[Catalyst 20 – October 1, 2017] Overcoming Adversity
By Stephen Dinan, founder and CEO of The Shift Network
First, I want to share how excited we are by the seeds of collaboration planted by last week’s California Vision 2020 conference in Sacramento!
Multiple initiatives with world-changing potential are emerging that unify the best of our transformational work with grassroots social change and transpartisan political solutions. Many presenters commented that it was one of the best events they’ve been to.
We’ve decided to turn all the amazing videos into a new Summit for you in December and will share more details soon!
This week’s Catalyst focuses on Overcoming Adversity. By definition, the circle of life demands that we experience the full range of what this life has to offer... and adversity is an integral part of the natural order of things. No one escapes its bittersweet embrace.
Facing adversity with clear eyes and an open heart often leads to the creation of new skills, new ideas, and new movements for positive change (we witnessed many such initiatives at California Vision 2020).
For those who are coasting through life and not developing and making full use of their unique gifts, a hardship may be the only way for the universe to get their attention.
Most spiritual seekers will acknowledge that adversity is the catalyst that prompted them to search for deeper meaning and purpose. Chances are that your own inner journey didn’t begin in earnest until a crisis turned your world inside out and upside down.
When we come to realize that adversity can be a great teacher, we can shift from being reactive and learning through pain to being proactive and learning through joy.
In fact, as awareness grows, we realize that adversity may be a signal that our current path is leading us in a direction away from our highest good.
The moment you understand why you repeatedly find yourself in the same types of dysfunctional relationships, unfulfilling jobs, or needless conflicts, you can choose to break the pattern, start living more consciously, and free yourself up for healthier experiences.
In this candid 12-minute audio interview, beloved Shift faculty Andrew Harvey shares his thoughts on the subject of betrayal — and explains how the most painful period of his life shaped him in ways he never could have imagined.
Click here to listen to the interview and to read the transcript.
In a moving, heartfelt and at times downright funny presentation, Solomon gives a powerful call to action to forge meaning from our biggest struggles. This brilliant and eloquent talk may just bring you to your knees to thank God for all the difficult experiences you lived through.
Infidelity is the ultimate betrayal. But does it have to be? Relationship therapist Esther Perel examines why people cheat, and unpacks why affairs are so traumatic: because they threaten our emotional security. In infidelity, she sees something unexpected — an expression of longing and loss. Start watching this powerful video and you’ll understand why it’s racked up over 4 million views.
Shall I or shall I not? I had just received an email where I had to make a fundamental choice: Stick to my ethics or go for publicity.
I had been asked to participate in a dolphin summit because years ago I had written a bestselling book on dolphins called, Wisdom of the Dolphins. I had been speaking at a number of conferences about dolphins, telepathy, their power to heal, and the healing effects dolphins have had on handicapped children. All of my research had been with dolphins in the wild.
In the bathroom one morning, as I was brushing my teeth, a numinous presence announced itself behind me. Not an actual ghost exactly, more a mounting apparition of dread, a condensation of feelings so thick it appeared to envelop me as I stood there holding my toothbrush. The ghost invited me to have a figurative seat. I paused and listened. The tone of its voice was more poignant than scary. The ghost told me it was a distillation of all my greatest fears. It was the combined essence of all that I dreaded, the dark thing I'd been running away from. This ghost simply wanted me to listen.
As a Native New York Jew who grew up in the counter-culture of New Mexico and spent my 20s in northern California, the American South is as foreign to me as Mongolia. Maybe more. And so visiting the Bible Belt is a perfect opportunity for me to walk my talk and reject the impulse to “otherize.”
Otherizing is a word I thought I made up, but then I found it in the Urban Dictionary online. Also my friend Elizabeth Lesser uses it in a TED talk. So I’m in good company. Thou shalt not otherize is one of the pillars of the Judeo-Christian traditions. It did not make it onto the stone tablets, but (IMHO) it should have.
Is your “panic button” being triggered this past year? Is the planet’s panic button being set off? Is humanity’s panic button being activated on a collective level?
If you watch or read the news, you would have to say yes; everyone is being pushed to their limits, is being set off, is being triggered, is going off for no apparent reason... or for very apparent reasons.
My seventeen months from hell started on a beautiful May day in 2008. As former chair of Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign in Minnesota, I was at a high-powered lunch with the editor-in-chief of The Economist, the former chairman of Cargill, a few other business bigwigs and my dad, who had once been a top executive at Medtronic.
I was twenty-nine and feeling pretty good about myself. When Romney was in town, which was often, I accompanied him on meet-and-greets with local executives. I was president of the building maintenance company my mom had founded and a freshly minted law school graduate. My wife, Evonne, and I had a five-year-old son, Jaxon, and a two-year-old daughter, Liv, and she was pregnant again. If it sounds like I had a lot going on, yeah, I was running. Hard. I’d get four hours of sleep a night and hop back on the treadmill.
Lunch had barely started when my phone rang. I kicked it to voicemail. It rang a second time, then a third. I was a bit agitated. I excused myself from the table, checked the phone, and saw Evonne’s number. Now I was really agitated; I had asked her not to call during important meetings. I called back and said, “What is going on?” She said, “I’m in labor and we just lost the baby.” I was stunned. I felt helpless because there was nothing I could say or do to comfort her.
Race. Climate. Politics. We live in a time of disruption. We can't wait for someone else to solve the collective challenges we face. Join the Omega Institute for a 3-day, live-streaming and on-demand conference featuring Van Jones, Amy Goodman, Bill Moyers, Opal Tometi, and other courageous voices. For as little as $5, gain insight and tools to navigate these complex times.
