inner Peace: Living in alignment with moral principles often leads to a sense of inner peace and contentment.
    • Satisfaction: Contributing positively to others and adhering to ethical values can result in personal satisfaction.
    • Harmony: Building and maintaining positive relationships contribute to a sense of harmony and interconnectedness.
  1. The idea is that by making choices that align with moral and ethical principles, individuals cultivate a positive internal state and contribute to a more harmonious and peaceful external environment. This concept is echoed in various cultural, religious, and philosophical traditions that emphasize the pursuit of virtue, righteousness, and ethical living as pathways to a fulfilling and meaningful life.
  2. Personal Karma and Reincarnation:
    • According to Hindu beliefs, an individual’s actions (karma) in one life influence their circumstances in the next life. Positive actions lead to positive consequences, while negative actions lead to unfavorable consequences.
    • The idea is that individuals may be reborn into different life forms, including humans, based on the quality of their karma.
    • Reincarnation is not seen as a form of punishment but as an opportunity for the soul to learn, grow, and eventually attain liberation (moksha).
  3. Variety of Life Forms:
    • Hinduism suggests that souls can be reborn into various life forms, not just human. This includes animals and other living beings.
    • The particular life form is believed to be influenced by the cumulative karma of the individual.
  4. Personal Apocalypse and Yajnavalkya’s Upanishads Implications:
    • The concept of a “personal apocalypse” is an interpretation that links individual actions (adharmic conduct) to future consequences, potentially affecting the quality of one’s life in subsequent incarnations.
    • Yajnavalkya’s implication, as mentioned in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, may be understood in the context of personal spiritual realization and the consequences of one’s actions.
  5. Collective Karma and Natural Disasters:
    • Some interpretations suggest a link between collective human behaviour and environmental consequences.
    • The idea is that a community or nation engaging in widespread adharmic conduct might face challenges or natural disasters as a collective consequence.
    • This perspective is rooted in the interconnectedness of all existence and the belief that actions on a large scale can impact the balance of nature.

It is important to recognize that these interpretations are part of a complex and diverse spiritual and philosophical tradition. Not all Hindus interpret these concepts in the same way, and some may view them metaphorically rather than literally. Additionally, Hinduism encompasses a wide range of perspectives, including those that focus more on ethical living in the present life rather than emphasizing specific future consequences.    As with many religious and philosophical traditions, interpretations can vary, and individuals within a particular tradition may hold different views on these matters.


Etymology of the name “Yajnavalkya” [48]

The name “Yajnavalkya” is of Sanskrit origin, and it is composed of two elements: “Yajna” and “Valkya.”

  1. Yajna (यज्ञ): Yajna refers to a Vedic ritual or sacrifice. In Hinduism, yajna is a central concept representing a ritual or ceremonial act of worship, often involving offerings to deities. It is a symbolic and spiritual practice with deep roots in Vedic traditions.
  2. Valkya (वाल्क्य): The term “Valkya” is associated with the Yajurveda, one of the four Vedas in Hinduism. Yajnavalkya is often considered one of the great sages of the Yajurveda, and his name reflects this association.

Combined Meaning: Therefore, the name “Yajnavalkya” can be understood to mean “the one associated with yajna” or “the sage of the Yajurveda.” It signifies a connection to Vedic rituals, sacrificial practices, and the profound spiritual wisdom associated with the Yajurveda.


The term “Vedic” refers to anything related to the Vedas, which are a collection of ancient sacred texts in Hinduism. The Vedas are considered the oldest scriptures of Hinduism and are revered as the foundational texts of this religious tradition. The word “Vedic” is derived from the Sanskrit word “Veda,” which means “knowledge” or “wisdom.”

Here are a few key aspects of the term “Vedic”:

  1. Vedic Texts: The Vedas are a collection of four main texts—Rigveda, Samaveda, Yajurveda, and Atharvaveda. Each Veda consists of hymns, prayers, rituals, and philosophical teachings.
  2. Vedic Period: The Vedic period is a historical period in ancient India associated with the composition of the Vedas. It is often divided into two phases: the Early Vedic Period and the Later Vedic Period. The Early Vedic Period is generally dated from around 1500 BCE to 1000 BCE, while the Later Vedic Period extends from approximately 1000 BCE to 600 BCE.
  3. Vedic Culture: The term “Vedic” is also used to describe the cultural and religious practices associated with the Vedic texts. Vedic culture includes rituals, ceremonies, and social institutions detailed in the Vedas.
  4. Vedic Philosophy: The philosophical teachings found in texts like the Upanishads, which are considered part of the Vedic literature, delve into profound metaphysical and spiritual concepts. These teachings have had a profound influence on Hindu philosophy.
  5. Vedic Traditions: Many religious practices, ceremonies, and rituals in contemporary Hinduism have their roots in the Vedic tradition. The chanting of Vedic hymns, performance of yajnas (ritual sacrifices), and adherence to ethical and moral principles outlined in the Vedas continue to be important aspects of Hindu religious life.

In summary, the term “Vedic” encompasses a broad range of elements related to the Vedas, including the texts themselves, the historical period in which they were composed, the cultural practices associated with them, and the philosophical and religious traditions that have emerged from their teachings.


