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Archive for June, 2017

Dr. Toni Frohoff: Life Among Dolphins

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DailyGood News That Inspires

June 30, 2017

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Dr. Toni Frohoff: Life Among Dolphins

There are many great minds on earth and not all are human.

– Anthony Douglas Williams –

Dr. Toni Frohoff: Life Among Dolphins

Dr. Toni Frohoff, Ph.D., who has dedicated her life to studying marine mammal behavior and communication, argues that humans can learn a lot from the wild animals with whom we share the planet, particularly dolphins. Dolphins show a remarkable capacity for experiencing and expressing a range of emotions, and communicate with other members of the species in ways that often defy human capabilities and logic. Dr. Frohoff emphasizes that there are lessons to be gleaned not only from examining the species’ evolutionary history, but from how they conduct their lives. It requires a quieting of the mind, she argues, to learn from other animals, as well as from each other. The way we treat our planet, and the creatures who inhabit it, have far-reaching implications for our generation and many to come. “It underscores the need for awareness of the interconnectedness of all beings.” { read more }

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Are you inspired by Dr. Frohoff’s work? Send her a note of gratitude or appreciation by clicking the link below.

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Take Care of Each Other

This week’s inspiring video: Take Care of Each Other
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Video of the Week

Jun 29, 2017
Take Care of Each Other

Take Care of Each Other

This one-minute video by the Norwegian Directorate of Children, Youth and Family Affairs has gone viral, touching the hearts of over 650,000 viewers in the first three hours of its release. Take a look at just how easy it is to make a difference.
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Start Now, Start Small: Daily Ways to Build Resilience

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DailyGood News That Inspires

June 29, 2017

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Start Now, Start Small: Daily Ways to Build Resilience

There are no obstacles on the path; the obstacles are the path.

– Zen Proverb –

Start Now, Start Small: Daily Ways to Build Resilience

Amy Cuddy of TED Talk fame and Bonnie St. John, who skied in the Olympics, are well known for their accomplishments, but they’ve also had setbacks. The most obvious — St. John’s leg amputation at age 5, and Cuddy’s traumatic brain injury as a teenager. However, they credit their success not to the lessons learned in dealing with major challenges, but rather the small ones. In this interview, we learn that “micro-resilience” and small tweaks can mean the difference between surviving, and thriving. According to St. John, “Micro-resilience is a lot of little things across a spectrum. There’s brain things, metabolism things, purpose-oriented things, anxiety.” Other areas for improvement can be your posture, relationship with fear, or mindset, adds Cuddy. Here, their stories and strategies for overcoming obstacles. { read more }

Be The Change

Today, shift a negative to a positive by reframing your nervousness as excitement.

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OptOutside: REI’s Audacious Experiment in Integrity

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June 28, 2017

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OptOutside: REI's Audacious Experiment in Integrity

An extraordinary business starts with extraordinary people. Extraordinary people start with purpose.

– Jesper Lowgren –

OptOutside: REI’s Audacious Experiment in Integrity

For the last two Black Fridays, REI has done a remarkable thing. It closed the doors of all 143 of its retail stores, its headquarters and its two distribution centres and paid every one of its over 12,000 employees to enjoy the great outdoors with friends and family. Here’s how Jerry Stritzke, REI’s president and CEO, explained the decision: “As a member-owned co-op, our definition of success goes beyond money. We believe that a life lived outdoors is a life well lived and we aspire to be stewards of our great outdoors. We think that Black Friday has gotten out of hand and so we are choosing to invest in helping people get outside with loved ones this holiday season, over spending it in the aisles.” Read on to learn about the challenges of running a purpose-driven company and how REI is leading the way. { read more }

Be The Change

What is your own purpose as an individual? What action can you take this week to live that purpose?

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Ursula Le Guin: Inner Preacher vs Inner Teacher

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June 27, 2017

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Ursula Le Guin: Inner Preacher vs Inner Teacher

I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word. Sometimes I write one, and I look at it, until it begins to shine.

