Most people would agree that violence is wrong and should be stopped. The problem is that violence is forceful and stopping something often means using force. In regards to the issue of stopping violence we must endeavor to not violently try to stop violence. How do we neutralize the force of violence? In physics, Force = Mass X Acceleration. Mass is the essence of the material world. Most spiritual teachers speak of the need to live less materialistic lives and to separate our beings from materialism. Many wars and many fights are fought over things and putting people before things can go a long way to helping to curb materialistic violence.
If we wish to “stop” violence but wish to do so without doing so forcefully, we need to be sure that we do not cause situations to escalate. Many spiritualistic virtues are designed to help us with this. The virtue of nonviolence is an obvious one but before a situation becomes violent many times an ego is put down in some manner. Being insulted may lead someone to react to the force of the comment with a more aggressive force of violent action for example.
One of the best things a person can do to mitigate the violence in the world is to be themselves a good example for others. The master Jesus told his disciples that if someone struck them on their cheek that they should then turn to them their other cheek. Jesus did not stop at physical violence knowing that other situations can escalate to violence as can be discerned when he also said that if someone threatened them and demanded their robe that they should offer the aggressor their undergarment as well. Non-spiritually minded individuals will not understand this behavior and will most likely mock it as weakness. If your journey has lead you a vast distance and the destination you have been seeking for so long is on the path through the valley and over the next hill, would you really squabble with the vagabonds who try to rob you in the valley? Do not resist evil with evil, realize that the unmanifest is a fabulous part of your destiny.
Any true religion will recognize the value of love, nonviolence, kindness, and mercy. When man deviates from these virtues people are led astray. If we all lived in a world that did not resort to violence intellect would flourish even more as we would resort to debate before reaching for the gun. These principles would guide our intellect and lead to the the much sought after virtue of the wise, wisdom. Many cultures have what can appear to be a culture of violence even if they do not realize it, declaring a war on poverty, a war on terror, and a war on drugs to name a few. This creates perpetual war against objects that are difficult to define let alone win a war against. These are challenges that we as a human race must address but in the age of information we have access to much wisdom from diverse groups. Whether that be the wisdom of the master Jesus or the wisdom of the master Lao Tzu when he said, “Violence, even well intentioned, always rebounds upon oneself.” Be a beacon on the path to peace and our future will be bright indeed.