MEND Season 3 - Episode 48

Yoga for the Revolution with Carrie Ingoglia

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Happy Voting Day!!!!!

If you’ve listened long enough to this show, you know I am a semi-proud member of the woo club.

I’ve drunk the wheat-grass-flavored koolaid and donned the galaxy-themed stretchy pants and played joyous, studious & deeply-driven rounds of solo Twister on my little sticky mat.  


For better or worse, I am a self-identified yogi.

But, as you also may know, I tend to want to throw up some caveats and barriers between me and that crowd.  

Yogis as white, affluent, cis-gendered folks who achieve enlightenment through bettering their handstands.  

Nope.  Not it.

Yogis who, when confronted with the atrocity of gun-violence or police brutality or the proposed erasure of non-binary peoples, prefer to do a little slow-motion disco on their sticky mats, send light & love, and let some other, less spiritual being do the dirty work of confronting this icky bit of humanity.  

Please don’t toss me in this bin.

Yogis who think it’s enough just to concentrate on elevating their own vibration as a way to make the world a better place.

Yogis who use practice as a way to retreat from the world and it’s problems rather than a way to arm ourselves to confront them.

Yogis who use spirituality as just one more consumer product they can buy, soak up, and then toss by the wayside as it suits them, spraying themselves in its’ ephermal mist and never letting its’ harder teachings penetrate the skin.

As you can see, I’ve got some beef with the current mainstream yoga culture, as it were.  

So, it’s always a delight and a surprise when I come across someone who is using the practice to move counter to the culture.

Who is not so fixated on the perfect handstand, but, rather on using the physical practice to perfect their character, learn how to sit with the uncomfortable and confront injustice both inside themselves and in the world.

These are the types of conversations I love to have.

So, I was thrilled to have this talk with Carrie Ingoglia, an Ayurvedic Yoga Teacher, who is the writer and producer of the podcast Yoga For the Revolution. I say more about this inside the intro of the talk, so listen up for more details about that.

Carrie and I talked about carrying the practice beyond the mat, learning how to be uncomfortable and some of the people we look to in this world of the spiritual who are also doing real-world good, as well.  

Far from a conversation with two polished, lifelong devotees & activists, what you are about to listen to is a real-life chat between two, heartfelt, imperfect women who are wanting to do better.  Who are not always certain of what the next step is, but are willing to move into the gap, nonetheless.

Like the physical practice, it is always an invitation.  To get quiet. To see where we are moving out of alignment - with our hearts, our beliefs and our calling.  And to take steps - humble, daily, faltering ones - to move out into a better way forward.

For more on Carrie, her podcast and the other great work that she does, make sure to check the show notes.  And, as always, if this chat has touched you in any way, and you want to add to the conversation, please make sure to leave a rating and review in iTunes.  

And, of course, if you haven’t already, get out there and cast your ballot.  

It’s not the be-all-end-all, of course for righting the wrongs of our culture.  

Voting doesn’t buy us a free pass to go back to whatever-ing the other 364 days of the year, right?

But it’s a start.

MEND Season 3 - Episode 47

Taking Poetic Action with Leslie Castellano

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“Artists to my mind are the real architects of change, and not the political legislators who implement change after the fact. ”

William S. Burroughs

When it comes to leading lives of passion & creativity, we tend to believe in a set binary.

There are those of us - so we say - that are meant to write, paint, dance, create - make the world a bit more vivid and beautiful by our voice, our touch, our presence.

It is the work to which we are called to in this life.

Then, the same story goes - there are those who are meant to engage in matters of policy.  Civic discourse and dialogue. Who can best affect change at the structural, boardroom, nuts-and-bolts, dare I say, utterly artless side of cultural exchange.  

There are the artists.  

And then there are the policy makers.  

And ne’er shall the two entwine.  

They are made for such entirely different things in this life.
My guest today is someone who tosses this limited theory out on it’s head.

Leslie Castellano is a local performance artist, teacher, dancer & businesswoman - who also happens to be running for City Council - Ward 1, in Eureka, to be precise - this year.  

In this talk, we discuss her decision to venture out of her long-tenure as contributing artist to her local community to a person who is striving to affect policy, as well.

We talk about the intersection of Art & Politics.  

About shifting out of our individual and collective comfort zones to lobby on behalf of the type of world we want to live in - which sometimes means canvassing, making phone calls, and going door-to-door, rather than simply writing a song or creating a dance piece.  

At the heart of each of these impulses, Leslie states,  is a driving desire to care for people and build community.

Through her efforts as an activist, artist & community organizer, she longs to build a society where all people are valued.

We talk about where this impulse has taken her thus far and the places she’s venturing into just now.