– Emily Dickinson –

Ursula Le Guin: Inner Preacher vs Inner Teacher

“Art transforms us not with what it contains but with what it creates in us”. Author Ursula La Guin challenges the notion of imbuing her work with meaning, and instead suggests that meaning is created by the reader. Instead of trying to convey a certain message or truth, La Guin argues that such messages are revealed to her only as she writes, but do not drive her to write in the first place. A piece of writing, she believes, can shape its audience in profoundly different ways, and she leaves space for it to do so. Distinguishing between her Inner Teacher and Inner Preacher, La Guin strives to follow her Inner Teacher, who “is subtle and humble because she hopes to be understood”, unlike her Inner Preacher who aims to tell others what to do. { read more }

Be The Change

What piece of writing or art has had the deepest impact on you? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Awakin Weekly: Attachments Are Not Set in Stone

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InnerNet Weekly: Inspirations from ServiceSpace.org
Attachments Are Not Set in Stone
by Robina Courtin

[Listen to Audio!]

tow3.jpgAttachment is such a simple word, but it’s multi-faceted. At the most fundamental level it’s that feeling of neediness deep inside us; that belief that somehow I am not enough, I don’t have enough, and no matter what I do or what I get, it’s never enough. Then, of course, because we’re so convinced it’s true, we hanker after someone out there, and when we find the one who triggers our good feelings, we attach ourselves to getting them, convinced they’re the one who will fulfill our needs and make us truly happy and content. We assume they’re our possession, and almost an extension of who we are.

This attachment is the source of all our other unhappy emotions. Because it’s desperate to get what it wants, the minute it doesn’t – the moment he doesn’t ring, or comes home late, or looks at someone else – panic arises and immediately turns to anger and then jealousy or low-self esteem, or whatever our old habits are. In fact, anger is the response when attachment doesn’t get what it wants. All these assumptions are ingrained so deeply within us, and we believe these stories so totally, it seems ridiculous to even question them. But we need to. And the only way we can do that is by knowing our own minds and feelings: in other words, we need to learn how to be our own therapists.

The fact is attachment, anger, jealousy and any other painful emotion are not set in stone; they’re old habits, and we know we can change those. The first step is to be confident that by
knowing our own minds well we can learn to distinguish the various emotions inside us and gradually learn to change them. The first challenge involves truly believing you can accomplish this. And that alone is huge – without it, we’re stuck.

The next stage is to step back from all the endless chatter in our heads. A really simple way to do that – it’s so basic it’s boring! – is for just a few minutes every morning, before we start our day, to sit down and focus on something. The breath is a good start. It’s nothing special; there’s no trick to it; it’s not mystical. It’s a practical psychological technique. With determination you can decide to pay attention to the breath – the sensation at your nostrils as you breathe in and out. The moment your mind wanders, bring your focus back to the breath. The goal is not to make the thoughts go away; but to not get involved in them, and learn to let them come and go.

The long-term result of a technique like this is a super-focused mind, and that’ll take time. But the almost immediate benefit will be that, as we attempt to step back from all the stories in our head, we will begin to be objective about them and slowly start to unravel, deconstruct, and eventually change them. It’s said one of the signs of success is thinking we’re getting worse! But we’re not. We’re starting to hear the stories more clearly, and it’s then that we can begin to change them.

About the Author: Australian-born Tibetan Buddhist nun Robina Courtin travels the world teaching Buddhist psychology and philosophy and helping those in need. Well known for her work for 14 years with people in prisons in the US and Australia, including inmates on death row, Robina’s life and work is the subject of Amiel Courtin Wilson’s award-winning film Chasing Buddha.

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Attachments Are Not Set in Stone
How do you relate to the notion that our attachments are not set in stone? Can you share a personal story of a time you heard your stories clearly and changed them? What helps you be your own therapist?
Kristin Pedemonti wrote: This resonates so much: 1. I am on the morn of embarking on sharing We Become the Stories We Tell both in the US and Canada: the idea is we become the stories we tell ourselves, we create our o…
david doane wrote: “Set in stone” means unchangeable. Nothing is unchangeable or permanent, including our attachments. As a child I learned a lot that I thought was the truth, set in stone, that I was…
Jagdish P Dave wrote: We as human beings have physical, mental and spiritual needs and desires. Most of our needs and desires are met in relationship contexts. How our needs and desires are fulfilled make…
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Some Good News

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Back in 1997, one person started sending this simple “meditation reminder” to a few friends. Soon after, “Wednesdays” started, ServiceSpace blossomed, and the humble experiments of service took a life of its own. If you’d like to start an Awakin gathering in your area, we’d be happy to help you get started.

