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Archive for May, 2022

Surrendering and Opening to Hope in Times of Crisis

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May 24, 2022

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Surrendering and Opening to Hope in Times of Crisis

Surrendering reminds me that my way is always inferior to the way of life.

– Anna-Zoe Herr –

Surrendering and Opening to Hope in Times of Crisis

When Anna-Zoe Herr’s father passed four years ago, she grappled with almost unbearable pain and grief and was finding it difficult to find hope. One night, she had a dream in which her father appeared, sitting opposite her. “I came back because you have a question for me,” he said. Zoe was taken aback and then said quickly, “Yes, I do. How do I overcome your death?” “You don’t overcome my death,” her father replied. “You just love.” Taking this injunction to heart, Zoe’s path deepened towards love, towards hope and imagination even amidst despair. You can read more about Zoe’s journey and her creative endeavors here. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration, join this Saturday’s Awakin Call with Anna-Zoe Herr! More details and RSVP info here. { more }

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On the Creative and Spiritual Rewards of Gardening

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DailyGood News That Inspires

May 23, 2022

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On the Creative and Spiritual Rewards of Gardening

A garden is a way that the land says, “I love you.”…Gardens are simultaneously a material and a spiritual undertaking.

– Robin Wall Kimmerer –

On the Creative and Spiritual Rewards of Gardening

“Something happens when you are in a garden, when you garden something beyond the tactile reminder that, in the history of life on Earth, without flowers, there would be no us. Kneeling between the scale of seeds and the scale of stars, touching evolutionary time and the cycle of seasons at once, you find yourself rooted more deeply into your own existence transient and transcendent, fragile and ferociously resilient and are suddenly humbled into your humanity. (Lest we forget, humility comes from humilis Latin for low, of the earth.) You look at a flower and cannot help but glimpse the meaning of life.” In this engaging post Maria Popova shines a light on the garden-related musings of artists and writers down the ages. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration, check out Popova’s post on, “Gardening and the Secret of Happiness.” { more }

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Meet the Four Characters of Your Brain

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DailyGood News That Inspires

May 22, 2022

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Meet the Four Characters of Your Brain

I may not be in total control of what happens in my life, but I certainly am in charge of how I choose to perceive my experience.

– Jill Bolte Taylor –

Meet the Four Characters of Your Brain

“I am a brain enthusiast. (I’m sure you have picked up on that by now.) But, beyond the beauty of this amazing organ we all have inside our heads, it is our remarkable brain cells that manifest our choices and abilities. When we understand which cells manifest which of our abilities, the more power we have to choose who and how we want to be in any moment. I consider my new book, Whole Brain Living, to be a roadmap to the four different “Characters” inside your brain. The better you know your Four Characters, the easier your life will become.” Neuroscientist Jill Bolte Taylor shares more in this post. { read more }

Be The Change

Taylor’s TED talk “My Stroke of Insight,” powerfully describes her experience of witnessing herself in the process of having a massive stroke. Her talk has over 28 million views. You can watch it here. { more }

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Prophets Without Robes or Staffs

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DailyGood News That Inspires

May 21, 2022

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Prophets Without Robes or Staffs

To realize that prophecy in the people is like fruit in the tree is to know the unity of life.

– Kahlil Gibran –

Prophets Without Robes or Staffs

“Today and always, the prophet confronts a dark object, a menacing, enigmatic, obdurate reality affecting the entire community. How to grasp that dark object? Where are the handholds? What approach would permit one to slow the dark object, to interrogate it, to bring it to light, to dispel and transform its menace?” { read more }

Be The Change

Take a moment to consider who (if anyone) you consider to be the prophets of our time.

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The Sounds of Silence

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DailyGood News That Inspires

May 20, 2022

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The Sounds of Silence

Does not everything depend on our interpretation of the silence around us?

– Lawrence Durrell –

The Sounds of Silence

“When I was a sixteen-year-old naturalist in training, we were instructed to sit in the forest and wait for the return of something called the baseline symphony. The baseline symphony was the music of a landscape at easethe confluence of insect, bird, and animal song, underscored by wind and water. The dynamics of that symphony shifted as day progressed into night. There were brief caesuras, but it did not fall silent for long except in the case of a disturbance. Silence signaled the onset of weather events, a stalking predator, the encroachment of loggers, or the footfalls of a teenager with punk rock looping loudly in her brain. As I picked down the forest path, an unnatural quiet fell, broken only by the occasional bird alarm.” Lisa Wells explores the many dimensions of silence in this powerful, and personal piece. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration, check out “Sanctuaries of Silence,” an immersive experience from Emergence Magazine. { more }

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Living in the Time of Dying – Film

KarmaTube: Do-Something Videos

Watching River Otters

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DailyGood News That Inspires

May 19, 2022

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Watching River Otters

We have the opportunity to lay the foundations for a way of life more aligned with the deeper truths of the Earth and our own sacred nature.

– Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee –

Watching River Otters

“Walking in the wetlands I encounter a family of river otters playing in the water, then sliding their sleek bodies onto the land. They tumble over each other in the sand, as a blue heron watches nearby. In their primal world there is neither truth nor falsehood, just life present, unfractured. Once, long ago, we walked in this landscape, were part of this ecology of place. With songs and prayers, dances and dreams we were also alive in lifes wholeness. But today our human world is not like this, our consciousness long disconnected, held only by those Indigenous people and others who live close to the Earth.” Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee shares more. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration check out Teddy Macker’s poem, “The Otters and the Seaweed.” { more }

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This Fantastic Argument of Being Alive

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May 18, 2022

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This Fantastic Argument of Being Alive

May we find our foundation in the work of Love; demanding, tiring, true and human and holy.