I hope you’ll be inspired, as I am, by the work and presence of this wonderful woman.

She’s a reminder to me that even though we all have our designated comfort zones - we can step out of them.  

We can take on new roles, new languages & new possibilities to begin to mend the culture where we live.  

There is a place for ART.  For beauty & symbolism & delight.

And there is a place for re-writing laws and by-laws.  For upending the current structure and mapping out an entirely different system than the one we’ve known.

And there is a way to synthesize the two - so that together they - we - all of us - can THRIVE.

MEND Season 3 - Episode 46

Re-Making the Culture with Kelly Diels

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Several years ago, you may have heard me mention here or there - I made the decision to step more fully into the online space.  

I came to the realization that if I was going to eke out a living for myself as an herbalist & yoga teacher, I was going to have to connect with a larger community than the one I had access to inside my small, college town.

So I started the work of learning the basics of online presence.  Marketing.  Messaging. 

Learning how to build an audience and a following so that you have some folks to share your work and services with.  

 But I ran into some issues.  

 

From what I could see - and still see by and large - is there’s a working model out there.  

For yogis, in particular, this model appears to be - thin, able-bodied, white-presenting, cis-gendered folks, scantily-clad in gorgeous sunlit studios, or dreamy Costa Rican beaches - doing super-duper advanced bendy things, tossing a few hashtag-blessed, hashtag-YogaEveryDamnDay type things into the mix - and then making mention of their upcoming workshop or teacher training.  

 The message embedded into the medium was - and continues to be…

“Don’t you wanna be like me?…  I’m perpetually smiling and conventionally beautiful and I live a life of opulence and ease…. Oh yeah - and I’m deeply spiritual too - you can tell this by the amazing arm-balances I do and the sanskrit terms I use.  

Sign up for my thing and find out how you can be glowy and enlightened too!!!  

Link in bio.  “

 

I tried to emulate this approach a for awhile.  

Take some well--constructed photographs of me in a handstand.  Me doing something nifty and bendy 

Me looking happy and smiley while hoisting my leg up past my shoulders.  

This is how you share your yoga stuff right?

 

But the trouble was - this stuff is just So Not Me.  

I’m not thin.  

I can’t do a vast array of incredible acrobatics with my body.

Furthermore, my own experience of yoga and long-term practice has taught me - that the true work of transformation - be it personal or collective - looks very different than a simple outward pose.  

 I wanted to tlak about the work of healing that I had experienced and that I wanted others to experience as well.

I wanted to engage a conversastion about spirituality and practice that has absolutely nothing to do with shiny, happy, people on Central American beaches.  

I wanted to extend the invitation of this practice I so loved out beyond the confines of the rich & white & bendy. 

I wanted to find a way to make the messaging about Spirituality as a way to more deeply engage with the world and it’s problems and it’s inhabitants. 

Not simply retreat from it. 

 But where was there a model I could follow there?

 Enter Kelly Diels.

Kelly is a writer & feminist marketing consultant.

Over the course of a years-long, in-depth analysis of what she saw happening in social media, she came to coin the term “Female Lifestyle Empowerment Brand” & it was through this work that I first came across her.

 

Female Lifestyle Empowerment Brand.

Sounds like a good thing right?

 

Turns out, as Kelly puts it, it is rather... ,

“An archetype women must comply with and embody in order to be deserving of rights and resources

AND

A marketing strategy that leverages social status and white privilege to create authority over other women.”

 

In other words, the current model operating out there - not just in the yoga and wellness game - but across multiple levels of entrepreneurship - is a predatory model.  That replicates and sustains the very systems and practices that we as healers, creatives and feminists - want to take down. 

 So what’s the solution?

 Over the last year, I’ve had the great privilege of learning from Kelly and some of the other wonderful people who are a part of her community and work.  

 

We sat down to talk about what it looks like to move into and inhabit the online space with the same integrity and grit we bring to other areas or our work and life.  

On taking the long view - and on the power of being a continual Disruptor - saying and doing the uncomfortable things - even when it feels like you aren’t getting anywhere.  

 

We talked about money and vulnerability and how we create access to our work - that of healing and culture-making and transformation - to those who need it most - while still staying solvent and buoyant ourselves.

 Through my own tutelage with Kelly, I have learned that there is indeed something very wrong with the existing model.  I now have language around how to unpack it.  And furthermore - my own vision and language of a better way forward. 

 

It’s possible to do good, healing, transformative work in the world.

It’s possible to make a living too - and avoid the gross, predatory marketing models that we’ve absorbed.  

 The culture may be deeply broken - but we can continue to step in - and in so doing, gradually create a counter-culture of our own.  

