Restorative justice, generally defined as a system of criminal justice that focuses on rehabilitation and reconciliation, approaches positive relationships with others as vital to human existence and well being. Whereas conventional judicial proceedings focus on what laws have been broken, restorative justice focuses on people, their needs, and underlying causes of the offense. The Ubuntuworks Project looks to restorative justice as a main principle for carrying out the teachings of Ubuntu.
The Ubuntuworks Resource Hub provides organizations and individuals with data, stories, studies and support for a more connected and compassionate world.
“The Project for Integrating Spirituality, Law, and Politics (PISLAP) is an international network of lawyers, law professors, law students, legal workers, and others who are seeking to develop a new spiritualy informed approach to law and social change.
PISLAP is founded on the belief that all human beings yearn for a world of love and real human connection, where we can live meaningful lives and fully recognize each other’s humanity. We believe that there exists a universal spiritual bond that transcends any religious, cultural, or social differences. To make manifest this spiritual bond that unites us, we envision the creation of a legal culture which:
- Fosters empathy, compassion, and mutual understanding;
- Sees the resolution of conflict as an opportunity to awaken us to a deeper understanding of the dignity and value of all peoples; and
- Affirms the integrity of the individual as well as the importance of fostering social responsibility, environmental awareness, and the creation of a loving, just, and sustainable world.”
What PISLAP does:
- Encourage contemplative practices to support and strengthen social movement work
- Transform legal education
- Transform law practice
- Promote Restorative Justice and Restorative Practices
- Implement PISLAP community/network
- Promote advocacy
“The Project for Integrating Spirituality, Law, and Politics (PISLAP) emerged from a gathering of 1,800 social activists who attended the first ‘Politics of Meaning’conference in Washington, D.C. in the spring of 1996. This conference grew out of the work of Rabbi Michael Lerner, editor of Tikkun magazine, and Peter Gabel, law professor and PISLAP co-chair, and was based on the idea that progressive social change required a new vision of human beings—one based not only on people’s material economic needs but also on our common spiritual longing to live in a loving and socially connected society in which we could fully recognize and affirm one another’s humanity. At that conference, 50 of us who were lawyers and law professors, law students and legal workers, first came together to form what initially became the ‘Law Task Force’ of the new Politics of Meaning movement to seek to bring this new spiritually-informed vision of social and legal activism into existence…”
To learn more about PISLAP, its history, philosophy, and founder, visit http://www.spiritlawpolitics.org/mission-history-and-philosophy
Photo: Ryan Hutton