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Archive for March, 2017

He Showed Us The Way: A Speech by Cesar Chavez on MLK

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DailyGood News That Inspires

March 31, 2017

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He Showed Us The Way: A Speech by Cesar Chavez on MLK

Nonviolence is more powerful than violence.

– Cesar Chavez –

He Showed Us The Way: A Speech by Cesar Chavez on MLK

“The burdens of generations of poverty and powerlessness lie heavy in the fields of America,”said Cesar Chavez in April 1978, rallying farm workers and praising Martin Luther King’s use of non-violence “as a truly powerful weapon to achieve equality and liberation.” Chavez’ view of non-violence was practical. Like King he lived what he believed, and we can apply to him his own words in praise of King: “few men or women ever have the opportunity to know the true satisfaction that comes with giving one’s life totally in the nonviolent struggle for justice. { read more }

Be The Change

Chavez said that “people become violent when the deep concern they have for people is frustrated and when they are faced with seemingly insurmountable odds.” The next time you become angry, or someone becomes violent with you, can you accept and forgive as you seek to find the justice at the core of the problem?

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The Life and Legacy of Cesar Chavez

This week’s inspiring video: The Life and Legacy of Cesar Chavez
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Video of the Week

Mar 30, 2017
The Life and Legacy of Cesar Chavez

The Life and Legacy of Cesar Chavez

Civil rights activist and labor leader Cesar Estrada Chavez was responsible for many of the labor codes – the protections, benefits, and the right to organize – that workers benefit from today in the United States. He championed the use of nonviolent tactics in labor advocacy and in 1968, his nascent union, the United Farm Workers of America, led one of the most successful boycotts in U.S. history – the boycott of all California table grapes. However, he worked for more than higher wages, better hours and working conditions for laborers; he worked to improve the dilemmas faced by farm families outside the workplace. Today, the Cesar Chavez Foundation continues his work for better housing, healthcare and education for Latino families. This March 31, let us pay tribute to the life and legacy of Cesar Chavez, born on this day in 1927.
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Filtering a Plastic Ocean

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DailyGood News That Inspires

March 30, 2017

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Filtering a Plastic Ocean

The sea, the great unifier, is man’s only hope. Now, as never before, the old phrase has a literal meaning: we are all in the same boat.

– Jacques Yves Cousteau –

Filtering a Plastic Ocean

After 50 years of dumping plastics in the ocean, our seas are returning deadly microplastic particles to our beaches all over the world. This short film, Filtering A Plastic Ocean, explores the impact these tiny plastics, laced with toxic chemicals, have on marine wildlife and human health, and profiles ocean activist Marc Ward whose simple invention is making beaches safer for people around the world. { read more }

Be The Change

Find a new way to dispose of plastics, as Marc Ward did. Carry a cloth bag for your shopping and return plastic bags to supermarkets.

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Luc and the Lovingtons: Music as a Force of Love

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March 29, 2017

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Luc and the Lovingtons: Music as a Force of Love

Music is the language of the spirit. It opens the secret of life bringing peace, abolishing strife.

– Kahlil Gibran –

Luc and the Lovingtons: Music as a Force of Love

At 6-years-old Luc Reynaud announced to his teacher that he was going to paint the moon. “And what about the Earth, Luc? What about the universe?” Luc felt an electric surge of energy through his body, as his teacher picked up a huge bolt of construction paper and unfurled it across the classroom floor. For the next few weeks, Luc — along with his friends — painted the universe. It was a heady first taste of what it felt like to dream a big dream, hold a shared vision, and color it in with community. Years later in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina he showed up at an emergency shelter to volunteer. He didn’t realize then that the guitar he had brought with him would be an essential part of the service he rendered — and that it would take him on journey that included founding a band, being contacted by Emmy-award-winner Jason Mraz, and singing to communities of people facing adversity all over the world in refugee camps, prisons, hospitals, homeless shelters and more. A journey in which he would once again “paint the universe” — only this time with music, and the power of love. { read more }

Be The Change

Learn more about Luc’s adventures in music and service on this Saturday’s Awakin Call. RSVP here. { more }

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Why Play? This Is Serious

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DailyGood News That Inspires

March 28, 2017

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Why Play? This Is Serious

Play is the answer to how anything new comes about.

