I'm joining Service Space because ... there's a vibration of love, compassion and selfless service that feeds me more than anything else can, and inspires me to take another step of my own towards others
A good day to me is when ...
My hero in life is ...everyone who holds a door open, smiles to a stranger, cares for those around them, pays the toll to the car behind them, shares food and stories, opens their heart to the immense wonder in each and every moment
My favorite book is ...
One thing I'm grateful for is ...
Oct 31, 2018, 4 comments, 9 smiles Bhaskar's mother, Shakkuben, passed away peacefully this morning, after several years of struggle with Parkinsons. Both her sons were by her side. You might remember Shakkuben as the woman behind 'The Trashed Pencils'. Thank you, Shakkuben, for your inspiration and love.
Dec 15, 2016, 16 smiles Last night's Awakin circle was absolutely magical!!!!! It was intimate with the pressure of the holidays and, of course, the exact right people were there. One person spoke of her choice to live, and to truly live each moment. Another reflected on how easy it is to say that and a profound commitment to maintain it. Another shared the impact of her neighbor's death on how she's shifted her living (very similar death as described in the reading). Another discussed how his decision to live until 120 has lessened the pressure to get everything done in parallel. The highlight came when one person celebrated her one-year anniversary "almost to the hour" of being sober. Wow! What a joy to be sharing in that celebration with her. What an honor that she picked our Awakin circle as the place she wished to celebrate. In honor of her anniversary, after metta and before dinner, we did a happy dance and gave her her first ever group hug!!!! :-) A photo of a few of us... ;-)
Nov 22, 2016, 3 smiles Here's a TEDx talk about Domino Deeds, how one domino can impact another which impacts another with "a commitment to care." Jim started painting landscapes and gives them to people inviting them to pay that act forward. Domino Deeds has also raised money for cancer patients, kids in India, etc. The kicker: Jim is a lifer in an Ohio prison and most of the donations he collects come from other lifers, convicted murderers. His motto: Our environment is what we make it. Enjoy!
Jul 14, 2016, 1 comments, 8 smiles Yesterday was our first "normal" Awakin in a while as, over the past few months, we've been blessed with the in-person visit of Viren bhai, Ashish and Mahesh and the virtual visit of Nimo, Leah, etc. This circle offered powerful gems with half new attendees and half "regulars." A few snippets: the inner source of power versus the external impression of power, the value of observing our unstill mind as authentically as our still mind, presence as a source of power, surrender as a source of power, orchestrating a large group of volunteers with no real authority over them, etc. Plus, we received the gift of food from a number of participants, including one who moved to San Diego after attending the Berkeley circle. :-) Two weeks ago, I headed to Donovan prison for my usual Sunday volunteering, two days after my cousin was murdered. After sharing the story, one of ... Read Full Story
Mar 06, 2016, 7 comments, 22 smiles I spent today with 45 inmates at San Diego's maximum security prison, on the last day of a four-day retreat for these men. They did not know we - free folks - would be there. When they returned from lunch, there we were, all standing singing and welcoming them back into the chapel for the closing ceremony of their retreat. Several of them stopped dead in their tracks. Why would 40ish people take time from their lives to visit them, the forgotten outcasts in this maximum-security prison? They continuously hear how evil they are, what a cost to society they are, how no one wants them back on the streets or working in their businesses or living near them, how their life is not worth much of anything. During open mic, one inmate shared how he had prepared to take his own life and this retreat ... Read Full Story
Jan 09, 2016, 1 comments, 4 smiles One morning, we were asked to vacate the dining hall earlier than usual. I found myself walking to the entrance of the meditation hall just as the sun was preparing to make its appearance. The sun had risen billions of times over this spot. And suddenly, I realized the uniqueness of this moment. While there will continue to be myriad sunrises, never again was this spot going to experience the very first rays of 2016. It was the morning of Day 10. January 1st, 2016. In that majestic moment, I was overtaken with gratitude. Gratitude for the awe-inspiring beauty of the moment. For every moment that has brought me here and for every moment I am to live from this one forward. Gratitude was a strong theme for this 10-day. By being “alone,” particularly during this festive season, I was with everyone. I felt deep gratitude for my family that both ... Read Full Story
Nov 10, 2015, 12 smiles We recently learned of a family going through difficult times (thank Pancho!). Every member of the family has been assaulted recently. It's been a terrible time for the family, complicated by poverty and legal issues. Depite that, the kids are good students, which is amazing. On Sunday, a few of us met to film a clip for the "Planting Seeds" video and we prepared goodness to deliver to this family. We had homemade goodies, fruits, veggies, potted plants, as well as rainbow loop bracelets and drawings prepared by the kids of our gang. The bags were full of gifts of love and sharing. Despite the darkness after finishing the video - the family has been worried about opening the door to strangers after dark - a friend and I dropped off the bags to the family. It was this friend's first such kindness drop off. ... Read Full Story
Jun 02, 2012, 1 comments, 6 smiles When the Ekatva group landed at Nimo's house in LA, an unknown parrot landed on the shoulders of Sureshbhai (who plays Gandhi in the Ekatva show). Then, he moved to his head and for the next two days, he continued to stay around the Ekatva kids. When they went in for prayers, the parrot went in and sat on another coordinators shoulder and started chirping, as if to join in the prayers. The kids have named him "Bapu" (Gandhi's nickname).
May 12, 2012, 2 comments, 10 smiles It has been a blessing to tune into the bay-area Wednesday circle via live-stream every week, from San Diego. Last week, Pavi shared a great quote around Einstein's Is the Universe Friendly? inquiry -- and the whole poem (by Shell Shilverstein) is so inspiring that I thought I'd share it here: “I asked the Zebra, are you black with white stripes? Or white with black stripes? And the zebra asked me, Are you good with bad habits? Or are you bad with good habits? Are you noisy with quiet times? Or are you quiet with noisy times? Are you happy with some sad days? Or are you sad with some happy days? Are you neat with some sloppy ways? Or are you sloppy with some neat ways? And on and on and on and on and on and on he went. I’ll never ask a zebra about stripes...again.”
May 10, 2012, 3 smiles A friend's story: Miracles do happen - a New York taxi driver returned an envelope with $500 cash that I had lost on the subway. All it had on it was my address. He came to my apt, posted a note with his contact info, and returned the money when I called him. Amazing!