This project emerged from the Mind and Life 2018 PEACE grant to Professor Levit-Binnun, where the MtC mindfulness-informed conflict transformation program was tested in the context of discussions on controversial issues in schools. Nufoth Al Qalawi, who joined the research project as a Palestinian pedagogy expert and facilitator, will now bring this contemplative approach to the Bedouin community in the south of Israel, the most marginalized sub-group of the Palestinian-Arab minority in the country. Stemming from longitudinal discrimination this community suffers from multiple social and economic hardships, resulting in high levels of conflict and violence. We aim to empower leadership teams in two schools to learn and practice the MtC approach, and then create a comprehensive program to assimilate it within the whole school community. Introducing the cultivation of mindfulness and prosocial qualities into such conflict-ridden environments will result in the increased capability of stakeholders to resolve conflicts peacefully.

Organization Implementing the Project

Mind the Conflict (MtC) is a contemplative peacebuilding initiative based on a novel combination of knowledge and praxis from the fields of mindfulness, social psychology, conflict transformation, and non-violent communication. We work in educational settings and the public sphere, both in Israel and Palestine, to support people in dealing constructively with interpersonal conflicts, intergroup dialogue, and discussions on controversial issues. We aspire to enable individuals and groups to become aware of the conflict mindset, which underlies and aggravates many conflict situations, and transform it into a reconciliation mindset. Our model enables people to moderate their automatic reactions in conflict and adopt new perspectives and tools that lead to understanding, fruitful cooperation, and the enhancement of positive relations. MtC is affiliated with the Muda Institute for Mindfulness, Science, and Society at Reichman University, headed by Prof. Nava Levit Bennun. Nufoth Al Qalawi is the Palestinian coordinator of the initiative.