 

Together  - as Ms. Diels tells us – we can thrive

 

A note: At the end of our conversation, Kelly mentions some upcoming offerings she has lined up - one of them being her fabulous “Little Birds & Layer Cakes” social media workshop.  I want to make mention that the date listed here inside the podcast is wrong. 

The new, revised date for this workshop will be this upcoming Saturday, October 20th.  And a little shout-out I’ve taken this workshop myself and it’s grand.  HIghly recomend.  

 

Take a peek at the show notes to find out more about Kelly and the work that she does and where you can find her and her culture-making work and words.  

 

As always, if you’ve enjoyed this talk, please take hte time to leave a review or rating in iTunes so that others can find us, as well.  

 

I hope you enjoy this talk.  

May it uplift and fortify you in the ways you are striving to heal and mend the world around you, too.

MEND Season 3 - Episode 45

Mama Bear

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Hello.  

Welcome back.  

You may notice a couple changes around here

For starters, you may have logged how it’s only 1 voice you’re now hearing at the beginning of this show - instead of two.  


Yes, this means what you think it means, my friends.


My beloved friend & co-creator Anne Fricke is temporarily stepping down from her work on this show.  

She is in a season of her life - as you will hear inside this chat I ahd with her a week back - where there is much calling for her attention and her care.

And so, after much talk back and forth, she has decided to step back for a season of this podcast.  

Doing that amazing thing that women have been taught never to do - of saying No - for this moment in time - to this tiny tributary - so that she can dive deep into the other currents, maybe even Oceans of possiblity that are waiting for her to explore.  


But I’ll let her tell you more about those.


You may have noticed that there’s a slightly different through-line for the stories we’re collecting this season.  


If I had to strip it down to one enduring thought moving forward for ths show - it would be -

What do you believe?

What truths do you hold in your innermost heart?

And what actions are you taking out there in the world - to see those truths take form?


As I’ll be doing in many of the interviews to come - I asked Anne where she feels herself called to work and serve and mend right now - and in answer, as she often does, she presented us with a beautiful poem - which I hope you’ll listen through to the end to hear - it’s - as always - a full-fledged treat.  


She references the Mama Bear - & the Mama Bobcat - and which one She feels called to be at this place and time.


Preparing to share this chat with you - which you’ll find I’ve left mostly raw & unfiltered - come as you are and take what you need - I pulled a card from my favorite deck - the Animal Medicine Cards from Jamie Sams & David Carson - and it is these words I wanted to share with you….


”This can be a very difficult power totem for you to have….

It involved lessons on the use of power in leadership.

It is the ability to lead without insisting that others follow.

It is the understanding that all beings are potential leaders in their own ways.

The use and abuse of power in a postioin of influence are part of this medicine.


If she has come to you in dreams… it is a time to stand on your convictions and lead yourself where you heart takes you.  

Others may choose to follow, and the lessons will multiply.  

The pitfalls are many, but the rewards are great.”


It is with this spirit in mind, that I am pleased and tickled and honored to present to you - this - our maiden voyage of MEND Season 3.  

Thank you for sharing the journey with us.  

As always, if you resonate with what we’re sharing here and owuld like to let us know, leave us a comment or rating in iTunes.  It boosts our visibility and lets others know.


If you have thoughts or dreams or ideas or living breathing examples of people out there in the world - doing marvelous things - drop us a line and hip us to them!  You can reach us @ mendpodcast@gmail.com


And keep showing up.

Keep listening.

Keep speaking

Keep roaring, moving & doing the work that is needed in this world.


We are so happy you are here.  

MEND Season 2 - Episode 44

Season Finale & Wrap-Up with Amy & Anne

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It was a season begun with tea.

Sitting down to enjoy the art of conversation and contemplating what it might be like to move inside a world where we begin to value one another, this earth, beauty, thoughts, feelings, creative expression & simple self-determination - over the stingy value of a paycheck?

What would it look like to live inside a world that values it's people above it’s property?

That values it’s heart above it’s hierarchical standing in the larger world?

That values Nature above the supposed resources which it can provide us?

What would it look like to inhabit, move into, and begin to imagine a world like that?

Can we make it?

Can we find it?

Can we begin to converse & thereby imagine it into being?

These were some of the questions we set out to explore on this past season of MEND.

And so, we sat down - once more - teacups in hand - to reflect back on the conversations we’ve had.

To see what we’ve learned - how we’ve shifted - and how we can continue to move toward a future that is altogether different than the past - the present we now know.

What would it look like for two ordinary, inexpert people to begin to live differently - to uplift and inspire others to do so as well?

