It seems to me that we have made God a being instead of Being itself. Both John Duns Scotus and Thomas Aquinas said “Deus est Ens,” or “God is existence itself.” That is the first name of God in the Book of Exodus (3:14), which could rightly be translated “I am Am-ness,” or perhaps as Acts of the Apostles puts it: “God is the one in whom we live, and move, and have our being” (17:28).
Being, or naked existence, is the one thing that we all are a part of. It seems the essential religious problem is that human beings suffer almost universally from a massive case of mistaken identity about their radical union with God. If we can break away from the illusion of our separateness then the rest follows rather clearly, and we can reconnect with our core identity. We are each a manifestation of that Universal and Divine Being, which then takes the form of angels, humans, animals, trees, water, and Earth itself. Until we recognize that inherent and shared sacredness, we have no philosophical or compelling basis for nonviolence.