I’ve been asking some big questions lately. Maybe you have too.
- Why does it seem like the world is falling apart?
- How do I deal with the fear I feel — about the planet, our leaders, my health, the future?
- How do I go about transforming the world into my vision amid such chaos?
- Does my voice even matter?
During the day, I can stave off questions like these, distracted by screens and myriad responsibilities. But in the pre-dawn light, I wake and toss in my bed, my head filled with anxious wondering about where we go from here.
Thankfully, I recently realized: I can’t do it all, and I can’t do it alone.
Finding my first teacher
So I reached out to Dara, asking to run an idea by her.
Six years ago, when I first met Dara Marks, she was leading a week-long residential master class at Hedgebrook. The focus was on women writing about the archetypal hero’s journey and feminine heroic — myths revealing deep truths. It was incredible.
Though I shouldn’t have been surprised; Dara is a lauded Hollywood script consultant who evaluates screenplays to tell compelling stories of character transformation.
I asked Dara if these archetypal myths have relevance to the place humanity finds itself today. Not only did she say yes, she agreed to have a conversation with me about exactly how they apply to today and give humanity a glimpse of what lies ahead.
Further, she agreed to have the conversation live so that you could listen in and participate. (Yes, you!)
I was thrilled. Finally, someone I trust to give me guidance!
The next morning, instead of sleeplessly stewing in my bed, the names of other profound teachers came to mind whose guidance could be illuminating for these times.
My second teacher
So I reached out to Mark Silver and asked him the same questions. Mark is a successful entrepreneur, a former bi visibility activist, and practicing Sufi who converted from Judiasm. I adore Mark.
I asked if he’d be willing to talk with me about the Sufi views on fear and change — because we have a lot of both right now. It turns out that his tradition has a lot to say on these topics. He willingly agreed, and to share these thoughts with you too.
I was thrilled — again!
You know, sometimes when I plan something, the whole process is clunky and doesn’t come together well. This is not one of those times. Every “yes” felt like a Camino arrow, pointing me toward my next important endeavor.
My third teacher
I thought next of Desiree Adaway. I’m in awe of Desiree. Her consulting work focuses on auditing and assisting organizations in creating equity. “Love the collective more than you hate the system,” is her tagline.
I had the honor of working with Desiree last year to undertake making Americans of Conscience more equitable. We had some hard-but-crucial conversations about internalized racism, and analyzed how I might be perpetuating bias in our efforts. Each conversation was a revelation as she assisted me in making inner and outer structural changes that I’m proud of.
When I reached out, she too was willing to talk about the important inner work white people need to do to overcome systemic racism. There is no better time to do this than right now so we can change the world. I’m so happy she said yes.
And the final teacher
My mentor and soul friend, Lynne Maclean, has been crucial in assisting me in moving gently through trauma into healing. The modality she uses is often recommended for people with PTSD because it works without reliving the triggering events. She is gifted. As a result of our work together, I’ve felt more grounded than ever before in my life (and I’ve done a LOT of personal work!).
Trauma comes up when we do life-changing work. Whether it’s a result of the news, or media overwhelm, or fear of illness, our nervous system can short circuit unexpectedly. Lynne teaches how to allow that energy to dissipate and to gently bring ourselves back into our bodies. It is powerful, powerful work.
When I asked Lynne if she could share how address trauma triggered by doing world-changing work, she was willing and delighted. She’s eager to share how ways to be resourceful, grounded, and engaged at the same time.
Would you like to sit in on these conversations?
We’re navigating rough waters, my friends. We cannot go it alone. Having a guide at the helm to point the way forward can be vital. That’s who these teachers are to me, and I’m eager to share them with you.
So, you’re invited to sit (virtually) with my most important teachers and talk about the tough questions we face and the ways we can sail forward our hearts and souls intact.
I invite you to Activist Spirit: A soulful retreat for people of conscience.
Thanks for considering it, and please let me know if you have any questions. I’m so excited for you to meet these special people.