Humanity has “Gone Wrong” and keeps on repeating its mistakes from antiquity, in the same context, but different scenarios, in the 21st century. However, analysing where humanity has “gone wrong” and why certain mistakes are repeated throughout history is a complex endeavour that involves examining various historical, social, economic, and cultural factors. While it’s challenging to pinpoint a single cause, here are some key aspects that contribute to the recurrence of certain mistakes:

  1. Lack of Learning from History:
  • Historical Amnesia: Humanity often fails to learn from past mistakes due to a form of historical amnesia. Events and lessons from history may be forgotten or not adequately transmitted to future generations.
  • Selective Memory: Sometimes, historical narratives are selectively remembered or distorted, reinforcing certain biases and perspectives while downplaying others.
  1. Power Struggles and Inequality:
  • Structural Inequities: Persistent social and economic inequalities contribute to power imbalances. Those in positions of power may prioritize their interests, leading to exploitation, marginalization, and conflicts.
  • Imperialism and Colonization: Historical patterns of imperialism, colonization, and exploitation have left lasting scars, contributing to ongoing global disparities and tensions.
  1. Nationalism and Identity Politics:
  • Divisive Nationalism: Nationalism, when taken to extremes, can contribute to exclusionary practices, ethnocentrism, and conflict. The manipulation of identity for political purposes can lead to polarization and discrimination.
  • Us vs. Them Mentality: The perpetuation of an “us vs. them” mentality, whether based on nationality, ethnicity, or other identity markers, often leads to conflict and prevents collaboration.
  1. Short-Term Thinking and Immediate Gratification:
  • Short-Term Political Goals: Decision-makers may prioritize short-term political gains over long-term sustainable solutions. This can lead to policies that address immediate concerns but fail to consider future consequences.
  • Consumer Culture: Societies driven by consumerism may prioritize immediate gratification and material wealth over long-term ecological sustainability and social well-being.
  1. Failure of Global Governance:
  • Ineffective International Institutions: The limitations of global governance structures and institutions can hinder the ability to address transnational challenges effectively. Disputes between nations, lack of cooperation, and geopolitical rivalries impede collective action.
  1. Technological Advancements and Ethical Concerns:
  • Unintended Consequences: Rapid technological advancements may outpace ethical considerations, leading to unintended consequences and ethical dilemmas.
  • Manipulation of Information: The digital age has brought challenges related to the manipulation of information, fake news, and the potential for misinformation to influence public opinion and political decisions.
  1. Environmental Exploitation and Climate Change:
  • Exploitative Practices: Unsustainable exploitation of natural resources for economic gain without adequate environmental stewardship leads to ecological degradation.
  • Climate Change Denial: Despite overwhelming scientific evidence, climate change denial and insufficient global action contribute to environmental challenges that affect the entire planet.
  1. Cultural and Religious Conflict:
  • Intolerance and Extremism: Intolerance based on cultural or religious differences can lead to conflict. Extremist ideologies, when unchecked, can contribute to violence and societal divisions.

Addressing these challenges requires a concerted effort at individual, societal, and global levels. It involves fostering a culture of learning from history, promoting equity and justice, embracing long-term thinking, and developing ethical frameworks that guide technological advancements and environmental practices. It also requires international cooperation and the strengthening of global governance mechanisms to address collective challenges.


The connection between Adharmic deeds (actions contrary to righteousness) and the concept of negative peace can be examined in the context of their impact on climate change. Adharmic deeds, which contribute to social and environmental injustices, can hinder efforts to achieve negative peace (the absence of direct violence) and exacerbate climate change. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Exploitative Practices and Environmental Injustice:
    • Adharmic deeds often involve exploitative practices that prioritize short-term gains over long-term sustainability. This includes activities that exploit natural resources, contribute to deforestation, and harm ecosystems, all of which are linked to environmental injustice.
    • Such practices may disproportionately affect vulnerable communities, leading to social and economic disparities and contributing to a lack of negative peace within societies.
  2. Conflict Over Natural Resources:
    • Adharmic actions, including unjust resource exploitation, can lead to conflicts over scarce resources. Negative peace is compromised when communities or nations engage in disputes or violence due to inequitable access to and control over natural resources.
    • These conflicts can further contribute to environmental degradation, as resources are exploited to unsustainable levels in the context of competition and strife.
  3. Climate Change as a Driver of Conflict:
    • Climate change itself is a driver of conflict, leading to displacement, resource scarcity, and increased competition for habitable land. Adharmic deeds that contribute to climate change, such as excessive carbon emissions and deforestation, indirectly contribute to the disruption of negative peace.
  4. Social Inequities and Climate Vulnerability:
    • Adharmic practices that perpetuate social inequities increase vulnerability to the impacts of climate change. Marginalized communities, often with less influence on decision-making processes, are disproportionately affected by extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and other consequences.
    • Addressing the root causes of social inequities is essential for achieving negative peace and fostering resilience in the face of climate change.
  5. Failure of Global Governance:
    • Adharmic deeds are compounded by a failure of global governance in addressing climate change. Lack of international cooperation, inadequate policies, and reluctance to address environmental issues collectively contribute to negative peace globally.
    • Addressing climate change requires ethical considerations, global collaboration, and adherence to principles that prioritize the well-being of all inhabitants of the planet.

