[Catalyst 4 - 2016] International Women’s Day & Transforming Aging
By Stephen Dinan, founder and CEO of The Shift Network
International Women’s Day is on March 8, which we are proud to celebrate since we are deeply committed to promoting the role of women in healing and transforming the world. For our world to create a sacred, whole, and balanced culture, women simply must be given equal opportunity and honor.
And there is a LONG way to go. Here is a sobering quote from the International Women’s Day website:
We strongly believe that for a new era of peace, health, and sustainability to grow, there must be a rebalancing and harmonizing of the feminine with the masculine. Women have been marginalized and suppressed for millennia and we are therefore keen on bringing forth the wisdom and power of the feminine and in supporting women in stepping forward in leadership roles.
My beloved wife Devaa Haley Mitchell and I will be celebrating International Women’s Day at the Yoga Kumbh Mela in Haridwar, India on the banks of Mother Ganga. We are currently in Rishikesh, India at the International Yoga Festival with our good friends Swami Chidanand Saraswati, Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, the UPLIFT team and the wonderful friends who have joined us on the Sacred Pilgrimage into the Soul of India.
Our friends at UPLIFT will be sharing video updates of our experience here and at the Kumbh Mela and International Women’s Day in upcoming editions.
In this edition of The Catalyst, Devaa has provided an article about how women are stepping forward to provide safe drinking water to one million people in 30 days. We invite you to join us in this endeavor. Donate Here: Clean Water for Rural India. (Also, See Featured Media, Featured Article and Shift Philanthropy.)
Devaa’s article is a perfect lead to the World Water Day on March 22. We are delighted to be partnering with Swamiji, Sadhviji, UPLIFT and UNIFY in a synchronized global blessing of water taking place on Saturday, March 19 — Bless the Water, click here to learn more.
Our Member Profile is of our friend Amelía Aeon Karris. You may remember Amelia co-led a World Water Day celebration last year in Oakland, only to have her house burn down days afterwards. Amelia has risen from the ashes by writing a new book, Synchronicity: Unlock Your Divine Destiny. We also have a beautiful Member Profile from Emma-Lee Luther about two courageous women in India, Sushila and Musi Dei.
60 days to optimal health, healing and wellbeing in this life-changing free online series. You can still hear from quite a few of the 40+ top doctors, teachers and healers — who include Dave Asprey, Caroline Myss, don Miguel Ruiz, John Gray, Donna Eden, Alberto Villoldo, Skai Juice, Pedram Shojai, JJ Virgin, Gregg Braden and many other experts in their fields.
Also, the African American Wisdom Summit is still available and it is receiving rave reviews from listeners around the world. You will love the interviews with LeVar Burton, Cynthia James, Nikki Giovanni, Sonya Renee Taylor, Keith Mitchell, Etoy Ridgnal and many more! (Click here to register free).
Join us for a Global Wave of Sister Circles on International Women's Day! Thousands of women are gathering locally in circles around the world to connect, uplift, and transform together. To learn more, click here.
You can still join! TheWaterbearers.org seek 100 Women from around the world to become Team Leaders for our upcoming campaign — To Get One Million People Access to Clean Water by World Water Day. Join us from February 22 – March 22, and help make history! To learn more, click here. (Also, see Devaa Haley Mitchell’s Featured Article)
In just a few days I will be winging my way towards India, along with Shift Co-Founder Stephen Dinan (who is also my husband). Together we’ll be leading a fabulous group of pilgrims on a journey of heart and soul. One of the key aspects of our trip will be the seva service projects we'll be doing in partnership with the Parmarth Niketan ashram and the Divine Shakti Foundation.
And we’ve learned that one of the biggest issues in this region of India is clean water.
Most of us do and will suffer losses and diminishments of certain capacities as the years go by.
And unfortunately, our culture in general has come to define our elder chapters by these losses and diminishments.
This all-too-narrow understanding of aging relegates older adults to being seen primarily as needy — diminished beings who will likely require expensive care, while no longer having a relevant role to play in society as they live out the ever-increasing number of years after retirement age.
At 1:21am on the night of July 21st 2015, I heard the loud and sudden noise of exploding glass. I jumped up, saw the flames and soon realized that everyone else was still asleep. “Wake up!” I screamed, “The house is on fire!” Within twenty minutes the flames had torn through the roof of my Oakland community home, and all six members were outside, mouths agape in horror and awe watching our earthly possessions burn to the ground. Thank god no one was hurt.
Sometimes the simplest steps can empower change and deliver unmeasurable outcomes for generations to come. By actively engaging in societal change at a grass roots level to produce capacity building outcomes for communities has been a focus of ‘The Hunger Project’s’ work across the planet. By enabling women to implement sanitation projects in their homes, in turn it has inspired them to become leaders in civil engagement not only in their own communities but in neighbouring towns as well.
International Women's Day is March 8. How will you mark the day? — Celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women. Yet let's also be aware progress has slowed in many places across the world, so urgent action is needed to accelerate gender parity. To learn more how you can celebrate and take the pledge for parity, click here.
Support Criminal Justice Reform in the United States
There is significant momentum and bi-partisan support for criminal justice reform via Senate bill S. 2123, the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2015. Mass incarceration has escalated since the 1980s tough-on-crime era and the numbers are staggering. The US houses 2.2 million prisoners — five times as many as 30 years ago. This is not due to an increase in crime rates but due to changes in state and federal sentencing laws. Young black men are disproportionately affected; more black men are imprisoned today than were enslaved in 1850. African Americans serve nearly as much time in prison for nonviolent drug offenses (58.7 months) as whites do for violent offenses (61.7 months).
