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Archive for September, 2022

Seed Bank, Sunday Call, October Pods

Incubator of compassionate action.

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Seed Bank.
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During last week’s Interfaith Compassion call, a young woman from Brazil shared a powerful story:

In his pursuit of wisdom, a seeker found a hut with a sign: ‘Here, you can find everything your heart desires.’ He enters the hut to find a wise woman, and excitedly shares his long wish list. To which the old woman responds, “My dear, we have a small misunderstanding. What you’re asking for are the fruits, but what you can get here are the seeds.”

oct2_nletter.jpg Last month, more than 1900 of you from 84 countries signed on for a 21-day Interfaith Challenge — to plant seeds in each other’s hearts. And it has been a magical journey, with thousands of inspired stories. This Sunday will be the Pod’s closing call — with Bishop Swing, Sami Awad from Palestine, music in Hebrew, prayers from Japan, and so much more. Since it’s Gandhi’s birthday, we are also delighted to have young girls directly from the Gandhi Ashram, offering opening prayers. We’d love to have you join our celebration of compassion! RSVP here.

Thank you, for cultivating our collective seed bank — one small act at a time.

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UPCOMING PODS
As we wrap up the Interfaith Compassion Challenge, we are gearing up for three weeklong learning journeys — and you’re invited!

  • giphy.gif Oct 9th: Gandhi Today. Everyone knows about Gandhi the leader, but how would his values translate in 2022? He wrote that “law of love” was more precise than gravity and electricity(!), but it required fusing our inner transformation with external service. What does that practically look like? After the same pod last year, Steve in Alaska, called his experience “stupendous”. It’s an uncommon way to consider our individual and collective action. [Learn more/RSVP]
  • rz_ssp_63361c2b74368.jpg Oct 23rd: Labor of Love. A transactional life gets exhausting, but what is the alternative? Can we play a more infinite game? On the coattails of a ‘Laddership’ pod last month, a group of “labor of love” innovators are convening a peer-learning space — to dive into hands-on organizing challenges around ‘priceless pricing’, ‘gift ecology’, ‘deepcasting’, and more out-of-the-box and into-the-heart approaches. [Learn more/RSVP]
  • death.gif Nov 6th: Living and Dying. Sometime last year, Maki-san spoke about her experience with hundreds of dying patients — who learned how to embrace, and even celebrate, impermanence. That led to the formation of this moving pod, with unique prompts and exercises to deepen our relationship to death — and hence, life! Amid loss and love, and grief and grace, how do we tune into deeper grounds of resiliency and engagement with life? [Learn more/RSVP]
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FEW CLIPS FROM THIS MONTH …
zencircle.gif From war-time Poland, an unforgettable story retold by Rabbi Burger: Embracing the Wound of Others

Bala is a young, heartful singer who wowed us with a thousand year old Sankrit prayer: Akka Kelavva

How can science inform our compassion practice? And what it says about its three roadblocks: exhaustion, bias and overwhelm.

A former CIA analyst: “What a Muslim Man Taught Me in Iraq.

Qigong Master Wei Qifeng taking us right to the core: Who Am I?

Dacher Keltner researches awe, but he experienced a bit of it when he discovered who was introducing him — his daughter!

What would you do if an angry student takes the plants in your classroom, and chucks them out the window? Probably not what he did.

Before Sharon Salzberg’s talk, we asked her a few questions, like an act of kindness she’ll never forget and her favorite poem: Five Minutes with Sharon.

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May we all honor the fruit in every seed.
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Widening Circles: An Interview with Joanna Macy

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September 30, 2022

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Widening Circles: An Interview with Joanna Macy

I live my life in widening circles
that reach out across the world.
I may never complete this last one,
but I give myself to it.

