A film by Michelle Moore.

36th Avenue in the Fruitvale district of East Oakland, California, is the turf of four major gangs. The fourth one, according to Pancho Ramos-Stierle, who is one of the anchors of Casa de Paz (House of Peace), is the police, an institutionalized gang, and the most dangerous. Yet the residents of this house never lock their doors. Casa de Paz is part of a group of several homes that form an intentional community of peace and nonviolence in an area rife with structural and physical violence. In order to serve their community, they sit in receptive silence at least two hours a day and they live with the people - laugh with them, cry with them, and eat with them. They embody "giftivism" - practicing radical acts of generosity that changes the world, one heart, one home, one block at a time.


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  • Vinod

    All my love to these deeds!

  • Dae-ah

    What you believe in and know should be put into action. Actual practice of what you believe in and know is the key to all. It inspired me and reminded me that 'put it into action' is the key to making this world a better place to live!!! Thanks to all the volunteers and participants at Casa de Paz. They are the ones who bring the good energy and positive spirit to all.

  • Kay

    So inspiring! Can we imagine pockets of communities all over the world like this? What would the word look like?

  • Greg Acuna

    Really inspiring. Hoping to visit some day.

  • Sheila Edwards

    The beautiful smiling face of the man with dreadlocks was inspiring and the way that these people have committed to changing their community through peaceful actions

  • Admin

    Those wishing to join the Friday meditations at Casa de Paz may RSVP here: http://www.awakin.org/local/oakland/

  • puneet

    Please share the Rsvp link for evening meditation at casa de paz. We would like to attend.

  • Judy

    everything my heart opened wide! I want to replicate this act of giving in some manner. Blessings

  • Lin

    A piece certain of my long forgotten dream...for the 1st 20 years of my adulthood, I thought turning each residential block into intentional community was THE answer to everything that ails us. Obsessed I guess. My physical design idea was to remove the alleys, building community gardens in the merged back yards. Then communally purchase an empty house on the block & make it the communal dining hall. Then I moved to the city and my new friend said to my idea "I would not want to get that close to some of my neighbors". A foreign concept for me since I was a flower child from small mountain towns where oneness is just how it was by nature. But a little time in the city made me "realize he was right"...best to keep a certain distance from some folks...a lotta folks. So I am over the moon to see this group forging thru the distance keeping iissue. I say they are the bravest spiritual warriors and I hope their army grows. This soundsto like Quaker style social action. Which brings to mindand movement the enormous spiritual commune movement in the US during the 1800's. But a lot of that so was about separating from the harsh world. I so would love tothe go apprentice with these folks awhile!!

  • Patrick

    Activism with Wisdom and Compassion!! Sweet and Positive!!

  • Nancy

    Seeing people who know that one by one we can transform our world!

  • Otis

    The poem featured in this amazing tribute is called, All the Time in the World, and it is by Anthony Manousos It takes all the time in the world to enter the water and the wind wholly, to let fall the imaginary boundaries and return to the source and the destination. It takes infinite patience to be the forest, to cry with the chickadees and crawl with the ants, to stalk with the cat, and forage with the bear, to let the slow, timeless sap flow through your branches, and feel roots and tubers pierce you like a lover... Nothing begins or ends here: there is only the circle, widening, calling back its own. When you walk the path, you must be the path. Do not be proud. Even the centipede knows this. Everything that you touch changes and changing, changes you. Everything you think fill the air with its smell. As you build you tipi or your city, remember that knowledge and skills cannot save you. When night falls, you must be the night. When day breaks, you too must be broken.

  • Deborab

    Many things started in the USA and spread throughout the world I am hopeful and working so we can start here the shift that will inspire everyone to be a rebel for kindness Thank you

  • Sheila Donis

    When I visited Casa de Paz, I felt like I was with true human beings -- generous, loving, kind and affectionate. Their greatness is evidenced in their small yet courageous practices. As they "walk" with the community, their compassion explodes and shines deep within all who meet them. I will always treasure this place, this space, this home of beauty.

  • steve zimmett

    Sick and tired of violence, What a great story to live by.Yet the residents of Casa de Paz never lock their doors,what a great way to live

  • Sydney

    It takes courage, along with compassion to do this, and to me, these are the real heroes in our nation. I am inspired to say the least.

  • Patricia Amazon Muldrow Roberts

    I was overcome with gratitude to see and feel the commitment of the people to revive community. i liked the principles, diversity and feeling of compassion of love. What an amazing endeavor. I pray it spreads like wild fire across the land.

  • Kathy

    Thank you, Casa de Paz, for being a light for other hearts. I am grateful for you. I broke in half when I heard the gentleman quote a line from a poem..."Everything that you touch changes, and changing changes you." Change, and not good ones, have seemed to chart a path for me for some time now. Those changes seem to have propelled me a direction I don't want to go, and I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one having this experience. I think, we sort of allow that to happen somehow. Hearing the gentleman speak those words, in the context of what you all are offering, has created a welcomed shift in my perspective this morning. Again, I am grateful. Actually, more than grateful. I couldn't understand the poet's name and would love to have that information, as well as the entire poem, if someone could share that with me.

  • sara


  • Suz

    It brought me back to when I lived in communities like that! Now I try to practice that in my business corporation. But sometimes that's hard. Thanks for creating a yearning (in me) for seeking more of that.

  • Maria

    The whole idea of community...of giving back..of self less service. I began to cry when I watched this video...knowing and feeling the heart connection to your story, your vision. Beautiful. Soulful. Inspiring. Thank you for sharing. Om Shanti.