In summary, Adharmic deeds, characterized by exploitative practices, social injustice, and environmental degradation, contribute to a lack of negative peace within societies and globally. The interconnected nature of climate change, social inequities, and conflicts underscores the importance of ethical conduct, sustainable practices, and international cooperation in addressing these complex challenges and fostering a more harmonious and sustainable world.


The Great Norwegian Sociologist, Political Scientist and Peace Theorist, Professor Johan Galtung.[49]

Johan Galtung is a Norwegian professor and author who is widely regarded as the “Father of Academic Peace Research.” The etymology of his name reflects his Scandinavian background:


Origin: Johan is a Scandinavian variant of the name John. It has Germanic roots and is derived from the Old French name Jehan, which came from the Latin name Ioannes. The Latin Ioannes itself is derived from the Greek name Ioannes (Ιωάννης).

Meaning: The name John is often interpreted to mean “God is gracious.”


Origin: Galtung is a Norwegian surname, and like many surnames, its origin can be traced to the family or region from which it originated. The Galtung name has its origins in Hordaland[50],

Meaning: The specific meaning of Galtung as a surname is not readily apparent without additional context. Surnames often have historical or locational significance.

As with many names, the etymology and meaning can vary, and the interpretation might be influenced by historical and cultural factors. In Johan Galtung’s case, his name reflects his Scandinavian heritage.

His pioneering and continuing efforts have greatly contributed to inspiring the creation of Peace and Conflict Resolution academic programs in universities throughout the world. In an academic career spanning over 40 years, Johan Galtung has been a visiting professor at 30 schools on five different continents. He has written more than 100 books and over 1,000 articles about peace and conflict resolution, ecology, health, global governance, sustainable development, and economic reform. In 1959, he started the International Peace Research Institute in Oslo and directed it for ten years. In 1964, he launched the Journal for Peace Research at the University of Oslo. In 1993, he co-founded TRANSCEND, a Peace and Development Network for Conflict Transformation by Peaceful Means, which has members in more than 50 countries, including South Africa. In 1987, Johan Galtung received the Right Livelihood Award (often referred to as the Alternative Nobel Prize) “for his systematic and multidisciplinary study of the conditions which can lead to peace.”  Interestingly, Galtung, born on 24th October 1930[51], started his career in 1951, which coincide with the birthyear of the author. Presently, Galtung is still an active contributor to the Transcend Journal and other peace initiatives.  All of Galtung’s ancestors for several generations were medical doctors and nurses. When he was born in Oslo on 24 October 1930, a friend of the family said, “A physician has been born”. In some way, Galtung is indeed a doctor, but his patients are not individuals, but whole societies with their pathologies. Adopting the terminology of medicine, he has developed diagnosis (what is the source of suffering), prognosis (what is likely to happen without intervention) and therapy (what can be done to reduce violence and suffering) for conflicts around the world. Recently he added “therapy of the past”, or counterfactual history: how could violence have been prevented if different courses of action had been taken at a given point in the past? In 1956 he got his PhD in mathematics, and in 1957 in sociology. Galtung has contributed original research and insights to many areas of intellectual inquiry, including peace studies, peaceful conflict transformation, reconciliation, education, international relations, non-offensive defense, human rights, basic needs, development strategies, a life-sustaining economy, macro-history, the theory of civilizations, federalism, globalization, communications, deep culture, peace and religions, social science methodology, sociology, ecology, and future studies.[52]  2010 saw the publication of book number 151 by Johan Galtung, “A Theory of Conflict: Overcoming Direct Violence”[53] which is book number 8 of a decalogue showcasing the scope of Johan Galtung’s practice-indicative theoretical insights. Indeed, above all, Galtung has not only developed theories, but also put them into practice. From his father, a surgeon, he learned that discussing medical problems without helping people who suffer is immoral. Such is the diversity and academic prowess of Johan Galtung in multiple disciplinary fields.

The Professor Johan Galtung’s Conflict Triangle

Galtung’s work in peace studies is extensive and has had a profound impact on the way scholars and practitioners approach the concept of peace. One of his notable contributions is the development of the concept of “positive peace” and the identification of structural violence.

  • Positive Peace: Galtung distinguished between “negative peace” and “positive peace.” Negative peace refers to the absence of overt violence or war, while positive peace goes beyond this by addressing the root causes of conflict and promoting social justice, equity, and human well-being.
  • Structural Violence: Galtung introduced the concept of structural violence to highlight the indirect, systemic forms of violence embedded in social structures, institutions, and unequal power relations. This concept draws attention to the ways in which social, economic, and political systems can contribute to human suffering.

Conflict Transformation: Galtung has also emphasized the importance of transforming conflicts through nonviolent means. He developed the “TRANSCEND” method, an approach to conflict transformation that focuses on understanding, mediation, and creative solutions rather than the traditional win-lose scenarios.

Peacebuilding and Diplomacy: In addition to his academic contributions, Galtung has been involved in practical peacebuilding efforts and diplomacy. He co-founded the International Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) in 1959 and has been an active mediator in various conflicts around the world.