– Rainer Maria Rilke, translation Joanna Macy, Anita Barrows –

Widening Circles: An Interview with Joanna Macy

“In this interview, Buddhist eco-philosopher and author Joanna Macy discusses her life and work. From her anti-nuclear activism in the late 60s to her work with deep ecology, Joanna expresses the need to live within an ethic of care for the earth.” { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration, check out this On Being interview with Joanna Macy, “A Wild Love for the World.” { more }

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Treeline

This week’s inspiring video: Treeline
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Video of the Week

Sep 29, 2022
Treeline

Treeline

"Treeline," filmed in three extraordinary forest landscapes across Japan, British Columbia and Nevada, asks us to question: what is a tree? What is our connection to our oldest living companions? When we take the time to really look, to really experience and to really open ourselves to these questions, we begin to realize the great mystery of trees. Giant in scale to other plants, they have a life that is as complex and mysterious as our own. Trees teach us so much with their characters of endurance and stability in a world that is full of change.
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Tsunamika: The Little Doll Changing the World

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September 29, 2022

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Tsunamika: The Little Doll Changing the World

Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.

– Helen Keller –

Tsunamika: The Little Doll Changing the World

“Fashion designer Uma Prajapati was sifting through emails at her office desk one sun-streaked afternoon in 2005, when a particular note caught her eye. It was from a young woman in Mumbai, India, who described her struggles with depression. At her lowest, she’d decided to end her life. The letter writer explained that as she was leaving her office for the last time, her eyes fell on a small scrap of a doll attached to a noticeboard. She paused to read the tag that accompanied it. The doll, it said, had been handmade by women from fishing communities who were rebuilding their lives after having lost everything during the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. In her letter, the woman explained that she was so struck by the sorrow and suffering that those women had endured that it helped put her own worries in perspective. “My life belongs to this little doll,” she wrote.” That little doll was a tsunamika. First created in the wake of the devastating 2004 tsunami, today over 6 million of these tiny, living symbols of healing and hope have been gifted across the world. They continue to make a difference in quietly powerful ways. More in this interview with Uma Prajapati. { read more }

Be The Change

Tsunamika, “in her latest avatar, has taken up the mission of protecting the ocean,’ learn more about her creative efforts and initiatives here. { more }

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The Way Knows the Way

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September 28, 2022

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The Way Knows the Way

Music is the divine way to tell beautiful, poetic things to the heart.

– Pablo Casals –

The Way Knows the Way

“When I was growing up, my mama made up songs for everything. Potty training? Sing about it. Your hearts deepest longing? In song. I learned: like birds, we sing. Simple plain, because were alive. For me Song is a protection mantle, a wise friend, a presence meditation, a comic relief. Song anchors us in our breathing bodies, resonant chambers. Song lives in the crosshairs of Right Here + Right Now.” Lyndsey Scott shares the special story behind a song that came through her, and rippled out far beyond her imaginings. Listen to it here. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration, check out this piece by Sherri Mitchell, “Sacred Instructions: Creation Songs.” { more }

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5 Questions on Your Relationship to Time

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September 27, 2022

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5 Questions on Your Relationship to Time

The real measure of any time management technique is whether or not it helps you neglect the right things.

– Oliver Burkeman –

5 Questions on Your Relationship to Time

Oliver Burkeman’s book, “Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals, is all about how and why to reevaluate your relationship with time — starting with the startling brevity of the average human life span, which gave the book its title. Burkeman doesn’t pull any punches from there. To help guide us weary time travelers, Burkeman’s book poses five questions to help you reconsider your relationship with time.” More in this piece from NPR. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration, check out this On Being interview with Burkeman. { more }

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Why I Stopped Fighting

Weekly excerpt to help us remember the sacred.

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Weekly Reading Sep 26, 2022

Why I Stopped Fighting

–Indigo Ocean

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2584.jpgWhen I was a teenage girl, I had a fight with an older boy who had at least fifty pounds on me. It was a pre-announced fight, so many other students had gathered around to watch. I recall having the upper hand for much of the fight, hitting him dozens of times for every one blow he landed on me. I knocked him to the ground over and over again, using his own weight against him.

At one point, I noticed an elderly woman watching from a window. I saw her looking at me with fear in her eyes. But why me? I was the good guy in this fight! The discrepancy shook me. I had never seen myself as someone to be feared. And there a gap was created in who I knew myself to be.

Suddenly, I looked at the boy I was fighting and saw Jesus the Christ looking back at me. I looked around and the Christ Consciousness appeared in everyone standing there. I also understood that he had no idea he was the Christ.

No, he was very convinced that he was a boy who meant me harm. But I knew the truth, so I couldn’t hit him again.

