Stories to Inspire You
ISBN: 978-82-300-0890-4
Year: 2013

Price: 10 €
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Stories to Inspire You

This is a collection of short stories with lessons for life, assembled by Dietrich Fischer and illustrated by Altynay Baihodjoeva.

We typically hear news about war and violence, human failures and folly, accidents and natural disasters, sometimes about poverty and destruc- tion of the environment. It is important to be aware of these problems, but they are not everything. The media seems to have turned around the old saying, «no news is good news» into «good news is no news.» But as the golfer Tiger Woods once said, «I learn more from my best shots than from my mistakes.» This is a collection of some successes, of what individuals have been able to do to make life more worthwhile, of bringing peace and happiness to others. They are intended to encourage everyone to try their best.

Dietrich Fischer, born 1941 in Münsingen, Switzerland, is Academic Director of the World Peace Academy in Basel and Director of the TRANSCEND University Press. He got his Ph.D. in Computer Science from New York University 1976 and a Licentiate in Mathematics from the University of Bern 1968. 1986-88 he was a MacArthur Fellow in International Peace and Security at Princeton University. He has taught mathematics, computer science, economics and peace studies at various universities and been a consultant to the United Nations.

Altynai Baihodjoeva was born in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. She is a freelance artist. Studying and traveling throughout Europe. She holds MA in Peace and Conflict Studies at European Peace University. Altynai is working with organizations focusing on countering transnational organized crime and countering terrorism. Altynai volunteered for an Organization for Friend- ship in Diversity in Malta, non-profit organization that works in the field of inclusion and diversity with promoting values of cultural understanding, respect, communication and friendship in the society. She is continuing her Master’s Programme at the University of Vienna in the field of Economics.

This is the sixth publication from TRANSCEND University Press Popular.

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Stories to Inspire You

collected by Dietrich Fischer with original illustrations by Altynay Baihodjoeva

Contents

Foreword
Queen Victoria and Prince Albert
Saint Francis and the Wolf
A Binational Zone
How Haiti Abolished Its Military
Demilitarizing Panama
Turning Enemies Into Allies
The Black Hole
On the Historic Role of the Peace Movement
The Origins of Peace Research
Peace Research Is Value-Oriented
An Active Peace Policy
How Switzerland Ended Its Involvement in War
Women Preventing War
A Joke Can Release Tension
Humor Defeating the Law About Conscientious Objectors
The Camera Is Mightier Than the Sword
Peace Is the Way
Heaven and Hell
A Key to Heaven and Hell
World Law
The Burlington 23
Replacing Bullets With Ballots
Self-Determination and Peace
Bishop Desmond Tutu
Amy Biehl
Reconciliation in Bosnia
Meeting With a Prime Minister
Teaching Leadership for Peace
Prevented From Speaking
Responsibility
Holding Officials Accountable
Random Inspections
Keeping a Secret
Steven Spielberg
Nonviolent Communication
Expressing Needs
Asking a Favor
Let It Cool Down
Sheherazade
How Venice Was Saved
The Power of . nonviolence
Satyagraha
Peace Journalism
A Buddhist Bookstore
Put Out the Fire Before it is Too Late
Opportunity Creation
Picking Berries
A Snowflake
A Warm Room
Buckminster Fuller
World Game
Force
Structural Violence
Conflict and Cooperation
Effect of Germany's Occupation on Norway
A Lake Without Fish
Numbness
The Milgram Experiment
A Butcher Knife
Killing Babies
Bisons and Bears
The Robber Baron
The End of Dueling
The Origins of European Unification
Lucky Coincidence
Alexander Yakovlev
Costa Rica Prospers Without a Military
Offering Help
A New Friendship
Jack
The Art of Listening
Respect Can Heal
Words Can Save Lives
Mother's Love
Kindness Rewarded
The Beggar
The Happy Hermit
Fishing
Home is Heaven
How Much Land Do We Need?
The Lion and the Mouse
A Wild Flower
Whom to Help?
Diogenes
Mango Trees
100 Pigs
The Stolen Horse
Misunderstanding
The "Greedy" Monk
What Really Counts
Gandhi's Shoes
Danilo Dolci
The Leaking Pot
Daniel Jeanrichard
Making Globalization Work for All
Global Cooperation
Starfish
Two Brothers
Self-Sacrifice
Forgiveness
Catching Monkeys
Why Criticism Fails
Self-reliance
Be Yourself
Circus Elefants
Learned Helplessness
Play With the Hand You Got
Fear Can Kill
The Black Belt
Patience
How Sarvodaya Was Founded
A Big and a Small Dog
Rufus Jones
Economic principles
The Good in Short Supply
Price Controls
Paprika
Sail and Rudder
Thales of Miletus
Vilfredo Pareto
China's Glory Project
Respect
Cherries
Education
Improving Rural Health
Louis Pasteur
Learning Early
Building a Fire
Letting a Flower Bloom
If I Had My Children to Raise Over Again
Family
Carl Friedrich Gauss
Insights Emerge From Dialogues
Leadership
The Nevada-Semipalatinsk Anti-Nuclear Movement
Nelson Mandela
Our Fate Is in Our Hands
Wisdom and Stupidity
Speak Up!
Martin Niemoeller
Sermon on the Mount
Love Me, You Scoundrel!
Khrushchev and Stalin
Keeping One's Mouth Shut
Three Frogs
The Model Inmate
Changing Perceptions on Homosexuality
Oppression Breeds Secrecy
Leprosy
Dogs as Teachers
Seven Men and an Elefant
The Whole Truth
Framing Questions
A Farmer and His Horse
All Is to the Best
How a Loss Can Turn Into a Gain
A Best Selling Author
Smoke Signal
Thrust Into Freedom
The Happy Shepherd
Cheer Up
Follow Your Heart
Politeness
Emil and the Kitten
The Healing Poison
The Tiger's Whisker
Cultural Differences
The Appetite Clinic
Lost in Translation
Reading
A Broken Piece of China
The Dull Ax
Big Rocks
The Twenty-Ninth Day
An Immodest Wish
The Olive Jar
Corals
The Oak Tree and the Reed
A Million Frogs
The Donkey in the Well
Two Frogs
Sunshine
Family Tradition
Pay Attention
Attribution
Bureaucracy
A Butterfly
True Help
Flying Lessons
Forgiven and Forgotten
Hidden Gems
Cultivating Grass
Greed
Accept Help
Hot Water
The Joy of volunteering
Making Health Care Available to All
The King of Birds
Appreciation
Leadership
Two Lizards
Majority Rule
Saving a Marriage
Commuters
A Marriage Sealed in Heaven
How a Town Fought Hate
A Glass of Milk
Reaching the Top
The Mouse Trap
Rehabilitating Prisoners
Alfred Nobel
Common Ground
Peace is Like an Olive Tree
Rosa Parks
Be Like a Pencil
Sidney Poitier
The Raft
Different Customs
Who Is Right?
Security Versus Peace Discourse
The Seed
An Angel
Improve Yourself
Camp David
Compassion
Keeping Peace in Transsylvania
Unwelcome Help
Clean Water
Be Grateful
Honesty
Criticism
Dare to Change
Dedication

