The Mighty Heart in Action

By Dr. Scilla Elworthy.

Did you know…

That when you listen deeply to someone who is angry or aggressive, it will be transformative for both of you?

That the Inner Critic, which constantly nags at you and tells you you’re not good enough, can become your ally and your guide in changing the world?

That you can make faster and better decisions with your heart than with your head?

That inner work multiplies the effectiveness of your work in the world?


What you will find in this book

PART ONE takes us through 10 skills that are fundamentally useful in enabling us to find the energy of our own passion, to communicate effectively, to address our fears and self-doubt, to balance right- and left-brain intelligence, and to develop the presence and the inner power needed to reach out across difference. These are the skills that enable us to change the world, to build a safer world, one person at a time.

You will learn and practice these personal skills which are NECESSARY for the prevention and resolution of conflict. But we also know that in themselves they are NOT SUFFICIENT to deliver political change. Why? Because to change the world, a person needs to know how to apply these skills in the situations they want to change.

Therefore, PART TWO of this book is designed to assist and support you in becoming, step by step, a very effective agent of change. We raise the questions that will probably crop up at each stage of your progress, and suggest how you might respond. This is to help you develop your own personal mastery of applying these skills, systematically, to bring about change – whether it be locally at home, in the community, in the workplace, or even between governments.

PART THREE sets all this in a much broader context, asking how humanity got into this mess and what are the deeper problems now facing us. People need to find the threads that can weave a safer future. You will find vibrant living examples of these threads, and indicators of plenty more. Each one of us has within us the imagination for building the kind of future there could be, so you’re invited to see how your own hunches are stimulated, to think about your own possible role in that future.


“Ever wonder what it takes to be a peacemaker? The answer is The Mighty Heart. It begins with the amazing capacity of the human for compassion‚ and moving forward with self-understanding. Filled with stirring examples of how conflict turns into understanding or peace‚ this is a book you will always want within easy reach to refer to again and again.”

Judith Cunningham‚ Chief Strategic Officer‚ Montessori Model United Nations

“These skills have been invaluable to those of us working with teams all over the world. We have been guided in our inner work to discover our purpose and passion. We have gained the courage to be honest, found reliable ways of confronting our anxieties, and the ability to transform the conflicts that inevitably arise in a troubled and highly complex world.”

Dirk Van Onsem, Vice President Emea Key Sport Partners, Nike Inc.

About the author

Three times Nobel Peace Prize nominee for her work with Oxford Research Group to develop effective dialogue between nuclear weapons policy-makers worldwide and their critics.

She now leads The Business Plan for Peace to help prevent violent conflict and build sustainable peace throughout the world‚ because it is possible; based on her latest books The Business Plan for Peace: Building a World Without War (2017) and The Mighty Heart: how to transform conflict (2020)‚ now an on-line course.

Scilla founded Peace Direct in 2002 to fund‚ promote and learn from local peace-builders in conflict areas‚ was awarded the Niwano Peace Prize in 2003‚ the Luxembourg Peace Prize in 2020 and advised Peter Gabriel‚ Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Sir Richard Branson in setting up ‘The Elders’. Her TED talk on nonviolence has been viewed by over 1‚500‚000 people on TED Global and YouTube.

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Working with Scilla

5 students, young peace builders and activists talk about their experience working with Scilla: what they learned, what impact it had on their life and how they integrated their knowledge into their everyday routine.

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