What if we believed these imperfect hearts and hands held some piece of the great MENDING that is needed in the world right now?

What if you belived it too?

What if we all jumped on board and rode that train to it’s completion?

Where would it lead?

Join us as we sit with these - and a few other questions - besides.

Here’s to the cups of tea we’ve shared inside this space.

And the conversations - visions - and movements - they’ve inspired - along the way

Cheers.

MEND Season 2 - Episode 43

Spiritual Capital

with Carolyn Baker

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Everyday we are faced with the evidence of global collapse…ecosystems around the world are dying or shifting rapidly, the number of people in the world far outnumbers what the earth can support, extreme weather is becoming a regular occurrence, ice caps are melting faster than previously feared, animal and plant species are dying off daily and we humans are becoming more insistent on our technologies, our machines, our tearing away at the flesh of the earth.  

Many of us feel the pain and anguish of this deeply and often ask ourselves,

How are we to cope?

Where do we pull our resources and our energy and take a stand?

What is our work in these times?

The grief so often can be overwhelming.

There is, however, a light in the dark night of our collective soul.

Carolyn Baker is a former psychotherapist and prolific author on the subjects of resiliency, spirituality, activism and how we as humans find our way in the murky and terrifying waters of global collapse.  Through the avenues of webinars, podcasts live workshops, books, articles, one-on-one life coaching and more, she assists people in “preparing for the dire consequences of the collapse of industrial civilization and abrupt climate change.” Her long list of books, along with links to articles, programs, speaking events, upcoming classes and information on the work that she does, can be found on her website carolynbaker.net

Carolyn observes that every person walking around today is traumatized and overwhelmed by the catastrophes, the destruction, the impending doom of our world.  But she urges us to allow that grief of this to be the power of our activism.  We may not be able to avert the affects of climate change or destruction by nuclear war, but we can do our shadow work, deepen our connections to each other and to the earth…we can, and should, be of service, build bridges of humanity, create and cultivate joy in our lives…and open up to the divine… this is what we are called to do.   

MEND Season 2 - Episode 42

The Culture that We Create..

with Anne & Amy

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First, let's define our terms.  

(With a little assistance from our pal, Wikipedia.) 

Culture.  

As in...

..."the social behavior and norms found in human societies"

As in...

..."the set of customs, traditions, and values of a society or community, such as an ethnic group or nation"...

As in...

..."the set of knowledge acquired over time"...

As in...

..."the development of a philosophical soul, ... (or) the highest possible ideal for human development"...

As in...

..."all the ways in which human beings overcome their original barbarism, and through artifice, become fully human."

As in...

..."to inhabit a place sufficiently intensive to cultivate it—to be responsible for it, to respond to it, to attend to it caringly"..

As in, something We create.  Inhabit.  Something we must be constantly tending, examining. sifting through and excavating what is useful, what is good, what is worth keeping and what is now ready to leave behind.  

This week, we sit down and ponder what is happening right now inside this country and the dominant culture there.  We look at our responses.  And examine it all through the rich and multi-faceted lens of our earlier conversation with Lyla June Johnston - poet, activist, scholar, and proud conduit of LOVE.  

What is an appropriate response to injustice?

How do we react when we feel the anger rising just beneath our skin, but in our hearts we wish to conduit peace, and lasting transformation?

How do we respond to the braided truths that we carry?  Do we abscond with the pieces of our selves and our past which we can no longer stomach?  Which we can no longer abide?  Or do we willingly and bravely turn towards them, confront them and gently start to shift the way the tide is turning?  

Apologies, in advance for the sound recording herein.  As usual, we had some kerfuffles with technology and ended up just sharing this conversation as is - A phone call between friends.  Two women, shooting from the hip, and speaking from the heart.  Grappling with the questions.  Somehow attempting to live our way - with you - into an Answer.  

Enjoy.  

MEND Season 2 - Episode 41

Cultural Capital

with Lyla June

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Welcome to another episode of MEND.

As I sit here, recording these words, we’re just coming off a week of watching the daily news unfold around the horrendous proceedings around the border.  

Photographs and stories of children being ripped from their mother’s breast.

Taken, after an arduous journey from their own, war-torn countries, seeking a better life here - being told that their young child is being taken for a bath and then, instead, placed inside a cage or shuffled into the foster system somewhere.  

We are horrified and outraged at what is happening inside this country at this moment - and yet.

And yet.

We are reminded that this is nothing new.

That this is a country that was founded upon slavery.

Upon the systematic genocide and oppression of native peoples.

And while - to our privileged gaze - these atrocities seem like a great departure from our stated values of “justice and liberty for all”, to native people and people of color - they have known that this supposed liberty has only existed for a ruling and privileged few - and usually come at great cost to many.

