I'm joining Service Space because ... I'd like to connect with others who are loving, kind, giving, and inspirin.
A good day to me is when ... I remember to smile
My hero in life is ...Mother Earth
My favorite book is ...Seat of the Soul
One thing I'm grateful for is ... My Children
Jun 02, 2020, 3 comments, 9 smiles A beautiful reminder from Dr. Dzung X. Vo ... I wrote these lines on the night of May 29, 2020, as I was practicing awareness of the suffering of the world during these times. The basic practice of mindfulness is breathing. But what about when it’s difficult to breathe? What resources do we have to draw on? How can we hold the pain? How can we move towards healing the world, starting with ourselves? You may wish to practice reciting and then sitting and breathing with this poem for a few minutes as a guided meditation. i can't breathe said George Floyd the knee of four hundred years of racism on his neck i can't breathe said the woman with fear in her eyes her lungs attacked by coronavirus as she was put onto the ventilator i can't breathe said the nurse, exhausted after a long shift sweating under a hot surgical mask and foggy goggles i can't breathe said the young man poisoned by a toxic drug ... Read Full Story
Mar 21, 2020, 17 comments, 30 smiles This past Tuesday, 90 of us gathered online, in response to an invitation to collectively hold the question: How Does A Heart of Service Respond To These Times?: Coronavirus has uprooted the fabric of our lives. How does a heart of service respond to an unknown cause, how do we build resilience when we can't be physically together, and how do we amplify lotus in the mud? Uncertain times raise significant questions that can architect a new story for our future. Carbon emissions have dropped dramatically, but xenophobia is rising. Nursing homes are being evacuated, only to bring elders home to their families. Shopping malls are empty but family meals are on the rise. Awakening of kindness is pervasive, but the inequality of human suffering is evident. Borders are still present, but the boundaries of our shared humanity are getting blurry. Yes, undercurrents of fear are everywhere, but so are prayers. ... Read Full Story
Dec 09, 2019, 4 comments, 18 smiles Last weekend, Dustin and I had the beautiful experience of serving a two day silent meditation retreat at Banyan Grove. Our immediate inspiration was from just having sat our own three days of silent meditation at BG in October and generously served by Audrey. On the ride home from that weekend, our gratitude for the experience quickly turned into a conversation of “let’s pay this forward!” and the idea for this retreat was born. Although it rained hard from the start of the retreat, invisible protectors guided us all safely to and at Banyan Grove. Noble silence was no doubt, a treat for our mind and body--held from Saturday 6am until the closing circle on Sunday evening at 7pm. Many reflected on how the peaceful energy within and out was easily felt without the distraction of outside noise. We wrapped up the weekend with the 3-steps 1-bow practice, inspired by Rev. Hengsure's ... Read Full Story
Nov 14, 2019, 1 comments, 14 smiles What a joyous Awakin Teens Service Day over the weekend at Banyan Grove! On Sunday evening, a few families came together to prep the space and also circle up again since our last meeting in September. Simply coming together in the spirit of service led to powerful conversations and joy in wholesome presence. Right from the beginning, the teens got to work (after a game of basketball :)), picking apples from the trees, which Sandy and Tim's mom Jane magically turned into a delicious apple cobbler! Seema arrived and instantly super sweetly whipped up some vegan chai for everyone as well! After some icebreaker activities with our spirited "guest speakers" for the evening, Tim and Vishesh, we had dinner, and then the teens flowed into a young-people-only :) circle on "Stories of Success". Lena wrote afterwards that many questions that came up on this topic were "not easily answered either, but the input from ... Read Full Story
Jun 26, 2019, 2 comments, 11 smiles A little over 2 weeks ago, on a very nice and warm Sunday, my daughter, her friend, and I decided to go to the beach. It was also the day before their 8th grade graduation. Beaches were crowded that day, so it took us a while to find parking and eventually a tiny beach below a rocky cliff to spend our afternoon. Soon after setting down our things, the girls went into the water to play. I began spreading out my space on the beach, hoping to relax and meditate. But I quickly noticed the 2 couples to my left, caucasians with beer in their hands and tattoos on their arms, talking and laughing. I watched my mind as it judged them and began to feel annoyed. A series of other random negative thoughts about them followed. I was about to close my eyes and meditate on this....Then, this happened: About ... Read Full Story
Jun 08, 2019, 13 smiles As summer fills the air, dozen teens gathered this evening for our third Awakin Teens Circle! A few photos from the spirited time together ... And a touching note from a teen afterwards: "Thank you so much for the amazing evening. I had the most fun that I have ever had and it was very eye opening as well. I was just wondering if you can send some information about good volunteer opportunities! I would love to volunteer this week and next week before my trip! Thank you so much again :)" Thank you to yesterday's guest, Andy, and much gratitude for all the new seeds planted, and for all the shared presence!
Mar 21, 2019, 4 comments, 21 smiles [On Tuesday night, about fifteen of us came together to chop veggies for our local Awakin Circle. Well, except Sandy, who was busy making lemon cake. :) And last night, the whole community got to meet the remarkable wise elder that all of us had heard so much about. His gentle smile alone melted so many of us. He reminds me of the beauty I see and feel when I’m out alone in nature -- that ultimate unconditional, loving presence and equanimity. Of course, it’s not just his presence, but the stories he shared that allowed me to feel the depth of devotion-led-service! I will forever remember his formula of service = effort divided by ego. What a wise one ... one that you definitely don’t need a college degree to figure out :-) Thank you all for creating and holding the space for so many transformations. Jamie described it ... Read Full Story
Nov 01, 2018, 13 smiles I recently visited Japan, and was very excited to know about a localized Karma Kitchen experiment happening there -- Priceless Cafe at Kamakura's Sonbe Cafe. As the evening rolled on gift-economy gift-economy in Japanese, ServiceSpace appeared on the screen! Here's the food for the day ... Lots of smiles all around, including meeting old friends and friends of other volunteers. Going to various local events in my neighborhood, it's hard to imagine just how far the ripples of ServiceSpace reach. :) Thank you, all!
Aug 20, 2018, 4 comments, 23 smiles Ellie, interning with ServiceSpace this summer, :) recently visited her first Awakin Circle in Santa Clara and later felt inspired to shower the circle that I was going to later in Oakland (with Pancho!) with some treats. She went to the Farmers Market with me that morning, picked out some fruits, and volunteered to shower everyone with some sweets.
Aug 02, 2018, 5 comments, 20 smiles For the last 3 years I've been attending the local Awakin Circle. I can't tell how profound it has been for me. I had never meditated in my life before Awakin Circle, and I wouldn't even call myself as spiritual. But now, everything is different. I'm just deeply, deeply grateful for the circles, for the loving energy that seems to be created effortlessly each and every week, and for everyone to unconditionally hold space for people like me to 'wake up' and flourish. Although it's taken me a while to figure out some things, the anchoring affect of meditation is undeniable and the ongoing internal growth as a result has propelled me to let go of many attachments. On Monday, feel particularly inspired, I decided to do someone I've never done before -- host a circle on my own! My husband and kids were out, I got my parents to take care ... Read Full Story