We need empathy to come back to life | Pre-registration for Earth Day events through Wed Apr 20


Hi everyone,

International Trauma Expert Dr. David Berceli wasn’t able to accept the invitation to speak at the 10th Annual Golden West College Peace Conference on Friday, April 22. Instead, he create a video. We felt it was a very important message about how the inner process facilitates outer paradigm shifts, so we have chosen to circulate it in advance of the conference rather than within it. You can view it here.

Since our defense mechanisms are designed to help us cope and feel less pain, we can be grateful that they work so well when we need them – and – sometimes their effectiveness works against us, especially when we get stuck in defensive patterns needlessly. In a defended state we lose the sense of being part of the whole, and too often harm our self and surroundings without perceiving the consequences of our actions. We lose sight that living life while numb isn’t really living life. Many of today’s problems can be attributed to this pervasive disconnect. It is really getting us into trouble.

When we have unplugged from our own inner state, we lose access to self-reflection and no longer experience our rhythmic, pulsating existence as part of the alive natural world we live within. We lose the perception of this earth as a self-regulating living organism that we are part of. We fail to experience that our planet cannot self-regulate well enough to compensate for how extensively we have interfered with its natural rhythm causing it to head toward a state of organismic chaos instead of life-supporting coherence. Within the disconnect, we lose some of the ability to step into someone else’s shoes, and that empathy, in a healthy state, has application regardless of species.

We need empathy to come back to life. We need empathy to reveal compassionate living. And we need each other to do what needs to be done in this life. We need to come together. There is too much at stake to ignore the crisis and the urgent need to change the paradigm for how we live life on this planet.

Please make time to join us for the Earth Day events listed below. I know you are busy, that is part of what is keeping us traumatized in this society. We are all too busy. We live with chronic overwhelm. Yet, this is an opportunity to participate in bringing about critical changes in this world. So, I am asking you to please make time to be there. It is important.

Online registration for both events ends Wednesday evening, April 20.


Also,
Nicole Jafari has generously offered her beautiful Anaheim Hills home for a Fundraiser Brunch and Silent Auction for Farm Sanctuary (with Gene Baur) on Sunday, April 24, 11am – 2pm. For complete details, send me an email: info @livingubuntu.org. I hope you will come join us that day also and offer your support to the remarkable work Farm Sanctuary is doing. Continue reading

Racing Extinction – tonight!


Hi everyone,

This is a friendly reminder that A Screening of Racing Extinction is tonight, Thursday, April 14 at 6:30p, in the Orange Coast College – Science Hall, Costa Mesa. Admission is free. Go to the web site to watch the trailer, find parking info, campus map, and to RSVP.

See you tonight,
Barbara English, LMFT, CBT, TRE® Certification Trainer
Co-founder and Executive Director, Living Ubuntu
livingubuntu.org
(949) 891-2005

[Ubuntu] n. Every human being truly becomes a human by means of relationships with other human beings

***

Tonight!

From the Academy Award Winning Filmmakers of The Cove…

A Screening of
RACING EXTINCTION

Scientists say the sixth mass extinction is taking place on our planet.
It’s also the first caused by a single species: Us.

April 14, 2016,  6:30pm – 9:30pm

FREE Admission

Orange Coast College — Science Hall
701 Fairview Rd, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Click here for more info and RSVP.

***
This free screening of Racing Extinction is a pre-conference event, in advance of the
Friday, April 22, 8:30am – 5pm
Golden West College 10th Annual Peace Conference.

Click here for 4/22 GWC conference details and registration.
***
Saturday, April 23: Earth Day at Soka University with Gene Baur: Eating in harmony with our values

Wisdom figures are hard to come by | Gene Baur at Soka April 23, 2016


Hi everyone,

There is a short list of people that I have personally met that have dramatically changed the way I see the world and the path I choose to walk in this life. One of those I speak of often is the international trauma expert, Dr. David Berceli. Back in 2004, it resonated deeply when I first heard him speak of trauma as our invitation to evolve as a species with its resolution supporting our growth toward wisdom.

When we do not feel safe, we contract, resulting in increased fear, competition, resentment, reactivity, and anger. When safety is sufficient to allow for trauma recovery and great self-reflection on life’s hardships, we do not go back to the way we used to be, we go forward, forever changed for the better by our experiences. In the best case scenario, our sense of empathy and compassion expand as part of a much bigger, broader worldview. We move from the tightly contracted limitations of a self-centered worldview of “me” into the species-preserving benevolence of pursuing the common good in a worldview of “we”.

In 2015, I had the extremely good fortune to meet yet one more of these rare individuals who have met with significant adversity, and come out on the other side with increased wisdom and compassion. That individual is Gene Baur, the Co-founder and President of Farm Sanctuary. Bearing witness to animal cruelty for three decades would cause many to get utterly stuck in cynicism and bitterness, yet, Gene has managed to remain inspirationally optimistic, while embodying groundedness. After 30 years, he carries an amazing amount of knowledge; beyond that, he carries his life experience with grace. His organization seeks “Compassion for All” and gently reminds us that animals are “Someone not Something”.

