For over twenty years, Gene Hoffman engaged in efforts to seek out the deep, psychological causes of violence and to help bring about healing and reconciliation through a process she named “Compassionate Listening.” This carefully edited collection of her writings sheds light on Gene’s approach to peacemaking and conflict resolution, and invites readers along on a spiritual journey that she aptly calls “a peace pilgrim’s progress to inner healing.” This first edition was edited by Anthony Manousos, who authored the Pendle Hill pamphlets Spiritual Linkage with Russians: The Story of a Leading (PHP #301) and Living the Peace Testimony: The Legacy of Howard and Anna Brinton (PHP #372).
About the Author(s)
Gene Knudsen Hoffman had careers in theatre, radio, writing, psychology and peace. She joined the Religious Society of Friends in 1950 at Orange Grove Meeting, Pasadena (CA) and later became a member of the Santa Barbara Meeting. She had seven sons and daughters.
Gene worked with the Fellowship of Reconciliation for decades after joining in 1951. From 1983-89 she worked to improve US-USSR relations, seeking to put a human face on the Soviets for Americans. From 1989 her peacemaking efforts involved the Middle East.
Gene wrote Ways Out: The Book of Changes for Peace (John Daniel & Company, 1988), All Possible Surprises (Parallex Press, 1991), and Mideast Puzzle (Pax Christi, 1991) – all of which were forerunners to her Pendle Hill pamphlet, No Royal Road to Reconciliation (PHP #321). She helped to arrange Compassionate Listening sessions between Alaskan hunters and fishers and indigenous people through the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC). She published over a hundred articles as well as books, poems, and pamphlets and gave innumerable workshops and talks about peacemaking.