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It truly appears spring has arrived! I have just returned from a nourishing retreat at Plum Village in France where the namesake blossoms fluttered like butterflies in the warm breeze. It is the hermitage of my teacher, Venerable Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh (currently in Thailand), and the visible energy of this humble poet, monk and activist who dedicated a lifetime to transformational thinking and peace is everywhere. Truly a paradise on Earth, and a reminder that joy is possible, even in the midst of chaos and confusion.
Now it gives me particular joy, on behalf of Nancy Roof and the Kosmos team, to share the results of our 2017 Seed Grant initiative. Two grants were awarded. Congratulations to Great Lakes Commons for an experimental ‘art and currency’ project that explores our collective values about water; and to Southeast by Southeast—a refugee center in Philadelphia where displaced children will have an opportunity to express their hopes and dreams through animations they help to create. Five extraordinary Projects of Promise were also selected. Please read all about them and help us support their actions in the months ahead.
We have also begun the Spring Into Action Campaign at our Kosmos Community page. Action, guided by love and positive intention is the keynote for Kosmos this season. The new print edition of Kosmos Journal, exploring this theme, will soon be available. Please subscribe to the print or digital version. Also, consider forming a Power of Three group in your community so you can take action together with your friends to improve conditions for a better future.
In the USA, we have had so little rest this winter. Worries about our political situation and concerns for the environment have kept many of us on edge. Broadcast and social media often just add fuel to the fire. But as the weather here warms, and flowers reappear, it is helpful to reflect on the inevitable cycles of life, seasons, empires and epochs. You do not need to bear the weight of the world, or your nation. Please take care of yourself, your family and your community by being peaceful, stable and happy.
It’s good to be home and writing to you on my birthday! Like the spring season, we too can always begin anew. The trees, the spring moon, and young children remind us to turn off our TVs and computers, take a walk instead, and connect with what is real and true.
Rhonda Fabian, Digital Editor, Kosmos
Please direct all comments and inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kosmos is pleased to award a 2017 Seed Grant to Great Lakes Commons (GLC). The Great Lakes Commons works for the protection of the second largest freshwater source in the world through education, interventions, and water protection. GLC is a diverse network of people and organizations working to protect the bioregional area of the Great Lakes and establish it as a commons– a resource that people collectively share, inherit, protect, and enjoy. With this grant, the GLC will explore an experimental econo-art intervention to rethink currency, value, and the impact money has on the world around us.
Congratulations to Southeast by Southeast, recipient of a 2017 Kosmos Seed Grant. “We’re Listening,” is a project that gives refugee children, age 8-14, a voice using the creative process of short, animated video storytelling. This project is a collaboration between SExSE and Ellen Reynolds, a documentary cinematographer and educator passionate about promoting children’s wellness and supporting their point of view.
Kosmos has selected five Applicants as 2017 Projects of Promise. Although these projects do not receive cash grants, Kosmos looks forward to offering our editorial support and allyship in the year ahead. We can’t wait to see these projects blossom! We hope you will get involved too!
By Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee and Hilary Hart | © 2017 by The Golden Sufi Center | Advance Copy | publication date: May 1, 2017
Walk as if you are kissing the Earth with your feet. – Thich Nhat Hanh
I have always loved to walk early in the morning, to sense the Earth at the beginning of a day, to feel Her pulse, Her beauty and magic, before thoughts and demands clutter my day. Waking early, I have a hot cup of tea, meditate in silence, and then, as soon as the first light comes, I walk down the hill to the road beside the wetlands where I live. Sometimes the frost is sparkling around me, sometimes the water is clouded with fog, an egret appearing white against the reeds. This is another time of silent meditation, walking, breathing, feeling the Earth.
Kosmos caught up with Alnoor Ladha, co-founder of /The Rules, a 2016 Seed Grant Recipient. Mr. Ladha filled us in on what last year’s seed grant helped accomplish at Activist Ashram.
By Kavita Byrd, for Kosmos Online
To live in truth in this age of post-truth — to disentangle the lies and deceptions in which it threatens to envelop us — we need to draw on deeper, higher truths, and the wisdom, inspiration and power with which they infuse us. We are citizens not only of our own skin, our clan, our neighborhood or our nation, but of the entire universe, past, present, and future. This is the ultimate inalienable truth, that nothing is alien to us. The more we plug into this truth, the more power flows through us. We act from love – the power that interconnects the universe – and heals the blindness that divides us, binds the wounds of illusion.
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