Dear Fellow Lifequester,
There are a few things I wanted to tell you–and, of course, I hope you will read all I have to say–but just in case you are in a rush you can click to what most interests you:
- A personal update about my own life quest
- Nearly free electronic copies of my new book How To Be Alive
- Details of tomorrow night’s live, internet event with me (you can ask questions!)
- Thoughts about why your therapy or spiritual practice may not be working
- Ways to make your life more meaningful without tearing it apart
- A simple practice for making your personal and business relationships more peaceful
I thought I would just fill you in a little on how things are going with me. (And by the way, I do that because I think some of you actually want to hear about my personal life and my own lifequest, though I am still figuring out exactly how to do this email newsletter thing. I hope you will bear with me.)
Community Living: You may remember from previous newsletters that I am looking for funding for a building in which a group of people can live together in a way that also serves the community around them. It will be residential on the top floors and the basement floor will be a meditation, yoga and educational space. The name I have been toying with is The Center for Community and Spiritual Activism.
There is a lot more to this idea, but for now, in order to keep my personal costs down and because I prefer community living, Bella and I have taken a new roommate. She is a Russian artist and seems great.
I mention this because, although we are all encouraged in this society to get our own private home as quickly as possible, living together minfully and consciously can actually work so much better. There are the economies of scale, which mean you may get spend less and therefore work less.
Also, for me, as a co-parent with an only child, it is amazing to have another adult around. Bella loves our having a roommate because she doesn’t always depend on me for conversation. This morning, for example, Bella kept asking: “When will she get up, Dad? When will she get up?”
I’d be interested to hear any thoughts you have about communal living, my Center for Community and Spiritual Activism project, or anything else. Click here to leave a comment.
Purging: Because the new roommate was coming, we needed to create space in closets and cupboards so we went through a big purging process. I gave clothes to friends with young kids, put books out on the sidewalk for neighbors, and generally created lightness in our space.
Where did all the extra stuff come from? Lots of gifts, for one thing. People give me clothes I don’t really want. Also, having a kid is like having a junk magnet. Folks want to give something to Bella so they give her plastic crap that she never uses but doesn’t want to throw away.
So obviously, the best thing is to keep extra stuff at bay, but purging the stuff that passed our barriers sure felt good. If you have thoughts on purging, it would be great to hear about that, too. Leave a comment here.
My Work: You may know that more and more people have been coming to me to ask for help in bringing their own lives in line with their values. I have been calling this work “transformational coaching.” I love writing, of course, but bringing wisdom of the many years of searching and training directly into other people’s lives has been great.
I am also working on building more classes like the recent How To Be Alive Master Class and trying to figure out ways for all of us to relate in community. I am thinking of launching a How To Be Alive Facebook group for exchanging thoughts and ideas. I am also thinking of a “No Screens Challenge,” where we get to support each other in reclaiming our time from our screens.
Meanwhile, I continue to blog and Facebook and try to inspire people to live lives that are better for them and the world. I am considering both a weekly podcast and a weekday, three to five minute “thought for the day” podcast.
I’d love to hear what you think about all this. Please leave a comment here.
Also, I work on a mixed donation and fee-for-service model. That let’s me do things like blog and give talks at public schools and spread the word to people who can’t pay. If you would like to help support the work, go here.
To celebrate Earth Day, my publisher is offering my book How To Be Alive: A Guide To The Kind of Happiness That Helps The World for only $1.99 on electronic platforms. Click on this link to buy it for Kindle, Nook, etc. This offer ends on May 2.
This Wednesday, April 20th 5-6:30PM PST, I’ll be joining host Terry Patten on Beyond Awakening: the Future of Spiritual Practice for a dialogue entitled, “Helping the World by Wanting What Actually Makes You Happy.”
We’ll be discussing my new book, How to Be Alive: A Guide to the Kind of Happiness that Helps the World and the practical spirituality that can arise from questioning the story that we can’t make a difference. We’ll also explore how taking the small, practical steps that express our compassion for others and the planet can simultaneously bring unexpected happiness into our own lives.
Terry’s core inquiry on Beyond Awakening is about how higher consciousness can enable human beings to rise to meet the unique challenges of our world in crisis, so our discussion will be held in that context. You’ll be able to participate with questions toward the end of the dialogue.
If you sign up for it here, you can listen to the interview on Wednesday, April 20th 5-6:30PM PST or you can download it later. You’ll also gain access to over 100 others, all rich and fascinating dialogues, in which Terry — along with thought leaders such as Stephen Jenkinson, Peter Russell, Dan Brown, Marianne Williamson, Ken Wilber, Lynne Twist, Daniel Siegel, Ram Dass, Joanna Macy and others — earnestly explores the pivotal questions of our time. It’s an amazingly rich resource.
Recent Blog Posts
Why Your Therapy Or Spiritual Practice Might Not Be Working (And What You Can Do): When Freud, Jung, Rogers, Perls and others developed analysis and therapy in the last century, so many of them–and their patients–lived in stable, safe, happy worlds. If they were personally unhappy, there was something wrong with them and they needed to change themselves. But what if our unhappiness comes not from something we need to fix in ourselves but from something that needs to be changed in the world? Here are some hints. For more, click here.
How I Make My Life Helpful And Happy NOW (Instead of In The Future): Back before I did the No Impact Man lifestyle experiment–in which I completely deconstructed my life and then put it back together, small choice by small choice–I worried mostly about getting the right job, the right relationship, the right home. It was all about making the right HUGE choice. It was scary–because what if you get a huge choice wrong?–and hard–because the HUGE choices take so much energy to change. Then, I learned that life is lived just as much in the smaller choices as the big ones. And I could make smaller choices to make my life happy and helpful now (instead of later, when I could change the big choices). For more, click here.
A Simple Principle That Makes Your Life And Business Peaceful: There is a simple principle that can guide us in our transactions and relationships to bring goodness to everyone involved. I’ve found, at the very least, it brings peace to my mind. But it also helps bring the kind of work associates into my life who I would choose as friends. It makes my life feel more meaningful. It is said to bring blessings. It is the principle of barakah. For more, click here.
I hope this all helps! Let me know your thoughts on any of the above by clicking here.