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Kindness Weekly: Sharing Abundance

KindSpring.org: Small Acts That Change the World

About KindSpring

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.

Inspiring Quote

The beauty of love is that in giving it away, you are left with more than you had before. — David Simon

Member of the Week

thumb.jpgFOODBANKCARLISA ! Dedicated to service for others, opening a “pay what you can afford” restaurant, and more. You make our world a better place. Send FOODBANKCARLISA some KarmaBucks and say hello.

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June 26, 2017

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space EditorEditor’s note: On gratefulness.org, Greta Matos shares that: "We all have a capacity to share what we feel we have an abundance of. When we give without expectation, when we are able to acknowledge what a gift it is to have something to give in the first place, that alone will fill us with an overwhelming sense of gratitude, love, and compassion. The world in which we can give becomes larger; and so do we." Thank you to all the members of our KindSpring community who share their kindness with such abundance! space
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Small Acts of Kindness

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space tsaraci1 wrote: “I offered support to friend and a family member going through a painful transition; wrote thank you card to a former colleague.”
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Featured Kindness Stories

Story1 A 10-year all-volunteer labor of love project reveals the true meaning of kindness.
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Story3 The homeless woman on the other side of the road moved her to turn back.
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In Praise of Melancholia

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June 26, 2017

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In Praise of Melancholia

There is something so enchanting in the smile of melancholy. It is a ray of light in the darkness, a shade between sadness and despair, showing the possibility of consolation.

– Leo Tolstoy –

In Praise of Melancholia

The science of behavioral epigenetic explores how melancholy can be passed down through the generations at the level of our DNA. Long seen as a key element in artistic inspiration, melancholia often helps turn pain and sorrow into healing, ultimately leading to an acceptance of life’s inescapable emotional sufferings and wounds. Indigenous and shamanic cultures such as that of Aboriginal Australia have long believed that whatever suffering we have absorbed from our ancestors’ experiences can be psychically healed in the present by an effort of understanding. { read more }

Be The Change

Bring your thoughts to what you know of any hardships and dark experiences your parents and grandparents may have suffered and embrace whatever pain it evokes in you. Perhaps this can help you and your children, and even relieve those who are long gone in some way.

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How to Kick Your Digital Addiction

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June 25, 2017

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How to Kick Your Digital Addiction

Technology is a useful servant but a dangerous master.

– Christian Lous Lange –

How to Kick Your Digital Addiction

Technology can bring happiness. Anyone who’s found the perfect meditation app or downloaded a grandchild’s photo won’t doubt that.But technology can also bring anxiety, stress, and frustration. And that seems to be a given, too, making us throw our hands in the air. Amy Blankson, author of the new book “The Future of Happiness: 5 Modern Strategies for Balancing Productivity and Well-Being in the Digital Era”, argues we should take back control of our happiness by pausing, becoming more self-aware, and setting intentional goals for our technological interactions. That way, we’ll cultivate more connection and productivity and less stress and loneliness in our digital lives. { read more }

Be The Change

Take some time to consider your technology use. Can you set aside some time to unplug?

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The Women in Spiti Valley who are Saving the Snow Leopard

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DailyGood News That Inspires

June 24, 2017

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The Women in Spiti Valley who are Saving the Snow Leopard

Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.

– Helen Keller –

The Women in Spiti Valley who are Saving the Snow Leopard

In the Spitian language, “shen” means snow leopard. Located in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh, Spiti Valley is one of the few remaining places on earth where snow leopards can be found. Since 2013, women from two of the region’s villages have been working with the Nature Conservation Foundation (NCF) to help protect this endangered species. Known as Project SHEN, the women engage in community development and conservation efforts, and showcase their handicraft skills by creating handmade items such as stationary and jewelry that is sold locally and online. The project has brought about dramatic changes in the lives of the women, as they gain greater independence and self-sufficiency, while making a difference to their community and its wildlife. “They are the custodians of their pastures and mountains,” says Kulbhushan Suryawanshi. { read more }

Be The Change

Learn more about the efforts of the Nature Conservation Foundation. { more }

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