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Archive for November, 2013

A Surprise Video on Gratitude, and More :)

KindSpring.org: Small Acts That Change the World

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For over a decade the KindSpring community has focused on inner transformation, while collectively changing the world with generosity, gratitude, and trust. We are 100% volunteer-run and totally non-commercial. KindSpring is a labor of love.

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“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust

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November 30, 2013

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space EditorEditor’s note: This week, we finished our 21 Day Gratitude Challenge and released this video. 0 budget, 6 days, just power of love. We’re grateful for all our partners, volunteers and community for spreading smiles in our world. Thank you. space
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Special Gift: A Music Video!

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Featured Kindness Stories

Story1 Before you celebrate your next birthday, check out what this guy did after he turned 51!
Story2 All she needed was a pen, a rock, and a head full of inspiration to make others happy.
Story3 Tired and hungry after not eating for over 12 hours, she still gave away her next meal.
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Idea of the Week

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Food for Your Soul: An Interview with Satish Kumar

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November 30, 2013

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Food for Your Soul: An Interview with Satish Kumar

Let there be work, bread, water and salt for all.

– -Nelson Mandela- –

Food for Your Soul: An Interview with Satish Kumar

“Food brings people together and nourishes not just their body but their soul, their mind and their spirit… That is why it is so important what kind of food you are eating. If you eat food that is tasteless, sprayed with chemicals and wrapped in plastic then your soul and spirit will not be nourished. We should eat wholesome food for a wholesome life.” These are the words of Satish Kumar, founder of the Small School in Hartland England, and someone who once walked 8,000 miles from India to America to deliver packets of peace tea to the leaders of the world’s then four nuclear powers. Read on to hear more insights into the power of baking and breaking bread together. { read more }

Be The Change

Find a time this week and bake and break some bread!

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A 15-Year-Old Homeless Artist Rocks the World

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November 29, 2013

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A 15-Year-Old Homeless Artist Rocks the World

The bird dares to break the shell, then the shell breaks open and the bird can fly openly. This is the simplest principle of success. You dream, you dare and and you fly.

– Israelmore Ayivor –

A 15-Year-Old Homeless Artist Rocks the World

Inocente is a talented, spirited, ambitious teenage artist. She is also homeless, living with her mother and younger brothers on the streets of San Diego. She knows that her life depends on her art — in more ways than we can imagine. This trailer for an award-winning documentary captures the dreams, fears, and inspiring resiliency of this remarkable young woman. { read more }

Be The Change

Spend a moment to appreciate the secret, hidden challenges that those around you may have battled to become who they are.

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My Neighbor Ray

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Video of the Week

Nov 28, 2013
My Neighbor Ray

My Neighbor Ray

At age 90, Raymond J. Cleveland takes no medications and is pain free. He eats everything he pleases; sees well, rests well and IS well. His neighbor, Michael Glassoff, curious about this man whose eyes radiated with light and who waved at anyone who passed by with deep affection, asked Ray where he finds this overflowing joy. Watch this interview to hear Ray share his practical pointers on how to live a life of joy, free from anger.
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Grateful: A Love Song to the World

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Video of the Week

Nov 28, 2013
Grateful: A Love Song to the World

Grateful: A Love Song to the World

Musicians Nimo Patel and Daniel Nahmod brought together dozens of people from around the world to create this beautiful, heart-opening melody. Inspired by the 21-Day Gratitude Challenge, the song is a celebration of our spirit and all that is a blessing in life. For the 21 Days, over 11,000 participants from 118 countries learned that âgratefulnessâ is a habit cultivated consciously and a muscle built over time. As a famous Roman, Cicero, once said, âGratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others.â This soul-stirring music video, created within a week by a team of volunteers, shines the light on all the small things that make up the beautiful fabric of our lives.
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What Is Gratitude?

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November 28, 2013

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What Is Gratitude?

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.

– Melody Beattie –

What Is Gratitude?

“Robert Emmons, perhaps the world’s leading scientific expert on gratitude, argues that gratitude has two key components, which he describes in a Greater Good essay, “Why Gratitude is Good.” { read more }

Be The Change

Plant seeds to cultivate your own grateful garden by writing a gratitude letter, or starting a gratitude journal.

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Grateful: A Love Song to the World

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November 27, 2013

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Grateful: A Love Song to the World

In ordinary life we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.

