Surviving Orlando

I wish I could tell you that the path of love is a certain and rapid route to understanding and that with a little more love, flowers will replace guns and bombs everywhere and everyone will get along. We know that’s not true.

But we also know that killing or even demeaning our enemies is not and has never been a reliable path to understanding and tolerance. It provides an outlet for our fury. It may have an effect in the short term. But it leads to even more anger, resentment, and polarisation in the long run. “Us” and “them” become more entrenched, more foreign to one another, and more certain of the “otherness” of their opponents....our love will not stop killing and terrorism today nor will it eradicate the hatred and anger that fuel it. Whilst we can not change today with a snap of our fingers, our love can change the future. Our commitment to compassion and understanding can change the way our children and their children will relate to one another. Our actions today determine the shape of the world in which our children and our children’s children will live.

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Leading from Health

A lot of the thinking for the healthy leadership concepts grew out of what therapists learned when they worked with families. Often, they found that when they worked with one family member who appeared to be the ill one - the patient - it was not effective. But when they worked with the whole family unit, there was a big change in the so-called patient. 

The behaviour of the family unit was much more than could be expected by looking at the individuals separately. The complex ways those different individuals interacted was what created the overall behaviour. And that behaviour might lead to one person - the patient - carrying all the illness for the rest. 

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Ramadan: Practice makes Progress

What we do can change how we think. We might imagine that the only way to change our actions is to change how we think and feel. But it’s been proven true that the reverse is also true. For example, smiling can make you feel happier, a confident pose can make you feel more confident, and generous acts can make you more generous... as Aristotle put it, “We are what we repeatedly do.”

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Admirable Addictions

Admirable Addictions

Scott Peck wrote “The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers.”

Whether we call them addictions or distractions or dedications, most of us have the things we do that keep us from wrestling with our challenges and therefore keep us from growing.

 

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Helping each other

Helping each other

Winston Churchill said "We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give." The way we give to one another is what creates and strengthens our interconnected lives. It is giving that weaves and fortifies the bonds between us. It is our mutual giving that ensures that each of us hears, over and over, that we have a place in the family of things.

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Justice & Mental Illness

Justice & Mental Illness

We are not either mentally ill or healthy - one or another - like an on and off switch. There are no absolutes in mental illness any more than there are in physical illness. Are you 100% healthy or 0% healthy? If you’re alive, the answer is no to both. You can only hit 0% one way, and at that point it doesn’t matter anymore because as long as you’re alive, you’re somewhere between the extremes.

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Just a consumer or Just Consumer?

Just a consumer or Just Consumer?

“We seldom consider how much of our lives we must render in return for some object we barely want, seldom need, buy only because it was put before us...And this is understandable given the workings of our system where without a job we perish, where if we don't want a job and are happy to get by we are labeled irresponsible, non-contributing leeches on society. But if we hire a fleet of bulldozers, tear up half the countryside and build some monstrous factory, casino or mall, we are called entrepreneurs, job-creators, stalwarts of the community. Maybe we should all be shut away on some planet for the insane. Then again, maybe that is where we are.” (Ferenc Máté)

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Not Just Light Bulbs: Environmental Justice

Not Just Light Bulbs: Environmental Justice

For there to be significant justice for the underprivileged in the face of the coming human-created climate disasters, we will all have to sacrifice. And that makes it all very, very real.
How much are we each willing to give up to avoid a desperately unjust life for our children or our children’s children? How much are we willing to give up to avoid millions of people becoming stateless climate change refugees? 

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