I could still block though. Once I stopped fighting, he managed to knock me to the ground for the first time, climbed upon my chest, and started punching my shoulders and arms as I protected my head. Through it all I was not the least afraid or angry. All my anger had dissipated and I knew that I would be fine. Eventually, I heard police sirens, which prompted him to get off me and run.

That was but one in a number of satori experiences I’ve had in my lifetime. Thankfully, the rest involved no violence! Each time, I did not need to seek the Truth; I simply knew what was true to be true and what was false to be false. There was no manipulation. Awareness emerged from Grace. […]

Viewed with an understanding that all arises within the Self, that all is Awareness, we do not stop caring. We do not stop helping. We simply do it with a natural equilibrium, like water flowing from areas of higher pressure to areas of lower pressure. No one needs to tell water where it ought to go; its nature is to simply flow.

Through immersing our attention in love of Awareness, this same type of spaciousness can be cultivated in daily life. Worship Awareness. Give yourself completely over to love in as many moments as you can. Live on your knees, kissing the ground of true nature.

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How do you relate to the notion of being in a fearful situation without having a trace of fear or the intention to harm? Can you share a personal story of a time you saw a difficult situation transform due to an awareness of a deeper reality? What helps you see give yourself completely over to love in as many moments as you can?

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Ama Torrance: Without a Recipe

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September 26, 2022

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Ama Torrance: Without a Recipe

Art is not the application of a canon of beauty but what the instinct and the brain can conceive beyond any canon.

– Pablo Picasso –

Ama Torrance: Without a Recipe

“I’m not a traditionalist. I don’t really stick with the rules of anything. I can’t follow a recipe in a recipe book. I have to do it my way. So I get the basic tenets of how things work, you know. If you want to make banana bread you look at a bunch of recipes and figure out how everything works together and then you make it however you want to make it.” Richard Whittaker’s curiosity was piqued when he chanced upon an assortment of outsized animal sculptures on the grounds of an elegant home. Not long after, he sat down for an in-depth interview with the sculptor, Ama Torrance. { read more }

Be The Change

Take a moment to reflect on the balance between structured learning, and intuitive flow in your own life. Where do you find yourself most rigorously “following the recipe,” and where do you give yourself full permission to experiment?

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Peace Pilgrim: A Life of Service

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September 25, 2022

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Peace Pilgrim: A Life of Service

I felt a complete willingness, without any reservations, to give my life — to dedicate my
life — to service.

– Peace Pilgrim –

Peace Pilgrim: A Life of Service

“On January 1, 1953, at age 44, Mildred Lisette Norman changed her name to Peace Pilgrim, put
on a pair of canvas sneakers, donned dark blue slacks, blouse, and a tunic–on which she had
sown her new name–and set out to walk the length of the country leaving from Pasadena, CA…She would walk non-stop for the next 28 years, weaving back and forth across the country, and
making several trips into neighboring countries. From the start, her life on the roadwalking,
talking, eating, sleepingwas undertaken as a reverent, loving prayer, integrating, what she
believed were all the important things of life into a penniless, simple, committed existence of
love and service.” More about the remarkable life of Peace Pilgrim here. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration, you can check out the full text of “Peace Pilgrim: Her Life and Work in Her Own Words,” here. { more }

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The Greatest Nature Essay Ever

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September 24, 2022

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The Greatest Nature Essay Ever

Maybe we will be better human beings when we begin to see all the other things a place is besides all the things we think it is or wanted it to be.

– Brian Doyle –

The Greatest Nature Essay Ever

“The Greatest Nature Essay ever would begin with an image so startling and lovely and wondrous that you would stop riffling through the rest of the mail, take your jacket off, sit down at the table, adjust your spectacles, tell the dog to lie down, tell the kids to make their own sandwiches for heavenssake, thats why god gave you hands, and read straight through the piece, marveling that you had indeed seen or smelled or heard exactly that, but never quite articulated it that way, or seen or heard it articulated that way, and you think, man, this is why I read nature essays, to be startled and moved like that, wow.” What follows is a brief and beautiful piece by the late writer Brian Doyle. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration, check out this post by Doyle, “What is the Single Greatest Virtue of Our Species?” { more }

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DailyGood is a volunteer-run initiative that delivers “good news” to 161,748 subscribers. There are many ways to help. To unsubscribe, click here.

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