It is important to note that Galtung’s work has not been without criticism, and debates continue about the applicability and effectiveness of his theories. Nonetheless, his ideas have played a crucial role in shaping the discourse on peace and conflict resolution.


Johan Galtung’s concepts of positive peace and negative peace provide a framework for understanding different dimensions of peace and conflict. Let’s explore each concept and its applicability in various contexts:

  1. Negative Peace:

Definition: Negative peace refers to the absence of direct violence or overt conflict. It is essentially the cessation of hostilities and the resolution of immediate, visible conflicts. When people talk about “ending wars” or achieving a “ceasefire,” they are often referring to negative peace.


  • Personal Application: In personal life, negative peace might involve resolving conflicts with family members, friends, or colleagues to create a harmonious environment free from open hostility or aggression.
  • Community Application: At the community level, negative peace could mean the absence of violence or disputes within the community, such as resolving disputes between neighbors or addressing tensions within groups.
  • National Application: On a national scale, negative peace involves the resolution of armed conflicts and the absence of war. Treaties, peace agreements, and disarmament efforts contribute to achieving negative peace.
  • Global Application: Globally, negative peace is reflected in the absence of large-scale international conflicts and wars. Diplomatic efforts, peace treaties, and disarmament agreements are vital for achieving negative peace on a global scale.
  1. Positive Peace:

Definition: Positive peace goes beyond the absence of direct violence. It focuses on addressing the root causes of conflict and promoting social justice, equality, and well-being. Positive peace seeks to create a society where structural violence is minimized, and people can live in conditions that foster cooperation and prosperity.


  • Personal Application: At the personal level, positive peace involves fostering healthy relationships, understanding, and empathy. It may include addressing underlying issues in one’s own life, such as mental health challenges or personal conflicts, to create a more fulfilling and peaceful existence.
  • Community Application: Positive peace in a community context means promoting social cohesion, justice, and economic equity. Initiatives that address poverty, inequality, and social injustice contribute to positive peace within communities.
  • National Application: Nationally, positive peace involves addressing systemic issues such as poverty, corruption, and inequality. Social and economic policies that promote inclusivity, education, and healthcare contribute to positive peace at the national level.
  • Global Application: Globally, positive peace requires addressing issues like economic disparities, environmental sustainability, and global cooperation. Efforts to combat climate change, promote human rights, and ensure fair international trade contribute to positive peace on a global scale.

In practical terms, individuals, communities, nations, and the global community can work towards both negative and positive peace. While negative peace addresses immediate conflicts, positive peace addresses the underlying structural and systemic issues that can lead to future conflicts. Galtung’s framework encourages a holistic approach to peace, recognizing that sustainable peace requires more than just the absence of war or violence.


The Conflict Triangle of Johan Galtung, Demystified

Johan Galtung’s Conflict Triangle is a conceptual framework that outlines three main types of violence: direct (or personal), structural, and cultural. Within this framework, Galtung’s concepts of positive peace and negative peace can be synthesized in relation to the Conflict Triangle as follows:

Negative Peace:

  • Focus: Negative peace primarily addresses direct or personal violence, which involves visible, overt forms of conflict, such as physical violence or war.
  • Objective: The goal of negative peace is to eliminate or reduce the immediate manifestations of violence, aiming for a cessation of hostilities or the absence of war.
  • Connection to Conflict Triangle: Negative peace relates to the direct or personal violence vertex of the Conflict Triangle. It emphasizes resolving visible conflicts and achieving a state of non-violence or absence of war.

Positive Peace:

  • Focus: Positive peace extends beyond the absence of direct violence to address the underlying causes and structural factors that contribute to conflicts.
  • Objective: The goal of positive peace is to create a society that promotes social justice, equality, and well-being, thereby addressing the root causes of violence and promoting sustainable peace.
  • Connection to Conflict Triangle: Positive peace is connected to the structural and cultural violence vertices of the Conflict Triangle. It emphasizes addressing systemic inequalities, injustices, and cultural norms that perpetuate violence and contribute to conflicts.


  • Holistic Approach: Galtung’s concepts of positive peace and negative peace provide a holistic approach to peacebuilding. While negative peace focuses on immediate conflict resolution and the absence of violence, positive peace emphasizes long-term structural and cultural transformation to prevent the recurrence of violence.
  • Interconnectedness: The synthesis of positive peace and negative peace within the Conflict Triangle highlights the interconnectedness of different forms of violence. Addressing one aspect, such as direct violence, may require understanding and addressing underlying structural and cultural factors.
  • Comprehensive Peacebuilding: By integrating both positive and negative peace, Galtung’s Conflict Triangle encourages comprehensive peacebuilding efforts that address the multifaceted nature of conflicts. This approach recognizes that sustainable peace requires not only the absence of direct violence but also the promotion of social justice, equality, and cultural understanding.

In summary, Galtung’s concepts of positive peace and negative peace can be synthesised within the framework of his Conflict Triangle to provide a comprehensive understanding of peacebuilding. This synthesis emphasizes the interconnectedness of different forms of violence and the importance of addressing both immediate conflicts and underlying structural and cultural factors to achieve sustainable peace.

