Awesome Stories 223

This week Awesome Stories brings you compassion, edible classrooms, wisdom, community and sacred service.

Collective Wisdomlistening

In a related article, Alan Briskin talks about the five conditions that support the emergence of collective wisdom. I find them to be great tips for group processes of any kind. The five conditions are deep listening, suspend certainty, see holistically, hold space for group wisdom, and trust in the extraordinary. In fact, these five practices would be great tools for groups, relationships, businesses, classrooms and more. To more wisdom emerging through listening, respect and trust.

Learning Compassion

This article explores the idea of learning compassion as if in a four-year college program, progressing from freshman worries to senior year confidence in our ability to practice compassion. The article is a bit long, but filled with great tips, wisdom and stories about generosity and compassion. Like any skill, compassion takes practice, but as the author Nipun-bhai states, “the more we practice it, the deeper we are embedded in these bonds of generosity, these bonds of love. And it’s impossible to be generous and feel disconnected.”

Change Through Community

This article explores how change takes place. It rarely takes place one person at a time or from top-down planning and directives. Most personal change occurs as collections of new ideas emerge and disperse throughout a network. The power is in the connections or relationships. Change starts with one or more groups, emerging into networks and communities. The Berkana Institute explores how the power of community can effect lasting change.

Edible ClassroomsGreen Bronx Machine, Awesome Stories

I love how this teacher turned a passion into a project that transformed his class, school and community. Stephen Ritz, a teacher in the South Bronx, realized by growing things with his students they might be able to grow in other ways. Inspiration to grow things together led to reclaiming abandoned lots for gardens, then indoor edible walls. Gradually, he got students, teachers and community involved. The students learn about science, plants, growing, cooking and more, while gaining valuable skills that can lead to better work opportunities, and feed their community. Stephen is working to put plants in all NY classrooms as part of the Green Bronx Machine project.

Reverend Violet Little

I love Violet Little’s vision for churches. She wants to see churches be true sanctuaries; offering food, shelter and comfort to all, especially the homeless. She has been a champion for the homeless in her church called The Welcome Church. She brings hope, comfort and care to the people, operating without a fixed building in donated spaces. She won the 2013 Purpose Prize from for her inspired service. Thanks!

What is in your heart to give to the world?

Mine is to be a champion of the earth and the sacred spirit in all. May your week be full of love and inspiration!




25 thoughts on “Awesome Stories 223

  1. Thanks Brad! I particularly enjoyed the article on learning compassion. Right up my alley so to speak! I’m convinced most people aren’t even aware how they are lacking! Thanks my friend…your awesome stories are just that…AWESOME! And I wish a wonderful holiday weekend for you filled with lots of love and “compassion!” ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Four years of compassion college is an awesome idea. Imagine if it were a mandatory part of all schooling from Pre-k onward, oh what a different place our world would be 🙂

    Edible classrooms is also a great concept. I’ve got plant in my home, but of late have been trying my had at edibles ie veges as I aim to move to a more self – sustainable way of living.

    Great post! Thanks for sharing…

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  3. Thank you, Brad, for continuing to weave together the tapestry of awesomeness. You’ve created a wonderful collection of human beauty and potential here. As far as this week’s offering goes, I like Briskin No. 5: Trust the extraordinary.


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  4. Cooking is an art and activity that has the ability to bring out the creativity in anyone. And the added benefit is that you get to enjoy your delectable creations 😉 I love the approach that Stephen has taken to awaken that creativity in young minds while also educating them and performing a friendly deed to Mother Earth, thanks for sharing Brad!

    Liked by 1 person

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