  • Kristin Pedemonti

    Indeed, look for the light and amplify it. Serve the people BE with the people. Everything that you touch changes. Every interactions changes us. <3 Through dependence they nurtured it each other and when you serve you create community. Giftivism changes the world; it connects us one to another. It happens one heart, one house, one block at a time! LOVE, thank you so much for sharing your powerful story and YES you are changing the fabric of your community and inspiring others too! HUG from my heart to yours!

  • ruta

    I cnat wait to be a part of something beautiful like this!

  • Patti

    So so beautiful… I loved the phrase near the beginning of the video: "Look for the light and amplify…"

  • Melanie

    I saw genuine people who wanted to change their lives and the quality life of their community. This changes is greater impact than changes in the law.

  • Kami

    This is a wonderful idea, however, I hope they understand one thing: “As long as men massacre animals, they will kill each other. Indeed, he who sows the seeds of murder and pain cannot reap joy and love.” - Pythagorus

  • Anne

    Everybody makes a difference, one step at a time within their own sphere of influence.

  • Kristi

    I was drawn toward the energy of the child in the video. She was so connected and engaged in the community and clearly had a sense of purpose and belonging. I believe that children are often indicators of how well a community or household is doing. If they are not thriving, often the adults in their lives are struggling. It is beautiful to see the child at Casa de Paz surrounded by peace and love. I also liked what was said toward the end...get out and do something helpful, like picking up garbage or giving away fruit. It's a good way to meet people in your community. Yes!

  • Rose

    This video shows an inspired group of people pushing for radical peace and connection. Great images of the environment, was the food that Casa de Paz grows free for the neighborhood? Very cool energetic and practical transformation that Pancho and Adelaja are spearheading.

  • Nilam

    So inspiring and simple act to adopt! Touch one heart at a time ... Love one home at a time and serve one community at a time and we all can bring peace in this world !!! Thank you Pancho!!!!

  • Grace

    It makes me realize that the only kind of revolution that has a chance to succeed is NOT the kind that turns the pyramid upside down because when those on the bottom move up to the top, quite often they in turn end up like those they put down. We need a revolution of "networking" where we all can work together to bring about a world that is better for ALL not just a few. Then justice will belong to everyone and perhaps peace will stand a chance. Each of us needs to take responsibility to stand/speak up for those who can't do that for themselves in our little piece of the world where we find ourselves.All of creation needs to work in harmony.

  • Missy

    I like the point he made about the spiritual people doing more service and getting out there and the other people getting more spiritual!

  • Brian

    Thanks Guys...Amen. "Look 4 the light and amplify it"..."Sick and tired of violence"..."When you serve, you create community"! "Inner and outer revolution...the human spirit".."Giftivism"...!!! "Radical acts of generosity to change the world"!!!"Go from Empire to Earth community" "One heart at a time"! God bless this mission!!!! Amen!!! Peace...

  • Harpreet

    Maybe you could take some food over to the Police Station and see what happens?

  • Christine Teale

    It describes how things ought to be! People not needing to lock their doors, etc. The residents of Casa de Paz are winning through right now! I just hope that the peace and non-violence will continue, and will indeed, last for ever!!

  • Franki Gifts

    How these people live their beliefs! Living from their hearts every moment of their lives!

  • Dr.G.Thangarajesh

    Good video. Good message for the world torn by conflicts. I like the term giftivism which I think sure to remove negativism from the earth. Spiritual people have to become activist and vice-versa. Good idea.

  • Leo T. Garcia

    Great message! Let's keep this momentum going!

  • Prajna

    Everything. I loved the energy of the people in this community. Very inspiring.

  • Susan Tixier

    That there is something going on -- evolution, perhaps -- that this is an expression of, and that gives me hope for the future!

  • Sundi

    oh, how I would love to join you in this beautiful experience! Thank you!

  • NG

    Llena de paz! Gracias por compartirlo y bendiciones!

  • Cindy

    Everything, what a lovely community. I can dig it. I think the USA is heading towards this kind of living, simple, pure and it makes so much sense, less stress, less material things and it saves the environment. Plus better sleep and better communications with God, I am impressed. Can I come down and live there too? Blessings, CS

  • allan

    absolutely!! love this !! soooo much wisdom here!! thank you zoo much !! I will come to visit soon !!

  • Paco Sánchez Molina

    "Spiritual people need to become activists". Precise. Buen trabajo Pancho.

  • Margaret

    Thanks Pancho and community, for spreading the Spirituality on 'Oneness' the much needed for our time, where everything is devided your's and mine. May the Peace/Shalom/Salam/Shanti you spread reach and create ripples of kindness and oneness among the Nathions! I give thanks to God to you all, for the Good works . Pope Francis says, "We shall meet one another doing good" you are already practicing it much before Pope Francis. lovingly, Margaret (Maggie) from India

  • sheetal

    Love can change the world, one heart at a time, one home at a time, one block at a time!

  • veltamara

    Thanks guys. I can't wait to visit.

  • Sher

    Beautiful, thank you for what you do.

  • Geoff

    I have heard of Casa de Paz from my SS friends but what a treat to walk through it with everyone. Thank you so much for sharing this so that us not in the neighborhood can still feel your neighborhood of peace and love!

  • Pancho

    Yep, the third major (institutionalized)gang, the most dangerous one, in my opinion, for it is less accountable, is the police. And our gang, well, is the Peace Gang! ;-)

  • Page 1

  • Read more about Pancho Ramos Stierle, now known worldwide as one of the men arrested for meditating to reduce the growing tension between the police and protesters during Occupy Oakland.
  • Casa de Paz is part of the Canticle Farm community. Learn more about the founders, their philosophy, and the practices that anchor the community.
  • Who constitutes your community? How can you better nourish and support each other?

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