For this episode, we are greatly honored to welcome Lyla June.

Lyla June is a poet, musician, human ecologist, public speaker and community organizer of Diné (Navajo), Tsétsêhéstâhese (tee-say-say-es-ta-hees) (Cheyenne) and European lineages. Her dynamic, multi-genre performance and speech style has invigorated and inspired audiences across the globe towards personal, collective and ecological healing. Her messages focus on Indigenous rights, supporting youth, inter-cultural healing, historical trauma and traditional land stewardship practices. She blends her undergraduate studies in human ecology at Stanford University, her graduate work in Native American Pedagogy at University of New Mexico, and the indigenous worldview she grew up with to inform her perspectives and solutions. Her internationally acclaimed performances and speeches are conveyed through the medium of prayer, hip-hop, poetry, acoustic music and speech. Her personal goal is to grow closer to Creator by learning how to love deeper.

We sat down to speak Culture - and the capital of culture-making, taking, and appropriation with Lyla.

As someone who can speak firsthand to the long-ranging effects of discrimination, oppression, cruelty and genocide… we were blown away by the way in which this amazing woman continued to steer the conversation back toward the themes of Love, Forgiveness, collective healing & Restorative Justice.

At a moment in time, where we may be feeling numbed by the sheer volume of abhorrent news coming at us.

At a moment where we may be feeling collectively overwhelmed and overtaken by feelings of rage or hatred, Lyla June issues forth a clarion call.

To not get stuck inside the hatred.

To not dwell inside the wound.

To not let ourselves go numb.

But rather, to rally ourselves and what capital and currency we carry - in song, prayer, ceremony, or protest - and to walk deeper into this fray.

Armed with our songs.

Armed with our love.

Armed with our vision and deep, abiding wish for a world that looks altogether different than the one we now currently inhabit.

We are honored to share this talk with you today.

The words and story of a woman who had every right to dwell inside the pain and inherited anguish of a colonized and brutalized people.

But who has chosen to live her life as a means of glorious, powerful & heartfelt protest.

May her words and vision inspire you.

And help us to move together toward a culture and a world that may exist only now as a dream or a song.

 

Thanks, as always, for being here.

 

MEND Season 2 - Episode 40

Intellectual (Thread) with Anne & Amy

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“A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write”

~Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf first shared this sentiment back in 1928, just as women were coming into ever-more visibility and gradual power in all areas of public life.  Since then, we've been searching for that mythic "room of our own".  The magic space that would make it possible for us to do work that we love, express ourselves, create & to leverage our unique talents and abilities for a living (or dare we even hope thriving?!) wage, to boot.  

In our first season, we looked to the origins of cannabis culture and the similar sentiment embedded there.  Move up to the hills.  Throw some plants in the ground.  Build your own schools. Grow your own food.  Create your own currency.  Your own (counter) culture.  We have also seen how that culture has been gradually (and almost wholly) taken over by the values of the dominant culture.  

In this, our follow-up chat to our talk with the lovely Sandy Connery & Jennifer Barcelos of Namastream & Soulful MBA - we tackle the space of the Internet as one for people's and particularly women's voices and empowerment.  

As more and more people flock to the virtual spaces to create their messaging, their own platform, and to create a form of livelihood - what are the dangers and pitfalls that we face?  Can we step into the digital space and keep our values, our attention & our cultural (or, better yet,  counter-cultural) values intact?  Or are we destined to a similar fate as the back-to-the-landers faced?  In striving to promote our own values and our own vision inside the unruly and noisy spaces of the inter webs... how do we stay sovereign?  stolid?  Sane?  

Has technology, indeed, created this hallowed Room of our Own?  

And, if so.. how are we to navigate and move about this space?

Thoughts on that plus some tools and resources we've unearthed to help us navigate this space.

We hope you enjoy.  

MEND Season 2 - Episode 39

Intellectual Capital with Sandy Connery & Jennifer Barcelos

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In an effort to retain balance and a multi-sided conversation…especially after our episode on Experiential Capital and our seemingly harsh criticism of the screen and what lies behind it….we step into the tech world to speak with two women who have created their careers in the tech industry.  

Jennifer is an attorney, a change-maker, a mother and an entrepreneur. 

Sandy is also a mother and previsouly spent two decades in footwear and gait analysis. 

Together they have created Namastream, a software for wellness professionals, and also co-host The Soulful MBA podcast.

Our conversation delves into the world of the internet, social media and online learning…is there soul to be found there?  Is there a way to use this space for good?  How do we, especially as women, step into this male dominated realm and create or find our strengths and power, while keeping our integrity and our heart.