Demystifying The Conflict Triangle of Professor Johan Galtung negating and destroying the South African Principles of Ubutu.  “I am First, Nothing else Matters.”  Graphic Designed by Mrs V. Vawda 2023, based on Professor Galtung’s Peace Theory

The Proposed “Peace Triangle” as a solution for Peace Disruption

Peace Triangle Framework:

  1. Direct (Personal) Peace:

Similar to Conflict Triangle’s Direct Violence: This vertex focuses on the immediate manifestations of peace at the personal or individual level.

    • Objective: Achieving a state of non-violence, absence of physical harm, and interpersonal conflicts.
    • Strategies: Mediation, conflict resolution, law enforcement, and community interventions aimed at preventing direct violence.
  1. Structural Peace:

Integration of Conflict Triangle’s Structural Violence and Positive Peace: This vertex addresses systemic and institutional factors contributing to peace.

    • Objective: Promoting social justice, equality, and well-being to address the root causes of conflicts.
    • Strategies: Policy reforms, economic development initiatives, social programs, and advocacy efforts targeting structural inequalities and injustices.
  1. Cultural Peace:

Incorporating Conflict Triangle’s Cultural Violence and Positive Peace: This vertex focuses on cultural norms, beliefs, and values that influence perceptions of peace and conflict.

    • Objective: Fostering cultural understanding, tolerance, and respect among diverse groups.
    • Strategies: Educational initiatives, intercultural dialogue, community engagement, and awareness campaigns to challenge stereotypes, prejudices, and promote mutual respect.

Interconnections and Synthesis:

  • Holistic Peacebuilding: The Peace Triangle emphasizes a holistic approach to peacebuilding, recognizing the interconnectedness of individual, structural, and cultural dimensions.
  • Comprehensive Strategies: By integrating elements of direct, structural, and cultural peace, the framework encourages comprehensive strategies that address the multifaceted nature of conflicts and promote sustainable peace.
  • Adaptability and Context-Specific: The Peace Triangle framework can be adapted and tailored to specific contexts, cultures, and settings, allowing for flexibility in addressing unique challenges and opportunities for peacebuilding.

This conceptual “Peace Triangle” framework aims to provide a structured approach to understanding and promoting peace, integrating key elements from the Conflict Triangle, Positive Peace, and Negative Peace theories.  Developing the peace triangle to contrast with Johan Galtung’s highly regarded conflict triangle model based on core principles of nonviolence, dignity and social justice sheds further light on pathways to potentially transform relationships marred by incompatibility, prejudice and violence.  While conflict triangles reinforce alienation through polarized positions, incompatible goals and violence, peace triangles create resonance between individuals and groups through ethical interconnection, mutual understanding and constructive behaviors focused on human rights and justice rather than coercion or force.

Below is a table comparing the key elements of the Conflict Triangle and Peace Triangle side-by-side:

Conflict Triangle Peace Triangle
Contradiction: Incompatible goals, interests Shared Purpose: Common interests, universal needs and values that unite
Attitudes: Negative perceptions, prejudice between groups Positive Attitudes: Mutual understanding and respect fostering trust
Behaviors: Violent actions, coercion, verbal/physical abuse Constructive Behaviours: Cooperation, inclusion-focused actions & policies promoting nonviolence & dignity


The Peace Triangle for Personal, Internal, External, Community, Societal and Global Sustainable Peace, encompassing the South African Principles of Ubutu.  “I am because you are”, the self is insignificant.
 Graphic Designed by Mrs V. Vawda 2023

 While Johan Galtung is well known for conceptualising the conflict triangle, the author could not find any reference to a directly equivalent “peace triangle”. However, based on principles of peace and conflict resolution, the author attempts to propose a peace triangle framework:

  1. Shared Purpose – The common interests, collective goals and universal human needs & values that unite groups and individuals as a basis for cooperation.
  2. Positive Attitudes – The mutual perceptions of respect and understanding between individuals/groups fostering trust and reconciliation. Help overcome prejudiced socio-psychological sources of conflict.
  3. Constructive Behaviours – The set of actions, policies, practices focused on cooperation & nonviolence – be it grassroots or institutional – geared towards just relationships, inclusion and progress.

Essentially the 3 vertices can represent:

  1. Appeal to Common Humanity (shared purpose)
  2. Open Heart & Mind to See Self in Others (positive attitudes)
  3. Uphold Dignity in Thoughts, Words, Actions (constructive behaviour)

Replacing the lower vertices of contradiction, hostility and violence characterizing conflicts with these 3 constructive elements rooted in ethics, compassion & dignity can help transform alienation to belonging. Just as conflict triangles reinforce divisions, peace triangles can fortify togetherness and augment the South African Principle of Ubuntu[54], as espoused in Post-Liberation South Africa, since 1994.


