At anti-Trump rallies across the US in the days following his inauguration in January, the slogan "love trumps hate" was much in evidence. This simple phrase captures much of the spirit of the opposition to the likes of US President Donald Trump and other right-wing, nationalistic forces that appear to be on the rise across the world. The sentiment is firmly rooted in the Buddhist philosophy that "hatred never ceases by hatred but by love alone is healed. This is an ancient and eternal law." All humans know intuitively that hatred and violence are something to be avoided. There is a reason why so many books and films have been dedicated to capturing the horrors of the Holocaust or the massacres in Rwanda or the drug trade in South America. The subtext is always "let’s not go there again". And if such universal laws are too airy-fairy for the rationalists, there is a numbers-based argument. The global peace index, which seeks to quantify peace and its benefits in 163 states and terri...

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