These women present us with the very convincing suggestion that technology is a pathway for women to share their teaching, one that gives them an opportunity to access their power,but also offer advice on how to not get consumed by the dominant voice.

We talk the 9-5 work schedule and why to throw it out the window,

How to teach our children about learning on the internet,

How to value the work that we as women bring to the community,

And ultimately how to run a tech company and still have time in the day to hunt for morel mushrooms…

More about these insightful women and the work that they do can be found at Namastream.com, there you can learn about the software they have created, read their blogs, and listen to episodes of their podcast, The Soulful MBA.  

These women have shown us that despite the many negative aspects one can argue that exist with the Internet, there are also many ways to use the space wisely, and with soul.  

Enjoy.

MEND Season 2 - Episode 38

Experiential Thread with Amy & Anne

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Welcome back to another micro-episode.

This week, we sit down to unpack some of the ideas we unearthed with Waldorf Educator, Jeff Lough.  Things like - How do we drop into a richer experience of this Life?  What enlivens the day-to-day?  How can we take the teachings and applications of this philosophy and apply to them to our own lives? 

Along the way, we talk Experiential vs. Intellectual Knowing, bring in some of our favorite books & resources once more & also send out the call for this coming June 1st - where we start our own little version of the Minimalist Game! (Which you can read more about here.)  

For our version - starting June 1st - we want to encourage each of you to start getting rid of at least one item a day.  For 30 days.  (If you've got more to release, by all means!  Please do!) Ultimately, though, this is not about living with less but rather, living with More.  Living with richer experiences, richer relationships, richer bodies, minds, lives, bank accounts, even.  What happens when we make the emphasis less about acquiring & maintaining our things & shift our focus to upgrading, enjoying & truly dropping into the felt experience of this Life?  

We can't wait to see.  

To find out more about the challenge, plus to contribute your ideas for a pithy hashtag for this game, drop on over and follow us on Instagram.  

MEND Season 2 - Episode 37

Experiential Capital with Waldorf Educator, Jeff Lough

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"Train up a child the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it."  

~Proverbs 22:6

These were the words often bandied about in my (Amy's) childhood.  Used in that moment to speak to a certain type of religious education.  But what if we took this idea into a larger framework?  Expanded the context and the meaning?

What does it mean to educate a child as an evolutionary and still-incarnating being?

What does it look like to take the long-haul aproach - to not rush into books or standardized tests or memorized facts and figures - but to first prioritize the development of the soul - of an inherent sense of reverence, play & wonder - to build a spirited “F-you” into the curriculum of a budding adolescent because we VALUE their want and need to revolt - and have built it into the way we educate them?

And more - what would it look like to translate these ideas - beyond the classroom, beyond the realm of the scholastic, the world of childhood - and to work to educate, emancipate and elucidate humanity as a whole?

Join us as we take this hour to speak to local School Psychologist, Educator, Advisor, Administrator & ardent Advocate - Jeff Lough - about the undergirding philosophies surrounding Waldorf Education, a method devised by Rudolf Steiner in Europe during the late 1800's.  

When we first embarked upon this conversation with Jeff, we expected to find ourselves engaging in a talk around Intellectual Capital, but soon found ourselves knee-deep in the...

Experiential.

Spiritual.

Anthroposophical (don’t worry - you’ll hear that one again)

Material

And so much more.

And while we geek out a bit, admittedly, on this particular methodology and philosophy - 

I want to urge you to keep a broad and open perspective.

To listen for ways that these ideas filter into your own experience.

Your own Philosophy of Life.

And into what it means to empower and educate oursleves - at every step of the way.

What experience do we wish to have inside this Life?

And how do the ideas, methodologies, principles and patterns we subscribe to - help us to step up and claim the fullness available to us?

And what are we actively doing - to step into the world we wish to inhabit?

May the questions put forth here - help shed some light - as you move down your own path.

May they re-orient you back toward your own true north.  And help us all, collectively - reclaim a better way.  

MEND Season 2 - Episode 36

THREAD: Picking it up (and Throwing It Down..)

Ideas to Reduce our Waste, & Live more Fully with Less

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This week, Anne & I got together to have yet another talk - inspired by last week's interview with Wasteland Rebel, Shia Su - to break down the different ways we can reduce our footprint, our waste & live lives more fully invested in Each Other.  In the actual Lived Experience of LIVING - rather than in the acquisition of Stuff.  

We throw out some books, some ideas and some practical suggestions on how we all can start transitioning into this simpler, yet richer way of being.  

As always, we try to keep these micro-episodes short & sweet - so that you can pick up what you need and get to work applying these ideas to your life.  Like, Now.  