– Jean Piaget –

Why Play? This Is Serious

While play is fun, it also has serious benefits — for everyone. “Play and games (with and without rules) enable us to learn about ourselves, who we want to be, and how we see ourselves in the world. Play has huge benefits for people of all ages, including how to solve problems, gain knowledge, learn to be in a group, and develop creativity and imagination.” In this article, Sarah Huxley explores the role of play in history and anthropology for individuals and society and shares recent research on the subject. She also talks about her new initiative Toybox Mums Collective, where “mums can develop their own skills and contribute to toy designs that will improve their children’s capacities.” Mothers have the power to change the world by influencing their children and the way they play. Find out how Huxley hopes to help. { read more }

Be The Change

Learn more about the importance of play by watching a TED talk from this “playlist” 🙂 { more }

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Awakin Weekly: We Are Swimming in Miracles

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We Are Swimming in Miracles
by Peter Kalmus

[Listen to Audio!]

tow5.jpgChicago. I remember in high school, I went for a walk. I was going to a friend’s house and I was walking past all these houses; it was the evening, sort of dark. In every house, there were blue flickering lights going in synchrony because everyone was watching the same TV show. It was a quiet night and I was alone, just walking with the sound of the freeway and the blue flickering lights. And what had seemed normal to me my whole life suddenly seemed strange. Even so, I didn’t think of some other way of living. […]

I think there’s this misconception in Western culture that wanting things is a solution. It’s actually a form of suffering. I wouldn’t be surprised if most people thought that wanting things, and then having those cravings satisfied, is happiness. So they’re constantly chasing after these sensual things, and maybe for some amount of time after a craving is gratified, a person feels relief from this deeper suffering. But then it comes back again. It’s actually stronger because the cycle of wanting and gratification is a habit, and now the habit has gotten a little more ingrained.

That’s why even when people get all this money it’s not enough; they might get a collection of sports cars. Then they get one giant mansion, and that’s not enough. So they get a summer home. Then they get a summer home in France. It just keeps going. Then they start buying politicians and buying ideologies and changing the whole fabric of Western culture. But that’s still not enough. So space tourism is coming along. The craving never ends. It’s infinite.

Even the people who do make this connection, I think a lot of them don’t understand that it takes a lot of work to start to change this. It’s like practicing the piano. They think they’ll suddenly be enlightened. Right? Maybe people don’t think this way, but certainly for a lot of my life, before I actually started meditating, I had this sense that enlightenment was this kind of mystical thing that was out of my power to obtain, but that through some kind of grace, some kind of mystical process that I don’t understand, maybe suddenly it could happen. In fact, what I found out about meditation and about dealing with this habit is that it takes a lot of practice, like becoming a concert pianist. You practice it every day, and there’s nothing mystical about it. But I don’t see these 7.2 billion people all starting to do that. But I think we should absolutely be doing that because that’s the path that will make us come out of our suffering and make us be happier. Maybe it can happen fast. Maybe it will take hundreds of years, or maybe thousands of years. I don’t think anyone can predict. But maybe, ultimately, it will catch on. […]

So whenever you think that you don’t have enough, like there’s something that you think you need right now, then your mind is in the future. You feel like there’s something missing from this moment, and that’s a kind of suffering. But if you can make this little shift, you can start to see that everything around us—like this cup of tea, or this air that we breathe, or just the fact that we can have this conversation, or see a plant growing or the taste of the delicious beans and chard and avocado I just ate—you see that we’re swimming in miracles. All of the bad stuff that happens comes from not recognizing this and by wanting more stuff for one’s self and by being afraid of other people, feeling separate and seeing them in opposition. […]

This wanting is kind of what gets in the way of seeing all the miracles we’re swimming in. When we see these ordinary miracles, life becomes – so wonderful.

About the Author:Peter Kalmus. Excerpt from an interview in works & conversations. [Illustration offered as an anonymous gift :-)]

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We Are Swimming in Miracles
How do you relate to the notion that we are actually swimming in miracles? Can you share a personal story of a time you were able to recognize this? What helps you recognize the miracles in everyday life?
Jagdish P Dave wrote: We have a desiring, longing and chasing mind. There is nothing enough. There is no full satisfaction. We keep on moving in this cycle until we see the futility of longing more and more, newer and big…
david doane wrote: It’s said the last one to notice water is a fish. Like the fish in water, we’re swimming in miracles and may take them for granted. Everything is a miracle. Creation is a mira…
Amy wrote: Went to SS Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Mankato yesterday (as we were visiting my son’s girlfriend’s college town)! … We surely are swimming in miracles! From the architecture, to the li…
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Are Two Lives Saved Twice as Good as One?