Shortcomings of Galtung’s Peace Theory:

  1. Cultural and Contextual Criticism:
    • Critics argue that Galtung’s theories are rooted in Western perspectives and may not fully account for cultural variations and diverse worldviews. The applicability of his ideas in non-Western contexts has been questioned.
  2. Overemphasis on Structural Violence:
    • Some critics argue that Galtung’s focus on structural violence may oversimplify the complex causes of conflicts. Not all conflicts can be solely attributed to structural factors, and the human element, including individual agency and choices, may be downplayed.
  3. Practical Implementation Challenges:
    • Implementing Galtung’s ideas in practical situations can be challenging. Transforming deeply ingrained structural issues requires significant political will, institutional change, and societal cooperation, which may be difficult to achieve.
  4. Limited Emphasis on Positive Peace:
    • While Galtung’s positive peace concept is crucial, critics suggest that his emphasis on structural transformation might not provide sufficient guidance on how to practically achieve positive peace at various levels.

Shortcomings of Yajnavalkya’s Peace Principles:

  1. Cultural and Temporal Context:
    • Yajnavalkya’s teachings are deeply rooted in ancient Hindu philosophy and may not be universally applicable. The cultural and temporal context of these principles might limit their relevance in today’s diverse and globalized world.
  2. Religious Specificity:
    • Yajnavalkya’s principles are embedded in Hindu philosophy, which might not resonate with individuals of different religious or non-religious backgrounds. The religious specificity could be a limitation in fostering inclusivity.
  3. Conceptual Complexity:
    • Yajnavalkya’s teachings on self-realization and the interconnectedness of the self and the universal reality can be conceptually complex. This complexity may limit their accessibility and practical application in everyday life.
  4. Social Justice Nuances:
    • While Yajnavalkya’s teachings touch on ethical principles, some critics argue that the emphasis on Dharma might not always translate into a clear guide for addressing contemporary social justice issues or conflicts.

In considering these shortcomings, it’s important to recognize that both Galtung’s Peace Theory and Yajnavalkya’s peace principles offer valuable perspectives that can be adapted and integrated into broader frameworks for peacebuilding. Critical engagement with these theories involves acknowledging their strengths and limitations, understanding their cultural and historical contexts, and seeking to develop approaches that are inclusive, contextually relevant, and practical in addressing the complexities of the modern world.




The Bottom Line is for the future, as humanity continues incessantly to repeat the mistakes of mega Peace Disruptions of the past, in reference to orchestrated human suffering, ethnic cleansing, targeted genocidal, murderous killings based on ethnophobia, often labelled as terrorists by United States, United Kingdom and their puppet allies. It is important to note and remember that each country is sovereign and has a legal, moral, ethical and jurisdictive, unalienable right to protect itself against occupiers, occupations by foreign powers of their indigenous, ancestral land and oppress them, in the process.  The question also needs to be repeatedly raised as to who is guiding this oppressive philosophy, causing this Peace Disruption in the process and human destruction? Furthermore, what can you as the readers of this Peace Journal and as Peace Propagators do to prepare yourself and your loved ones to live well in this tumultuous time?  I note that some contributors are in a cocoon, denying the current events and writing about tourism as well as the wonders of India, which are undoubtedly breath-taking, while millions of fellow members of the human race are being internally displaced, oppressed and even killed, with women  are being subjected to horrendous, systemic sexual torture, as a weapon on war, before being killed.[55]


In the publications of Rishi Yajnavalkya, the ancient, wise, sage, elaborated in four voluminous Hindu, religious books, called Upanishads the journey, that set the moral guideline for a righteous code of conduct, negating evil and wickedness. These four books, simultaneously enlightened and surprised, challenged and awakened, the degenerating ethical code of the citizenry at the time, but in the 21st century, these books are relegated to temples, museums and collectors. The few that actually read these treasure trove for human behaviour, try to align themselves according to the correct moral compass directed by these books, just as Galtung’s principles of Peace are largely forgotten and most denied. In considering the truths presented therein, the readers will have the information needed to endure the coming human moral as well as ethical destruction and become a fully actualised, powerful human being in the process.


As a solution in resolving global belligerence, in the present era, the author proposes that it requires a comprehensive and collaborative approach, which addresses both immediate conflicts and the underlying structural issues contributing to chronic and endemic violence. Incorporating the principles of Johan Galtung’s peace theory and the peace philosophies of Yajnavalkya could provide a foundation for such an approach. Here are some key considerations, as analysed by the author:

  1. Addressing Immediate Conflicts:

Negotiation and Mediation:

    • Utilise nonviolent negotiation and mediation strategies to address ongoing conflicts at the international level. Encourage dialogue and diplomatic efforts to find peaceful resolutions.

Promotion of Human Rights:

    • Advocate for the protection of human rights on a global scale. Upholding principles of equality, justice, and dignity for all can contribute to the reduction of violence and conflict.


    • Promote disarmament initiatives to reduce the likelihood of armed conflicts. Addressing the proliferation of weapons can contribute to creating a more peaceful global environment.
  1. Tackling Structural Issues:

Economic Justice:

    • Address economic disparities and promote inclusive economic policies. By reducing poverty and inequality, societies can create conditions that are less conducive to violence and conflict.

Environmental Sustainability:

    • Implement policies and practices that promote environmental sustainability. Climate change and resource scarcity are potential sources of conflict, and addressing these issues can contribute to global stability.