The Good Friday Agreement
True Skill
The German-Danish Border
The Fishbowl
Creating Harmony at Work
Rewarding Innovation
Getting Rid of a Nightmare
The Satchel
Exporting Shoes
Solomon's Judgment
Comfort
Saving Lives

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Stories to Inspire You

collected by Dietrich Fischer with original illustrations by Altynay Baihodjoeva

Foreword

We typically hear news about war and violence, human failures and folly, accidents and natural disasters, sometimes about poverty and destruction of the environment. It is important to be aware of these problems, but they are not everything. The media seems to have turned around the old saying, "no news is good news" into "good news is no news." But as the golfer Tiger Woods once said, "I learn more from my best shots than from my mistakes."

This is a collection of some successes, of what individuals have been able to do to make life more worthwhile, of bringing peace and happiness to others. They are intended to encourage everyone to try their best.

I have been inspired by Johan Galtung, who pointed out that children should not only learn stories about war and victory in war, but instead about successful conflict transformation and the solution of problems, to prepare them for life.

This short volume also includes some metaphors. Analogies and metaphors make use of something already familiar to explain something new, or less considered. Here is an example:

A monkey picked up a fish from the sea and put it on a tree branch. Asked why he did this, he said, "To save it from drowning".

We know immediately how wrong and stupid that is. But we may seldom realize that trying to impose our own way of life, political or economic institutions or religious beliefs on others is equally wrong. Such an analogy can help open our eyes.

I did not invent all those stories. I heard or read them over many years, selected those that I liked most, and have retold them in my own words, to the best of my memory. Where I remember the source, I have indicated it.

I hope you enjoy some of these stories, and can find some useful lessons in them.

Basel, April 2013    Dietrich Fischer

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert had a quarrel, as it occasionally happens in a marriage. One word led to another, and suddenly Prince Albert angrily stormed out of the bedroom, went to his study, slammed the door and locked it. Queen Victoria ran after him, knocked on the door and demanded, "Open!" There was no answer. She pounded the door with her fist and shouted, "Open at once!!" No answer. She shouted at the top of her voice, "I am the Queen of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland, the Empress of India and of the entire British Commonwealth, I am the Commander‑in‑Chief of all the British armed forces, and I order you hereby to open this door!!!" Still no answer. Finally she said in a soft voice, "Albert, I am sorry, I love you and miss you." Now the door opened.

This shows that nonviolence is more powerful than violence.

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