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Archive for November 1, 2022

George Saunders on Writing

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November 1, 2022

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George Saunders on Writing

Do those things that incline you toward the big questions, and avoid the things that would reduce you and make you trivial.

– George Saunders –

George Saunders on Writing

“As a writer, the work is always particularization to move from mere concept (tree, forest) into specific descriptions that sort of take that thing apart and then cause a new and more intense perception of it to occur within a particular mindstate (usually that of a character). So, what really happens is that you start to dissolve the traditional distinction between the natural and man-made worlds its all natural, in the sense that it all has come to be. And this process of particularization is somehow related to increased tenderness for. Which, in turn, I guess, is the ultimate environmentalism like, a fondness for everything that is, and an enhanced recognition that its actually all one thing, all interconnected, and if we like any of it, wed better feel tenderness for all of it.” Writer George Saunders shares more in this interview. { read more }

Be The Change

For more inspiration check out Saunders’ piece, “What I Regret Most Are Failures of Kindness.” { more }

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Hopium

Weekly excerpt to help us remember the sacred.

Awakin.org
Weekly Reading Oct 31, 2022

Hopium

–Margaret Wheatley

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2592.jpgThe problem with hope is that it’s bipolar. Every time we rely on hope, we always bring in fear. Wisdom teaches that hope and fear are two sides of the same dynamic. You already know this from your own experience. Think of when you put great hope and effort in a project, cause, or person. You worked very hard for its success, but then it failed from causes beyond your control. How did you feel then?

Too many of us good people dedicated to creating change have become addicted to hope. We feel despair for the destruction of planet, peoples, species, and the future. Yet we still need to make a difference, so we grasp for hope to motivate and energize us.

As Holocaust survivor, Hannah Arendt, said, "Hope is a dangerous barrier to acting courageously in dark times. In hope, the soul overleaps reality, as in fear it shrinks back from it.”

It’s time to be aware of this cycle and liberate ourselves from the drug of Hopium. Hopium never gives us the energy and motivation we need to contribute and persevere. As we free ourselves from the cycle of hope and fear, we don’t become useless, hopeless people. Instead, we become people who can see clearly how to contribute in meaningful ways. We discover work that makes a different difference. We contribute meaningfully within our sphere of influence to a person, a community, a local cause.

Those who deeply care about a friend or family member who’s addicted will sometimes create an intervention for the person to see their addiction and discover a better way. It’s my heartfelt aspiration that we liberate ourselves from Hopium so that we can discover meaningful work to serve the human spirit and the spirit of life.

Hope blinds us to our path of contribution. With insight and compassion, we discover abundant ways to contribute to this time of great suffering for peoples and planet.

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How do you relate to the notion that hope and fear are two sides of the same dynamic? Can you share a personal story of a time you were able to move beyond hope and fear and see clearly how you could contribute in meaningful ways? What helps you stay rooted in your contribution?

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