How do we respond with compassion?  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ 

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Dear Friends,

On a recent blog post, Bonnie elaborated on Rumi's field "beyond wrong-doing and right-doing" as a Third Force: "The Third Force teaches that a conflict contains both an affirming and denying factor -- a yes and a no. Our typical response is to struggle with that duality, and try to get the other side to change. The Third Force, however, is a reconciling factor that offers something greater, by first identifying the affirming and denying factors and then surrendering to the tension of opposites. We stop looking for answers in the limits of our knowing and trust a vastness that is both infinite and intimate."

In service to that third force, a few upcoming events ...

  • This Thursday, on the heels of our disrupting education panel, we will be in dialogue with one of the foremost public intellectuals on civil rights, john powell, alongside a systems luminary and author of nine books, Margaret Wheatley. RSVP for Finding Ground in Groundless Times.

  • It's summer. As a start, that means, we're revving up for the buzz of youthful energy. Next week, seven amazing teens are kicking off our summer internship. If you read their illuminating wisdom and enthusiasm, you'd see why all the mentors are wondering, :) "Who's the intern and who's the mentor?" Also, next week, Audrey and crew are hosting over 200 change-makers across 25 countries in our first-ever Laddership Pod! Even just reading their inspirations can leave you with goosebumps.

  • Bowing. The only time that our heart is higher than our hands and head is when we bow. In the late 70s, Rev. Heng Sure's remarkable bowing pilgrimage across 800 miles inspired many. This weekend, two monks are offering a virtual one-hour 'three steps and a bow' practice. Join this Saturday.

On a recent call that Preeta called "truly transportive and transformative", Rabbi Ariel Burger shared a beautiful story from the Jewish oral tradition. Fortunately, it's now transcribed. :) Here's how it starts: "One day, Baal Shem Tov saddled up his wagon and horses. His driver, Alexi, had a peculiar way of traveling -- he would sit facing backwards and let the horses go wherever they want to go. That Sabbath eve, they traveled several hours until they stopped at a poor man's house." Full story here. #ThirdForce

To close, here’s a prayer by Larry Yang that Bradley recently shared at our Awakin Circle: "May I be loving, open, and aware in this moment; If I cannot be loving, open, and aware in this moment, may I be kind; If I cannot be kind, may I be nonjudgmental; If I cannot be nonjudgmental, may I not cause harm; If I cannot not cause harm, may I cause the least harm."

In the spirit of service,

(on behalf of ServiceSpace)

P.S. Over the last couple weeks, KarunaVirus team has been asking: how does compassion respond to racism? In Philadelphia, two friends bring a basketball hoop to protests, inviting officers and protesters and anyone to play. In California, one woman organizes a different kind of protest, where hundreds turned out to clean the streets. In Tennessee, a black man shares his fear of walking alone and being seen as a threat. Next day, 75 neighbors show up to walk with him. In Minnesota, a school asks for 80 bags of groceries for riot-hit families. Next day, 25,000 bags fill its lawns. In Chicago, a store owner loses everything to looters. In two weeks, 6,400 people help cover his costs. In New York, an 18-year-old pulls an all-nighter cleaning up protest damage. When word got out, strangers gifted him a car and scholarship. As cities and sports revise policies, reporters ask: what does it really take to bring lasting change?


ServiceSpace is an incubator of volunteer-run projects that nurtures a culture of generosity. What started as a small experiment in 1999 has rippled into myriad expressions of service in dozens of countries around the globe. For more, watch a video on our unique design principles.