The new bill will give judges more discretion to consider the whole person, will reduce mandatory minimum sentences and lower the population of federal prisons. Call your senator today and ask them to support passage of this very important social justice legislation. Capitol switchboard: 800-826-3688
Recovery 2.0 Conference Recordings Available!This recent global online event brought together the voices of 25 experts and thought leaders on recovery and addiction. The conference was hosted by Tommy Rosen, the author of the acclaimed book: Recovery 2.0: Move Beyond Addiction and Upgrade Your Life. The recordings provide cutting-edge interviews full of inspirational, spiritual, medical and practical approaches to overcoming addictions of all kinds. There is hope. You will become more aware, more empowered, and have the tools you need for successful recovery, optimal health and a life of fulfilling purpose... beyond addiction! To learn more, click here.
The Gandhi King Season for Nonviolence (SNV) commences on January 30, in cities across the globe. The annual 64 day campaign, co-founded in 1998 by Dr. Arun Gandhi and The Association for Global New Thought (AGNT), is an educational, media and grassroots awareness campaign spanning the January 30 and April 4 memorial anniversaries of Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. To learn about the many ways you, your school and community can participate, click here.
FREE: Nonviolence for Beginners, the free online 8-week course by Metta Center. To learn more, click here. We wish you much success in contributing peace to the world!
PRAXIS/MONDRAGON Study Tour — May 22–28, Mondragon, Spain — Praxis Peace Institute offers the most comprehensive study/tour available at the Mondragón Cooperatives in the Basque region of Spain. Developed over nine years, this program includes in-depth lectures at Mondragón Educational Center (Otalora), visits to Mondragón cooperative businesses, an R&D center, Mondragón University, Mondragón Bank HQ, the Basque Culinary Arts University (part of Mondragón University), the Basque Parliament where we have a special session with the Director of the Department of Peace, and much more. Details on our website - click here.
Alliance for Peacebuilding (AfP) 2016 Annual Conference — May 24 to 26, 2016 — Washington, DC — AfP’s 2016 Annual Conference will examine the newest developments in the peacebuilding field, and will capture the “view from the edges,” where peacebuilding is innovating, “looking around corners,” and scanning the horizon to revolutionize the field. The Annual Conference serves as dynamic space for AfP members to network with the broader peace and security community, including funders, policymakers, members of the military, and professionals from a broad range of related disciplines, such as development, human rights, and environmental protection. The conference provides unique opportunities for to exchange ideas, reflect on international crises, discuss the most important issues in the peacebuilding field, and develop collaborative projects. To learn more, click here.
The Happiness Track — Drawing on the latest findings from the fields of cognitive psychology and neuroscience — research on happiness, resilience, willpower, compassion, positive stress, creativity, mindfulness — Dr. Emma Seppälä, science director of Stanford University's Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education, shows that finding happiness and fulfillment may, in fact, be the most productive thing we can do to thrive professionally. Filled with practical advice on how to apply these scientific findings to our daily lives, The Happiness Track is a life-changing guide to fast tracking our success and creating the anxiety-free life we want. For more information, click here.
Meaningful coincidences are on the rise. Spotting and navigating synchronicity is like taking a rocket ship to your life’s purpose. In Synchronicity: Unlock Your Divine Destiny, Amelía Aeon Karris shares seven ancient keys for how you can increase synchronicity and live in absolute flow. Click here to learn more and find out how to get a FREE copy of her new book.
The Spiritual Life TV Channel features free wisdom teachings from many spiritual traditions and gives a practical focus that shows how a person can use these teachings to live a more spiritual life. New videos feature: James O’Dea, Edgar Mitchell, Barbara Marx Hubbard, Marilyn Schlitz, Gleen Mullin, Stephen Dinan, Philip Hellmich, and more! To learn more, click here.
AWAKE: The Life of Yogananda - Now available on Netflix, Amazon and other livestream programs. Plus, DVDs available with subtitles in Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German, Dutch and Japanese. Plus there are new film showings in Australia and United States! You also can bring AWAKE to your yoga studio or community. To learn more click here. (The filmmakers were interviewed in the Yoga Day Summit, the recording is available for free.)
World Peace Library — Free Resource — Be sure to take advantage of the World Peace Library, a wide-ranging resource on peace newly compiled by the Shift Network: It contains more than 300 inspiring talks and mini-workshops from individuals such as Archbishop Tutu, Nobel Laureate Jody Williams, Jane Goodall, Deepak Chopra, James O'Dea, Karen Armstrong, Chief Phil Lane and many more. With neuroscientists and lamas, faith-based activists and political leaders, this Library offers something for all in their peacebuilding efforts. The Shift Network has made the World Peace Library a free resource for all and encourages its use to promote peace in your families, schools, and wider community.
International Women's Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.To learn more, click here.
Unify: The Global Sisterhood — Join a Global Wave of Sister Circles on International Women's Day! Thousands of women are gathering locally in circles around the world to connect, uplift, and transform together. To learn more, click here.
Amadora is a duo, Eden and Ilan, who make electronic, world fusion "prayerformance" music. The word Amadora means "She who loves" or "the adoration of the Divine Mother," and Eden channels a powerful transmission from the Goddess through her voice and the lyrics, while Ilan produces a gorgeous instrumental counterpart. Their most recent album, Dream Awake, features 9 beautiful and inspirational songs created with the intention of healing and awakening the planet by opening the hearts of all those who hear the music. It's easy to feel moved, figuratively and literally, as you listen to this danceable and unique album. To listen to Dream Awake: click here. To learn more about Amadora, click here.