Wisdom figures are hard to come by in this world. For me, that fosters a profound sense of gratitude when I meet one. Continue reading

… a thousand ways to kneel and kiss the Earth. (April events)

Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.
There are a thousand ways to kneel and kiss the Earth.
– Rumi

Hi everyone,

April will be here soon. Did you know that April is Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month, Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month – and — Earth Month?

Have you ever thought about how incredibly inter-connected those issues are?

Please join us this April for three very important events. (Registration is strongly recommended, even for the free events.)

Thursday April 14 – Pre-conference event: A Screening of Racing Extinction (register here)
This film is remarkably well-done. Scientists say the sixth mass extinction is taking place on our planet. It’s also the first caused by a single species: Us. This free pre-conference event takes place at Orange Coast College the week before the Golden West College climate-themed peace conference noted below.

Friday April 22 – 10th Annual Golden West College Peace Conference (register here)
For only $25.00, this conference offers an entire day of incredibly well-informed, inspirational speakers taking on the tough topics, compassionately. The fee includes vegan breakfast and lunch. This zero-waste, climate-themed peace conference is not to be missed! Please consider contributing as a sponsor at the above link to help support free admission for the students.

Saturday April 23 – Earth Day at Soka University with Gene Baur (register here)
On the beautiful grounds of Soka University, Gene Baur will have the spotlight for an in depth talk on “Eating in Harmony with Our Values”. Celebrating their 30th year, Gene is the Co-founder and President of Farm Sanctuary, the largest farm sanctuary in North America.  The talk is free, but we hope you will stay for lunch afterward. Pre-order your $10.00 vegan, picnic lunch at the above link and gather with us on the lawn after his Black Box Theater talk is finished.

Plus – April 1 is the last day for the Early Registration Discount for:

Friday April 29 – Sunday May 1 – TRE® Module I Certification Training (register here) Continue reading

Living congruent with our values | Upcoming events

The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

Hi everyone,

As much as December offers a time to look back reflectively on the year that was, January brings a clean slate to begin again. It provides us with the opportunity to re-commit to the process of living congruent with our values and the life we genuinely aspire to live. Sometimes summoning our will isn’t enough because as homeostatic beings, we need transformation to come from a deeper place within us if it is to be lasting. Finding ways to re-inhabit our own body and surrounding ourselves with social support can be essential in re-aligning our life. Spending time in nature and with animals is another aspect. The sense of feeling that we belong to a greater whole can be fostered by the micro-experience of feeling well-connected to those who are nearby, regardless of species.

In 2016, Living Ubuntu will be increasing its emphasis on support for health, well-being and compassion – for us as individuals, and for the greater whole that extends far beyond humanity only. Continue reading

Distance doesn’t always make the heart grow fonder.


For much of our history as a species – and perhaps particularly in modern society – we have often seen ourselves as isolated beings, solo actors on a small stage with a few select fellow thespians.
Today we can actually track scientifically the neural dimensions of our narrow definition of self. When our resonance circuits are engaged, we can feel another’s feelings and create a cortical imprint that lets us understand what may be going on in the other’s mind – because it is like ours – and our mind and our brain turn on our mindsight mechanism. We uncap our inner lens and take a deep look into the face of the other to see the mind that rests beneath the visage. But if we cannot identify with someone else, those resonance circuits shut off. We see others as objects, as “them” rather than “us.” We literally do not activate the very circuits we need in order to see another person as having an internal mental life.
 – Daniel Siegel

Hi everyone,

Contrary to the popular notion, distance does not always make the heart grow fonder. Sometimes distance just makes it harder to relate. And the implications of that extend far beyond its relevance in romance. Distance has many meanings and contexts. It can be geographical, as in, physically ‘far away’, historical, as in, things that happened ‘long ago’, or circumstantial, as in, life experiences where ‘nothing like that has ever happened to me’.

Empathy is about being able to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes and caringly feel what it is like to be there. These factors of ‘distance’ make empathy more difficult. Unless we really ‘get it’, and can ‘relate’, it is hard to care very much, or feel compassionate. Continue reading

Remembering the Past toward Healing our Future: April 1 (Rwanda)

April 2014 Genocide Awareness and Prevention Month

Surviving is more than just staying alive; surviving is learning how to live again.
– Carl Wilkens

Remembering the Past toward Healing our Future

A free six-event commemorative film series featuring stories of survivors and their children

My Neighbor, My Killer (2011)

GENOCIDE: Rwanda
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Reception: 5p – 6p, Program: 6p – 8p

Soka University of America

Pauling 216 (reception in the adjacent plaza)
1 University Drive, Aliso Viejo, CA 92656
campus map
(See below for free PARKING details.)
Speakers:  Tomas Crowder-Taraborrelli, Michelle Hobby-Mears, Delly Nzella, Edith Umugiraneza, Kristi Wilson
RSVP
Space is limited.

Camp Darfur, a traveling, awareness-raising six-tent refugee camp exhibit, (one for each genocide being commemorated in April), will be on campus outside the dining hall in the Campus Green area beginning at noon.
Community booths from our partnering organizations will be set up at the reception. Continue reading