– Padraig O Tuama –

This Fantastic Argument of Being Alive

“Padraig O Tuama is a friend, teacher, and colleague to the work of On Being. But before that was true, Krista took a revelatory trip to meet him at his home in Northern Ireland, a place that has known sectarianism and violent fracture and has evolved, not to perfection, yet to new life and once unimaginable repair and relationship. Our whole world screams of fracture, more now than when Krista sat with Padraig in 2016. This conversation is a gentle, welcoming landing for pondering and befriending hard realities we are given.” { read more }

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Learn more about O Tuama’s writing and work here. { more }

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Things to Look Forward To

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May 17, 2022

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Things to Look Forward To

How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives,

– Annie Dillard –

Things to Look Forward To

In 2020 when the pandemic tore across our globe, “She [children’s bookmaker, Sophie Blackall] coped the way all artists cope, complained the way all makers complain: by making something of beauty and substance, something that begins as a quickening of self-salvation in ones own heart and ripples out to touch, to salve, maybe even to save others — which might be both the broadest and the most precise definition of art. One morning under the hot shower, Sophie began making a mental list of things to look forward to — a lovely gesture of taking tomorrows outstretched hand in that handshake of trust and resolve we call optimism.” Maria Popova shares more. { read more }

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If you’re inspired to, make a spontaneous list in this moment, of five things you’re looking forward to.

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Agent Of Illumination

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Agent Of Illumination
by Elizabeth Gilbert

[Listen to Audio!]

2557.jpgSome years ago, I was stuck on a crosstown bus in New York City during rush hour. Traffic was barely moving. The bus was filled with cold, tired people who were deeply irritated with one another, with the world itself. Two men barked at each other about a shove that might or might not have been intentional. A pregnant woman got on, and nobody offered her a seat. Rage was in the air; no mercy would be found here.

But as the bus approached Seventh Avenue, the driver got on the intercom. ‘Folks,’ he said, ‘I know you have had a rough day and you are frustrated. I can’t do anything about the weather or traffic, but here is what I can do. As each one of you gets off the bus, I will reach out my hand to you. As you walk by, drop your troubles into the palm of my hand, okay? Don’t take your problems home to your families tonight, just leave them with me. My route goes right by the Hudson River, and when I drive there later, I will open the window and throw your troubles in the water.’

It was as if a spell had lifted. Everyone burst out laughing. Faces gleamed with surprised delight. People who had been pretending for the past hour not to notice each other’s existence were suddenly grinning at each other like, is this guy serious?

At the next stop, just as promised, the driver reached out his hand, palm up, and waited. One by one, all the exiting commuters placed their hand just above his and mimed the gesture of dropping something into his palm. Some people laughed as they did this, some teared up but everyone did it. The driver repeated the same lovely ritual at the next stop, too. And the next. All the way to the river.

We live in a hard world, my friends. Sometimes it is extra difficult to be a human being. Sometimes you have a bad day. Sometimes you have a bad day that lasts for several years. You struggle and fail. You lose jobs, money, friends, faith, and love. You witness horrible events unfolding in the news, and you become fearful and withdrawn. There are times when everything seems cloaked in darkness. You long for the light but don’t know where to find it.

But what if you are the light? What if you are the very agent of illumination that a dark situation begs for?. That’s what this bus driver taught me, that anyone can be the light, at any moment. This guy wasn’t some big power player. He wasn’t a spiritual leader. He wasn’t some media-savvy influencer. He was a bus driver, one of society’s most invisible workers. But he possessed real power, and he used it beautifully for our benefit.

When life feels especially grim, or when I feel particularly powerless in the face of the world’s troubles, I think of this man and ask myself, What can I do, right now, to be the light? Of course, I can’t personally end all wars, or solve global warming, or transform vexing people into entirely different creatures. I definitely can’t control traffic. But I do have some influence on everyone I brush up against, even if we never speak or learn each other’s name.

No matter who you are, or where you are, or how mundane or tough your situation may seem, I believe you can illuminate your world. In fact, I believe this is the only way the world will ever be illuminated, one bright act of grace at a time, all the way to the river.

About the Author: Elizabeth Gilbert is an American author best known for her memoir Eat, Pray, Love.

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Agent Of Illumination
What does being an agent of illumination mean to you? Can you share a personal story of a time you were an agent of illumination? What helps you be the light in a difficult situation?
Ricky wrote: Teaching high school during this past three years has been extraordinarily trying, and my hubby keeps reminding me to ‘find the blossoms’. When the well of creativity seems dried up, and the stress o…
+Jagdish+P+Dave wrote: We all go through dark times. And we all want to see the light and be free from the pain of suffering. Who creates darkness within? Who can dispell this darkness? Who creates this prison and who can r…
David Doane wrote: Being an agent of illumination means to me to let my inner light shine. My inner light is the Light as it shines through me as what I am experiencing, as my feeling or insight or idea. It’s my truth…
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