We hope you enjoy.

 

MEND Season 2 - Episode 35

Material Capital with Shia Su  

“What is the use of a house if you haven't got a tolerable planet to put it on?” 
― Henry David ThoreauFamiliar Letters

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“Don’t start where it is difficult”.  These  words of wisdom come from Shia Su, a woman well-versed in the zero-waste movement – a name she admits can be a bit misleading.  Shia offers numerous tools and life hacks for cutting down on your waste and consumerism, actions that anyone with an inkling of willingness can start to implement into their life today, one step at a time.  These can be found on her website and blog at wastelandrebel.com. She also has a new book that just came out called “Zero Waste – Simple Lie Hacks to Drastically Reduce Your Trash”.

This is what Shia urges – to start where it is easy, to take one piece of the puzzle and fit it into your daily life until it becomes a habit.  She emphasizes that it is not about the over zealous, tackle-it-all-at-once, total life altering changes – these are not sustainable and very rarely successful.  It is about the slow, intentional steps that you can nestle into your every day.

Shia now lives in Germany, but has traveled and lived in a variety of other places. She shares with us some interesting insights into how various cultures approach the issues of consumerism and waste, if at all.  In this episode she also talks about the importance of access, who you surround yourself with and the ways to be successful and forgiving of yourself while on the path to zero-waste.

What’s your first step going to be?  If you feel inspired please share it with us on Instagram or FB or send us an email, share it with a friend, with a stranger sitting next to you on the bus or in line at the grocery store…let’s share the ways we are reducing our waste and our consumerism…let’s join the zero waste movement together…one step at a time.

MEND Season 2 - Episode 34

Community Currency with Fhyre Phoenix

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If you've been following the progression of this season, you know that we've been following up these longer interviews with shorter, bite-size "Thread" episodes, where we sit down and unpack some resources on how all of us can take action in these areas - both within our individual lives, and in the communities of which we play a part. 

We’re doing things a little differently with this "micro"-episode.

Well.  First off.  

It’s not micro.  Not mini. Not even a little bit.  

For this episode we chose to dip back into our local community to seek advice and  counsel from a man who has made working with Capital - both paper money - but also social, experiential, cultural currency, as well - his Main Focus for most of his LIFE.  

Fhyre Phoenix is the creator of the Community Currency project.

If you don’t know that is - don’t worry.

Stick around and we’ll let him eloquently explain it for you.

When you have an expert living down the street from you, you don’t dilly-dally in your own small pool - you go the Fountaiin.  The Wellspring itself.

So, although this episode is full-length, we know the time will be well worth your while & you’ll get a lot out of this talk.  

We sure did.

We could say more - About how inspiring this conversation was.

About the wisdom that this man and valuable community member has un-earthed in simply re-arranging his own relationship to livelihood and money.

Or about the surprising connection to Passion, Poetry, & even Plumbing that runs through this work.

But we’ll let you find all that out for yourself.

Believe me - if you truly desire to begin to un-hook from a life that feels less-than, a job you hate, and begin to arrange your world in such a way that you feel empowered, excited, and deeply connected to your fellow man… this is an episode you won't want to miss.

Enjoy.

MEND Season 2 - Episode 33

Financial Capital with Bari Tessler

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"Money is like love; it kills slowly and painfully the one who withholds it, and enlivens the other who turns it on his fellow man."

~Kahlil Gibran

This week we delved into a realm that was, admittedly, uncomfortable at first, and seemed perhaps counterpoint to the intention of this season.  It was, however, written into the framework that we have chosen to follow, so we forged ahead into the realm of Financial Capital. The resulting talk we had was far more inspiring and cohesive with our motivations that we would have thought even possible.  Bari Tessler, is a Financial Therapist, a Mamaprenuer and the founder of the Art of Money, book and year-long program described is “Financial Therapy for your Soul”.  

A large part of Bari’s work is helping people understand how money connects to our bodies and our emotions.  For her there is a direct connection between Financial Literacy and Emotional Intelligence. 

We spoke about our relationship to money…as women, as products of our educational and cultural system, as member in a partnership, and as mothers….and the importance of understanding this relationship.  She offers us a glimpse into the work she does with others by offering some advice and gems of wisdom when dealing with the ebbs and flows of our financial story.  She even manages to bring in a bit of Zen Buddhism and discusses how we can work through our own Money Koans.  

This is a money talk like you have probably never had.  So pour a cup of tea, grab a pen and paper for notes…and enjoy.  

MEND Season 2 - Episode 32

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At the Table, with Anne & Amy

This week, we sat down at our virtual table once more, inside this micro-episode - to hash out some of the themes and ideas presented in our talk last week with Marcie Goldman.