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March 27, 2017

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Are Two Lives Saved Twice as Good as One?

Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted

– William Bruce Cameron –

Are Two Lives Saved Twice as Good as One?

“Are two lives saved twice as good as one life saved?” A decision-analysis expert uses this provocative question as a springboard into an exploration of what we value, how we value it, the costly mistakes we make along the way — and what we can do about it. He opens with this compelling story from 1922 Munich (and concludes with an equally gripping one about the US Marines in Afganistan): “The teacher walked into the class and nodded. The class stood up and took the oath they recited daily before beginning lessons, “I was born to die for Germany.” As they took their seats, the teacher noticed one boy still standing. They locked eyes, and the boy found his voice, “I think I was born to live for Germany,” he said. That boy was Robert S. Hartman who made it his life goal to study values and come up with a scientific way to prevent value confusion of the kind that he saw during the Nazi era.” { read more }

Be The Change

When you engage with numbers, whether around life or work, what comes up for you when you think about the “what” that is being valued, and the “how” of the valuation? What shifts in your experience of value after applying the rules (as detailed in the article) to identify valuation mistakes?

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Kindness Weekly: It All Starts With Listening

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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My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness. –Dalai Lama

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March 26, 2017

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space EditorEditor’s note: Polarization occurs when neither side feels like they are being truly "heard". Bridging major divides starts with deep listening. Sometimes, it takes an unexpected situation, like a long car trip, to bring people on opposing sides together to appreciate and listen to one another (as revealed in this recent story). Perhaps, we should all try reaching out to the "other" and really listen to their side. -Ameeta space
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space Alisamom wrote: “I had some magazines I no longer needed and I left them in the waiting room of the therapy center.”
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Featured Kindness Stories

Story1 Her friends got together to show that they care during a tough time.
Story2 Listening to the homeless man felt like therapy for him.
Story3 She turned her grief into service that could help others.
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Idea of the Week

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Greeting the Light: A Conversation with James Turrell

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March 26, 2017

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Greeting the Light: A Conversation with James Turrell

The artist vocation is to send light into the human heart.

– Robert Schumann –

Greeting the Light: A Conversation with James Turrell

“I was a Quaker and then, for a while, I wasn’t. And now I am again,” Thus begins a deep conversation with one of the worlds most important artists. Learning to fly when he was sixteen, later he flew monks out of Tibet. “I feel like I’ve had several lifetimes in this life,” he says. But light is this artist’s subject.”My grandmother told me that as you sat in Quaker silence you were to go inside to greet the light. That expression stuck with me,” he says. Since the 1970s his work continues on Roden Crater, an unprecedented large-scale artwork in Arizona, designed as a controlled environment for the experiencing and contemplation of light. { read more }

Be The Change

Just stop for a few minutes to look at how the light is in play around you. Give yourself permission to slow down enough to begin to see all the little examples of lights silent and changing presence.

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The Vet Who Is Saving India’s Orphaned Animals

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DailyGood News That Inspires

March 25, 2017

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The Vet Who Is Saving India's Orphaned Animals

Life is as dear to a mute creature, as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures.

– Dalai Lama –

The Vet Who Is Saving India’s Orphaned Animals

For over 16 years now, Dr. Bhaskar Choudhary and his team at the Wildlife Rescue Center in Assam, India, have been working tirelessly to rehabilitate over a thousand orphan and injured wild animals, including elephant and rhino calves, wild buffaloes, tigers, leopards, deer, and birds, and to return to the forest and survive independently. Choudhary also provides information on displaced animals to locals to assist with animal care during natural disasters like floods in the fragile ecosystem of North Eastern India. Despite the countless sleepless nights spent patiently caring for injured or orphaned animals, Choudhary only describes a feeling of gratitude to the animals which have allowed him “to experience life in such miraculous and invaluable ways.” { read more }

Be The Change

What can you do today to help an animal, plant or fellow human being?

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