Month: July 2016

Downshifting

The Peace of Wild Things By Wendell Berry When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds. I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief. I come into the presence of still water. And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light. For a...

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Mindfulness in an Age of Distraction

 [The Following article includes excerpts from the forthcoming book The Great Re-imagining: Spirituality in an Age of Apocalypse, available from Homebound Publications]  When was the last time you were alone? I mean really alone—not connected to the global monoculture through a smart phone or wifi. It is likely that it’s been a while, or at least that such moments have been infrequent. For most of us, something has happened very recently that has transformed our consciousness and literally reshaped the human brain. We will call it the Tech Revolution. We have entered the information age. It is telling that...

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Confronting the Void We Avoid

Comedians play a unique and vital role in society. Like the tribal tricksters and court jesters of yore, they serve to expose what is normally hidden, dropping truth in the guise of humor. One example of this subversive talent comes from Louis CK, whose 2013 rant about smartphones has since gone viral several times over. Chatting with Conan O’Brien, Louis describes smartphones as “toxic,” explaining, “You need to build an ability to just be yourself and not be doing something. That’s what the phones are taking away.” With that point made, Louis swan dives into the deep end. “Underneath...

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DRUM’s Soulful Beat: Desis Embodying Radical Healing

 Last winter, I had the privilege of learning more about the organization Desis Rising Up and Moving (DRUM) through gathering data for my dissertation study. Before beginning the project, I understood little beyond DRUM’s mission. I knew DRUM as “a multigenerational, membership-led organization of low-wage South Asian immigrant workers and youth based in New York City” (DRUM 2014). I respected their intention to build political power and leadership amongst working class immigrants in the South Asian community: I wanted to learn more about DRUM’s approach to organizing campaigns in Jackson Heights, Queens. The intent of my dissertation was to...

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Forgotten. Never gone. Just forgotten.

An abandoned schoolhouse. Bricks made of eternal fire. Surrounded by sidewalks serene, though far too silent. Nearby elms watch in witness, impotent guardians, but lovely still. Upon entering the steel doors of time, I hear the echoes of children, long since gone. Their multitude of lessons – learned and unlearned – permeate empty halls. Behind each door, the discarded sanctuaries of teachers. What if our souls merged with theirs every time we read a book, or raised a question, or rose above our own foolishness? I stand now, at the front of a classroom. Millennia of educators course through my veins. A...

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