We looked at some of the habits we've already begun to integrate into our own nourishment routines (one more good argument for choosing your friends and cohorts wisely - the right ones could literally add Vibrancy & Health into your world!).  

Plus offer up some ideas, rituals, books & organizations you can look into in order to steep yourself further in the language of Living Capital.  

Oh yes.  

And we sing to you, as well.  

So be sure to stick around.  

Proust.  

MEND Season 2 - Episode 31

Living Capital with Marcie Goldman

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Welcome back.

Today, we move into the topic of Living Capital.  In the traditional landscape of Permatculture, from where we’re taking a page this season…  this form of vital currency is often defined as our local Ecology.

The land, soil, air, water, animals, plants - i.e. the very stuff that sustains LIFE.

Another way to look at Living Capital, and the way we’ve chosen to cozy up to this topic is through the very intimate ecology of the BODY.  How we choose to feed and sustain and, as you’ll hear again and again throughout this conversation - NOURISH - ourselves, our families and the skin we’re in.

Toward that end, we sat down this week with Marcie Goldman.

Marcie is a nutritionist who rallies against the current culture of fad diets and the idea that stringent dietary restricitons will somehow lead to long-lasting health.

This is a woman who wants us to FEED ourselves.

On every level.

Inviting MORE food to the table, to our gut biomes & returning to a way of  - here it is again - Nourishing ourselves - that honors the wisdom of our bodies, our earth, and our ancestry.

We loved sitting down with Marcie, where we dipped into some unexpected territory around dieting, childhood eating disorders, & toxic beliefs and patterns around food (that we often get from seemingly “healthy” sources).  

Ultimately, over the course of our conversation, we circle round automatically to the reality that truly nourishing ourselves - and re-connecting to our inherent appetites and vitality - in the end re-connects us to the health of our own ecosystem.  Re-connects us back to each other, the living culture of which we are a part, and the earth itself.

You can find out more about Marcie at her website at marciegoldman.com

While you’re there be sure to sign up for her meal plan, which includes a whole array of nourishing food and herbal remedies to add into your life.

We loved sitting down and talking food and Living capital with this wise and well-fed woman.

We know you will too.

MEND Season 2 - Episode 30

“Teaism is a cult founded on the adoration of the beautiful among the sordid facts of everyday existence. It inculcates purity and harmony, the mystery of mutual charity, the romanticism of the social order. It is essentially a worship of the Imperfect, as it is a tender attempt to accomplish something possible in this impossible thing we know as life.”
― Kakuzō OkakuraThe Book of Tea

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Welcome back to another micro-episode with Anne & Amy. 

Here, we sit down to talk about the ideas, possibilities & avenues for Thought & Action that got sparked inside our last conversation with Guisepi Spadafora, of the lovely Free Tea Bus.  

Ways to take things from the realm of Inspiration and move it into Perspiration.  Actualized.  Embodied.  LIVED.

So we sat - Anne & I - at our respective homes, with our respective cups of tea - and shared tools, ideas & resources on how We - She.  I.  You.  US. - can do the work of creating a wealth of Social Capital inside our world.  

Or rather, how we can create containers for non-monetary exchange wherein everyone involved leaves feeling nourished, tended & cared for.  We've got some ideas of our own (a very finite list, at best).  But we'd love to hear from you!!!  Take a minute to drop us a line @ mendpodcast@gmail.com and share your own ideas and thoughts!!!  

And make sure to check out the short list of resources and links in the show notes below.  

Cheers.

MEND Season 2 - Episode 29

A Simple cup of Tea with Guisepi Spadafora

"...There is no problem on Earth that can't be ameliorated by a hot bath and a cup of tea.” 
― Jasper Fforde

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Imagine walking down a crowded busy street, your eyes buried in your cell phone and the unsettling news of the day.  Scrolling through FB posts, belaboring one obstinate opinion over another.

Your thoughts percolating with lists of To-Dos.

People pass you, bumping shoulders without making eye contact.

When you hear the whistle of a tea kettle…

You look up to see the warm wooden interior of a white mini-bus and a sign that reads, FREE TEA

Inside is the thing you most need right now, something you haven’t had all day, or maybe even all week:  

Genuine human interaction, absent of monetary incentives.

A place to sit with others you’ve never met and make connections you never considered.  A man named Guisepi pouring tea for whomever enters, a man who knows RELATIONSHIPS to be of the highest value and speaks on the importance and necessity of a relationship-based economy.  Your feet, moved by a desire so innate you can’t name it, carry you to the threshold.

You enter.

Welcome to Edna Lu and the Free Tea Party.