I was born in 1969 and grew up in Canberra, Australia. My husband Robert J. Burrowes and I live in Daylesford, Victoria (and sometimes Melbourne) and we are both lifetime nonviolent activists and researchers. We study the nature of violence and nonviolence and have a particular interest in the deep psychological/emotional processes that help us to face, feel and remove the fear, powerlessness and self-hatred in our minds.
We believe in the unity of all life and have taken many nonviolent actions in accordance with this belief on issues related to peace, the environment and social justice. My acts of conscience (including a very personally challenging nonviolent action around the issue of my mother’s violence) have led to me being arrested seven times and imprisoned on four occasions. Each time I have been imprisoned, I have fasted (for four weeks on one occasion) until I received organically grown, vegetarian wholefood.
Robert is the author of The Strategy of Nonviolent Defense: A Gandhian Approach as well as over 100 published articles and is probably most ‘famous’ for taking 94 shovels (for a development project in Africa) to the tax office in 1986 in lieu of taxes for war. (He sometimes wishes this wasn’t the only thing people remembered about him! See Robert J. Burrowes for his biodata.) I am the author of ‘The Unbelievable Truth: The Paradoxical Nature of the Universal Mind’, a philosophical article that explains the creation, structure and function of the universe in terms of paradoxical logic and the terror of awareness of the truth.
We have three websites related to our most recent research and activism:
The People’s Charter to Create a Nonviolent World is designed to give voice to the millions of ordinary people around the world who want an end to war, oppression, environmental destruction and violence of all kinds. We hope that this Charter will support and unite the courageous nonviolent struggles of ordinary people all over the world.
The Flame Tree Project to Save Life on Earth is a 30 page document which outlines a grassroots strategy to save the planet, focusing on each person in industrialised countries finding ways to decrease their consumption of material resources gradually but very significantly over a period of 15 years while gradually increasing their self-reliance in a whole range of areas, including emotionally and in their capacity for nonviolent defence. It’s a project for those who know that deep change is necessary if we are to survive the many problems that currently threaten us.
Why Violence? is a 25 page document written by Robert that explains our understanding of the fundamental importance of adult violence against children, including unconscious and ‘invisible’ acts of violence, in creating the psychological dysfunctions that are at the heart of the violence of human beings in all other spheres. Much of this research was carried out by us both over a period of 14 years through intensive self-observation and reflection while living in seclusion, including a period of 6.5 years living in a tent in a forest in East Gippsland, Victoria, Australia.
Robert and I work voluntarily full time promoting our projects and currently live solely on gifts from people who wish to support us and/or our work. We are also technically ‘homeless’, living in temporary housesits and camping at Daylesford in between times.