Click here to access the event’s crowdfunding page for more information. With a $5 donation or more, access the full program, help open the event to thousands, and gain insight and tools to navigate these complex times.
Have you ever wanted to know exactly how to manifest your purpose, your soulmate, and a better life for yourself and even the planet? Or, do you need some inspiration to stay motivated and keep the faith in these times?
You are warmly invited to the DREAM BIG online summit. Come and listen to 30+ speakers presenting deep insights into how magical this universe is, and what you can do to help bring about a greater life for yourself and the planet.
The Sattva Summit is a boutique conscious gathering, offering the opportunity for yogis from across the globe to gather as a community for a week of deep healing, expansion and reasonless joy at The Sattva Retreat, a luxurious sanctuary nestled in the foothills of the Himalayans. We will gather as a community to deepen in our silence through daily group meditation and rituals, harmonize with the body in our yoga practice with globally renowned teachers, connect to ancient yogic wisdom and the evolutionary teachings of consciousness, and nourish our bodies with healing foods from leading Ayurvedic chefs of India, while enjoying live music, chanting and dancing. We will also have the opportunity to discover the beauty that Rishikesh has to offer, including hikes to Himalayan villages, temple tours, ganga dips, cave meditations, rafting, ayurvedic spa treatments, cooking classes, and much more! Click here to watch a short video invitation to the Sattva Summit.
Join us for a week of deep spiritual exploration in the serene and beautiful surrounds of the Blue Spirit Yoga and Meditation Retreat Center in Nosara, Costa Rica (Blue Spirit has been named a Yoga Journal “Best Yoga Escape 2017”). We will be breaking down the walls of resistance by going deeper into peace and tranquility through meditation. The week will include in-depth exploration of the technology of Kundalini Yoga for re-rooting, rest and restoration of the Complete Self from the stresses of daily life. You’ll develop a fulfilling everyday discipline, creating devotional practice with Sadhana at the ambrosial hour, meditation and chanting, and breath walks on the oceanfront, experiencing deep immersion into the Soul! For more information, click here.
The Global Indigenous Wisdom Library is a collection of audio and video interviews featuring Indigenous leaders from around the world sharing prayers, sacred songs, prophecies, spiritual teachings and pathways to healing, as well as concrete examples for birthing a new era — one in which all members of the human family are treated with respect, understanding, compassion and justice. This sacred wisdom is important medicine for us all. The production of The Global Indigenous Wisdom Library is a gift from The Shift Network, designed to inspire, inform and involve you by highlighting the voices and important messages of Indigenous leaders from around the world. We thank all the speakers who have contributed to this body of knowledge! To learn more, click here.
Book by Stephen Dinan: Sacred America, Sacred World. Infused with visionary power, Sacred America, Sacred World is a manifesto for our country’s evolution that is both political and deeply spiritual. It offers profound hope that America can grow beyond our current challenges and manifest our noblest destiny, which the book shows is rooted in sacred principles that transcend left or right political views. To order your copy, click here.
World Peace Library. Designed for the layperson and professional peacebuilder alike, the World Peace Library has over 425 audio and video interviews with some of the most remarkable, inspiring peacebuilders in the world available to you at NO COST. You’ll find hundreds of hours of inspirational, peacebuilding, compassion-spreading talks and trainings at your fingertips with this FREE global resource. There’s no way you can’t come away from the World Peace Library deeply inspired, transformed — and part of the solution. Click here to find out how to take peace to the next level — and help co-create a global culture of peace that leaves a legacy of good for our children, our children’s children and all of humanity and life on earth.
If you would like to submit something to The Catalyst, please see the submission guidelines: click here.
Reach out to someone you know who is struggling. Don’t offer advice; just be fully present and listen with your whole heart. Your genuine gesture of support will let them know that they are cared for and they are not alone. Even a brief conversation can mean the world to someone who’s going through a difficult time.
On Friday, October 20, please join others to contribute one day’s wage to the International Temples Project (ITP) an International fund dedicated to public benefit.
The International Temples Project was founded by Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso with the aim to introduce the Buddhist faith and practice of the New Kadampa Tradition publicly, and to show how individuals and society benefit through the practice of Buddhism in modern day life.
Constantly adapting to meet the needs of modern society, the International Temples Project presently achieves its aim through creating traditional and nontraditional temples, meditation and retreat centres, and through the activities of World Peace cafés and Tharpa Publications.
Polarization is destroying us. Let's fix this. The way we get news and information, and how we discuss it, affects our world.
News, social media and even search results have dramatically changed in the last several years, becoming so narrowly filtered, biased and personalized that we are becoming less informed and less tolerant of different people and ideas.
Unlike regular news services, AllSides exposes bias and provides multiple angles on the same story so you can quickly get the full picture, not just one slant.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The co-founders of AllSides, John Gable and Joan Blades, were presenters at California Vision 2020. They are from different political backgrounds, working together to help the U.S. overcome the adversity of polarization.
Danish bassist and composer Jens Kristian Andersen’s “From the Nocturnal Chironian” — a musical tribute to Chiron, the Centaur Chief — is a synthesis of American jazz and European classical music, and the interpenetration of astrology, Greek mythology and Jungian archetypal psychology. This decidedly original album features trumpet, bass clarinet, and cello.
An All About Jazz review notes that “a couple of his pieces, notably ‘The Wounded Healer’ and ‘The Mediator,’ reference classic bebop and post-bop tunes in various subtle and crafty ways. ‘Chariklo’ is a gorgeous yet rather simple tune that uses a repetitive, lilting melodic motif as a jumping-off point. Tough, no-holds-barred swing is the prime directive on ‘Puerperal Psychosis.’”