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Anchor Concept: Conflict (PDF File)

CONFLICT

Conflict arises when members of a group do not share the same view of a situation and must struggle towards achieving justice. Conflict can also take place when a group cannot find a way to satisfy the needs of all its members; some conflicts take place between different groups of people. Human persons were created to live in community, and conflict is a natural part of the process of striving to live a common life that is just for all. Conflicts are often centred around opinions and issues that have to do with rights, needs, power and resources. Conflict frequently evokes powerful emotional responses which are a natural part of our humanity. Very often, these responses help us recognize problems and needs that demand to be justly addressed; in this way, conflict can be a good thing. By identifying the causes of a conflict, we can struggle to remedy them in fair and just ways that safeguard the common good. For Christians, ongoing strategies that involve respectful and nonviolent negotiation - be it between persons, groups or in the legal system- are always to be preferred to open hostility and war.

Related Concepts:

PEACE
VIOLENCE / NON-VIOLENCE
CAUSATION
VICTIM
SELF-INTEREST
BIAS / FRAME OF REFERENCE
NEGOTIATION / COMPROMISE
PROTEST / DEMONSTRATION
DIALOGUE
PREFERENTIAL OPTION FOR THE POOR
COOPERATION / COLLABORATION
POWERLESSNESS
RESOLUTION
COMMON GOOD

Corresponding Ontario Catholic School Graduate Expectations:
CGE1d Develops attitudes and values founded on Catholic social teaching and acts to promote social responsibility, human solidarity and the common good
CGE1h Respects the faith traditions, world religions and the life-journeys of all people of good will
CGE1j Recognizes that "sin, human weakness, conflict and forgiveness are part of the human journey" and that the cross, the ultimate sign of forgiveness is at the heart of redemption. (Witnesses to Faith)
CGE3c Thinks reflectively and creatively to evaluate situations and solve problems
CGE4a Demonstrates a confident and positive sense of self and respect for the dignity and welfare of others
CGE4b Demonstrates flexibility and adaptability
CGE5a Works effectively as an interdependent team member
CGE7a Acts morally and legally as a person formed in Catholic traditions
CGE7b Accepts accountability for one's own actions
CGE7c Seeks and grants forgiveness
CGE7e Witnesses Catholic social teaching by promoting equality, democracy, and solidarity for a just, peaceful and compassionate society
CGE7f Respects and affirms the diversity and interdependence of the world's peoples and cultures;
CGE7g Respects and understands the history, cultural heritage and pluralism of today's contemporary society
CGE7j Contributes to the common good