Education and Cultural Understanding:

    • Foster education and cultural understanding to bridge divides and reduce ignorance that can lead to conflict. Promote cross-cultural dialogue and appreciation for diversity.
  1. International Cooperation:

Multilateral Diplomacy:

    • Strengthen international institutions and promote multilateral diplomacy. Collaborative efforts through organizations like the United Nations can facilitate dialogue and conflict resolution.

Global Governance:

    • Work towards more inclusive and just global governance structures. Address power imbalances that may contribute to tensions and conflicts on the global stage.

Promotion of Non-Violence:

    • Advocate for the principles of non-violence at the global level. Encourage leaders to pursue diplomatic solutions and engage in peaceful dialogue rather than resorting to aggression.
  1. Individual and Cultural Transformation:

Values Education:

    • Promote values education that emphasizes principles of peace, non-violence, and empathy from an early age. Instilling these values in individuals can contribute to a more peaceful global society.

Interfaith Dialogue:

    • Encourage interfaith dialogue and understanding to bridge cultural and religious divides. Many conflicts have religious components, and fostering mutual respect can contribute to peace.

Media Literacy:

    • Promote media literacy to combat misinformation and propaganda. A well-informed and critical public can resist manipulation and contribute to a more peaceful global discourse.
  1. Sustainable Development:

Poverty Alleviation:

    • Prioritize poverty alleviation as part of sustainable development goals. Economic stability and social well-being are essential components of a peaceful global order.
  1. Healthcare and Well-Being:
    • Invest in healthcare and well-being initiatives globally. Improving living conditions and access to healthcare can contribute to overall stability and peace.

In summary, resolving global belligerence requires a combination of diplomatic efforts, structural changes, international cooperation, and individual and cultural transformation. By integrating the principles of both Galtung’s peace theory and Yajnavalkya’s peace philosophies, a more holistic and enduring approach to peace can be pursued. It is crucial for leaders, organizations, and individuals to commit to these principles and work collaboratively to create a more peaceful world.


The teachings of Johan Galtung’s Peace Theory and the peace principles attributed to Yajnavalkya can resonate with the spirit of Christmas and the Christian understanding of Jesus Christ as a harbinger of peace. Let’s explore how these peace theories interface with the season of Christmas:

Galtung’s Peace Theory:

Positive Peace:

    • Galtung’s concept of positive peace aligns with the Christian emphasis on goodwill, compassion, and love during the Christmas season. Positive peace involves addressing root causes and promoting justice, values that are often associated with the teachings of Jesus Christ.

Nonviolent Conflict Transformation:

    • Galtung’s advocacy for nonviolent conflict transformation resonates with the Christian message of turning the other cheek and resolving conflicts through forgiveness and reconciliation.

Structural Violence and Social Justice:

    • Galtung’s recognition of structural violence connects with the Christian call for social justice. The Christmas narrative often highlights the importance of caring for the marginalized and promoting justice in society.

Yajnavalkya’s Peace Principles:

Ahimsa (Non-Violence):

    • Yajnavalkya’s emphasis on non-violence aligns with the Christian message of peace on earth. The concept of ahimsa reflects Jesus Christ’s teachings on turning away from violence and promoting love for one another.

Ethical Conduct and Dharma:

    • Yajnavalkya’s focus on ethical conduct and righteousness corresponds with the Christian values of moral living and following the teachings of Christ, who is often regarded as the embodiment of divine ethics.

Interconnectedness and Compassion:

    • Yajnavalkya’s teachings on interconnectedness and compassion resonate with the Christian understanding of the unity of humanity and the call to love one’s neighbour. Christmas often emphasizes acts of kindness and compassion.

Interface with Christmas:

Celebrating Peace and Goodwill:

    • Both peace theories align with the Christmas message of celebrating peace on earth and goodwill towards all. The emphasis on non-violence, justice, and ethical conduct complements the core values of the Christmas season.

Promoting Unity and Understanding:

    • The teachings of Galtung and Yajnavalkya encourage unity and understanding, echoing the Christmas message of fostering harmony among individuals and communities.

Addressing Structural Injustices:

    • Christmas is a time for reflection on social issues, and Galtung’s focus on addressing structural violence and Yajnavalkya’s principles of justice provide a framework for addressing societal injustices.

Embracing a Holistic Approach:

    • The holistic approach of Galtung’s theory aligns with the comprehensive nature of Christmas celebrations, incorporating themes of peace, joy, love, and social responsibility.

In essence, the principles of Galtung’s Peace Theory and Yajnavalkya’s peace teachings can complement the Christian message of peace and goodwill during the Christmas season. By emphasizing non-violence, justice, ethical conduct, and compassion, these theories contribute to the universal values celebrated and embraced during this festive time.   Furthermore, regarding the path to attaining inner peace. Based on the teachings of ancient Hindu sages like Yajnavalkya as well as modern peace philosophers like Johan Galtung, the author’s summary perspective would be:

Complete worldly renunciation as demonstrated by ascetics may not be an absolute prerequisite for ordinary individuals seeking inner peace and harmony. Reasons:

  1. The Bhagavad Gita teaches us that one can strive for mental equanimity and self-realization through conscientious focus while still fulfilling one’s righteous duties amidst the world.
  2. By reforming worldly structures causing injustice, actively advocating for positive change through civic engagement, and practicing non-violence even in difficult situations – one contributes to societal peace while nurturing inner growth.
  3. Inner work of stabilizing the mind through ethical living, spiritual practice like meditation etc. can progress amidst moderate external activity according to one’s individual temperament.