– Dietrich Bonhoeffer –

Grateful: A Love Song to the World

Inspired by the 21-Day Gratitude Challenge, talented musicians Nimo Patel and Daniel Nahmod brought together dozens of people from around the world to create this beautiful, heart-opening melody — a celebration of our spirit and all that is a blessing in life. For 21 Days, over 11,000 participants from 118 countries practiced exactly that, learning that ‘gratefulness’ is a habit cultivated consciously and a muscle built over time. This soul-stirring music video, created within a week by a team of volunteers, shines the light on all the small things that make up the beautiful fabric of our lives. { read more }

Be The Change

Share this video with family and friends today as a springboard to reflect collectively on all that each of you is grateful for.

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When You Listen To A Child

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November 26, 2013

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When You Listen To A Child

And when you believe your voice holds value … well, let’s just say, that belief can make a life changing difference.

– Rachel Macy Stafford –

When You Listen To A Child

“Having a parent that listens creates a child who believes he or she has a voice that matters in this world,” says Rachel Macy Stafford, a young mother who, in this digital age, has made the life changing decision to go completely ‘hands free’. She did so to ensure her children always knew, that their voice in this world matters. “Because,” she continues, “someday our children will find themselves in a difficult situation and they’ll have a choice — either to suffer in silence or speak up. And perhaps that is the moment they will remember your eyes, the nodding of your head, your thoughtful response. And suddenly they will be reminded that their voice holds value.” Read more about the “Hands Free” movement — and how it has the potential to be transformative. { read more }

Be The Change

Experiment with setting down your electronic devices for a period, and really tuning in to that which matters most to you.

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Awakin Weekly: Art And The Practice Of Being Yourself

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InnerNet Weekly: Inspirations from ServiceSpace.org
Art And The Practice Of Being Yourself
by Stanley Kunitz

[Listen to Audio!]

tow2.jpgThere isn’t only one kind of artist in the world, one way of becoming an artist. There is, above all, a need to articulate your own source of being so you will recognize the source and know who you are. How could you be an artist if you didn’t explore your own inner life? There is something in the human being I would call, in the most general terms, a need to transcend the corporeal being and become a person identified by his or her individuating qualities…

As Blake put it, “We must create a system or be enslaved by another man’s.” You have to practice being yourself and not merely exist as a number in a world of billions of numbers…

The creative gift has very complex origins; you’re accumulating and digesting experience, trying to discover its meanings, instead of stuffing it into a closet and moving on to whatever happens to you next. Every experience you have is a lesson in how to live for the next one and if you never learn anything from the experiences of the past, you never mature either as a person or as an artist.

My sense is that you’re born with a more or less empty vault. Perhaps the first experiences are even before that, in the womb, and the vault begins to fill with jewels or painful memories. Each memory of a disastrous experience is there, not only as a wound but as a warning. You have to learn how to recognize the return of the same dilemma you’ve been through before. You have to look at the tag and the price.

Different kinds of memories enter into the making of the self, but among those, there are a few absolutely central memories. They may be traumatic, but they are the crystallization of the creative person’s treasure house…

In a sense, all creativity is a process of giving meaning to what is on a universal scale meaningless. The plant and the poet and the gardener collect these disparate, disorganized raindrops, sun rays, passing birds and make something formal. Creativity gives form to what is in nature ambiguous, suggestive. Language wasn’t there at the beginning. It was created after people had gone through all sorts of experiences and needed to become expressive in order to give meaning to life…

As an artist, you are a representative human being – you have to believe that in order to give your life over to that effort to create something of value. You’re not doing it only to satisfy your own impulses or needs; there is a social imperative. If you solve your problems and speak of them truly, you are of help to others, that’s all. And it becomes a moral obligation.

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Art And The Practice Of Being Yourself
How do you practice “being yourself and not merely exist as a number in a world of billions of numbers”? How do you relate to creativity being a process by which you give meaning to what is meaningless in the universal scale? Can you share a personal story of value-creation out of a moral obligation?
Conrad P Pritscher wrote: Excellent article. Paradoxically I practice being myself by not practicing but rather by being myself with my flaws and warts.. Paradoxically again, being creative is not being creative when on…
david doane wrote: You practice being yourself by being yourself. I don’t think there is another way. I may not be good at it and it may be risky, but it’s worth it. And the alternative is to not be m…
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Why Compassion in Business Makes Sense

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November 25, 2013

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Why Compassion in Business Makes Sense

If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.

– Dalai Lama –

Why Compassion in Business Makes Sense

Managers often think that putting pressure on employees will increase performance. However, recent research shows that when organizations promote an ethic of compassion rather than a culture of stress, they may not only see a happier workplace but also an improved bottom line. Dr. Emma Seppala, the associate director of Stanford’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research, explores how managers can promote a compassionate workplace and why it is of great value to their organizations. { read more }

Be The Change

Think of a situation in which you normally use pressure to reach another person. Experiment with using compassion instead.

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