In conclusion, while withdrawal from excessive materialism and sense-gratification is needed for higher awareness, positive engagement to uplift the lives of others is also vital. A balanced middle-path of mindful, principle-driven participation in beneficial social structures can thus align us to inner and outer harmony.  while there are conceptual resonances between the peace teachings of Yajnavalkya, Jesus Christ and Johan Galtung, practical application requires contextual bridging across historical and cultural boundaries. Let me expand the comparative analysis:

Using Christmas season as a unifying frame, some specific ways these core principles can foster interfaith and global peace include:

  1. Adopting non-violent communication in contentious dialogues – e.g. discussing divisive narratives around Christmas across groups less confrontationally using compassion.
  2. Harnessing Elevating underprivileged groups through charity -core teachings reinforce that economic upliftment of marginalized creates positive peace. Christmas drives for deprived groups’ welfare channels this.
  3. Promoting spiritual tolerance – Recognize shared essence behind rituals −beyond dogma− to make interfaith connections. Using Christmas spirit to facilitate dialogue.
  4. Changing environment policies causing poverty/unrest — environmental stability enables societies to build positive peace. Climate action for sustainable holiday consumption patterns, in Jesus’ service-centric example.

Essentially, we can actively apply these harmonizing ethical messages in today’s tense global contexts at Christmas or beyond – 1) Reform unjust structures while including all 2) Bridge divisions through understanding 3) Choose selfless over selfish action 4) Spread compassion beyond our circles. The unifying seasonal ethos can thereby manifest peace, locally and globally.

It is to be remembered that millions of human brains, which begin to atrophy even before we arrive on terra firma, from an aquatic environment of the amniotic fluid[56], of our mothers’ wombs. This itself, is indeed an arduous journey, for humans, after a gestational period[57] of embryonic development of 40, long, Gregorian weeks[58], in the comfort of the uterus, in female phenotype of the human beings. raise a profound point – the journey we each embark on as individual consciousnesses finding expression through biological bodies is truly remarkably arduous if we contemplate it.  The growth of a human mind and personality through the complex transformation from notions to embryonic form to infant to young adult shaped by both nature and nurture is remarkably fascinating. And over a relatively brief life span, the attainment of knowledge, cultivation of wisdom and skill, the joys and tribulations of the mortal experience, all intensely profound. Reference to the human condition, across the arc of life’s passage, through a brief, though intensely poignant mortal existence, is humbling. It brings solidarity with the shared plight we each face in our respective modalities of being, to manifest our highest purpose within the constraints of a form while harmonic with collective order of inner and outer peace, or intrinsic and extrinsic peace.  Yet we as human continually strive to destroy this attempt for other who are striving to achieve this synchrony with the universe and in the process slowly, progressively and ultimately destroy ourselves.  There is however, poetry in the time each human spends walking paths of potential peace or pain, which we have to traverse through the inevitable cycle of life, before reaching our elusive final destination of eternal peace.


In concluding, the author extends his warm wishes to all our Transcend Media Family, for the Christmas, to those of members who are observing this period as a solemn spiritual occasion and he wishes others a safe, healthy, prosperous Festive Season. The author also records and extends a word of caution, with reference to dietary indiscretion, which is customary during the local feasts of Saturnalia, even without the accompanying, traditional, drunken debauchery of Saturnalia in Ancient Rome, with respect.  Disciplined dietary discretion and medical compliance is extremely important in patients who have aberrant lifestyle generated, Non-Communicable Diseases[59],[60],[61],[62] and complications, thereof which have a higher prevalence during the Festive Seasons of different cultural and religious groups, as statistically documented.

Enter the Giants of Peace Propagation, around 2800 years apart.
Photo Left:  The Great Rishi Yajnavalkya from the 7th Century BC., India.
Photo Right: The Great Originator of the Modern Peace Theory: Professor Johan Galtung, Norway.
Note: Both, Rishi Yajnavalkya and Professor Johan Galtung are depicted, as looking to their left, in disgust, at the ongoing Peace Disruptions, generated by Humanity in the 21st century.


[1] Personal quote by author, December 2023































































Professor G. Hoosen M. Vawda (Bsc; MBChB; PhD.Wits) is a member of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace Development Environment.
Director: Glastonbury Medical Research Centre; Community Health and Indigent Programme Services; Body Donor Foundation SA.

Principal Investigator: Multinational Clinical Trials
Consultant: Medical and General Research Ethics; Internal Medicine and Clinical Psychiatry:UKZN, Nelson R. Mandela School of Medicine
Executive Member: Inter Religious Council KZN SA
Public Liaison: Medical Misadventures
Activism: Justice for All

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This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 25 Dec 2023.

Anticopyright: Editorials and articles originated on TMS may be freely reprinted, disseminated, translated and used as background material, provided an acknowledgement and link to the source, TMS: The Forgotten (Part 6): The Pillars of Peace Propagators, from Yajnavalkya in Antiquity to Johan Galtung Today, is included. Thank you.

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