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Would MLK Buy A Ram Truck?

It’s a beautiful paradox that what we really need to open our minds is to use points of tension and conflict to see beyond our own often limited belief systems and ideally envision a new possibility. This may have been the lofty, spiritual goal of the marketing department at Fiat Chrysler when they created this 2018 Superbowl ad,  but I seriously doubt it.  My guess is that they were looking to demonstrate social responsibility and to promote the Ram brand. The 1:07 minute ad features a voice over of Martin Luther King’s “Drum Major Instinct” speech, which MLK delivered precisely 50…

This is what love, and life, look like…

I was surprised by the quiet beauty of Georgetown, Colorado, a small, historic mountain town close to I-70, the main route to the state’s ski resorts. A new blanket of snow had just fallen transforming the charming hamlet into a winter wonderland–the stuff of storybooks. To ensure that we were sufficiently wowed by the scenic beauty,  a friendly cowboy reminded us that “it didn’t look like this yesterday. There was no snow until this morning.” So I boarded the Colorado version of the Polar Express, sat down on a lavish cushion, and embarked on Georgetown’s Loop Railroad for Santa’s North…

Teilhard’s Wisdom For Living An Inspired Life

“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.” This is among the most beloved and widely circulated quotations from the Jesuit scholar, mystic, and philosopher Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. Most of us have it backwards! We think we have to surrender our humanity to be spiritual, and so we begin the lifelong quest to satiate our inner soul-sickness while the solution is breathtakingly simple—live your day-to-day life well. “We must add one stitch, no matter how small it be, to the magnificent tapestry of life;” Well, I’m trying to do that,…

Are you an intellectual?

If you answered “no,” I ask you to reconsider. At his commencement address to newly-graduated doctoral students at the University of Florida, National Book Award Winner and History Professor Ibram X Kendi asks us to look at intelligence differently. If you have a desire to know, if you’re open-minded, if you have a tremendous capacity to change your mind, if you are self-reflective and self-critical, and above all, if you’re always willing to face reality, then you’re an intellectual, according to Kendi. At his December 16, 2016 address to the University of Florida’s newly-minted Ph.Ds., Kendi challenges traditional notions of…

How To Navigate The Newsphere

We long for connection, a hunger for awareness of the other. We are evolving through our connections with each other, which are becoming more complex, powerful and sophisticated. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin defined this as the noosphere, the glue that binds us together in a cosmic sense. It is an integral consciousness—the understanding that the human is the “axis and arrow of evolution.” This web of connections is a source of often untapped energy. It is how we grow and change both individually and collectively. Technology helps us grow this global network of complex connections in dynamic and powerful ways.…

Trust In The Slow Work Of God

– Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J. (1881-1955) We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay We should like to skip the intermediate stages. We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new. And yet it is the law of all progress that it is made by passing through some stages of instability and that it may take a very long time. And so I think it is with you. your ideas mature gradually – let them grow, let them shape themselves, without undue haste. Don’t try to force them on, as…

People See Through A Racial Lens: Young People Today Are Engaged and Fearless Says ‘60s Activist and SDS Pioneer Tom Hayden

By Christine M. Tracy I interviewed Tom Hayden in March of 2015 when he returned to his home state of Michigan and his alma mater, The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the First Teach-In To End The Vietnam War. Hayden died Sunday at the age of 76. “In the ‘60s, there was a common reaction to local abuses,” says Tom Hayden, a founder of the SDS and principal author of their political manifesto, the Port Huron Statement. “There was an outbreak of sit-ins at lunch counters that escalated from one town to multiple…

Ride The Wave Of Change Advises International Affairs Expert Robin Wright

Seasoned war reporter rejects the ‘mean world syndrome’  You’ve probably seen Robin Wright on the PBS Newshour, Charlie Rose, or CBS’s Face The Nation. She’s spent most of her life reporting on wars and conflicts: her column, ISIS On The Run, was in the October 17, 2016 New Yorker.   The world-traveling reporter recently returned to her hometown of Ann Arbor, Michigan, where she was warmly welcomed by a large audience at her alma mater, the University of Michigan. A true Michigander,  Wright paid homage to ‘the maize and the blue’ and told tales from her career-launching job at at the Michigan…

A Basket Out Of Time

“It doesn’t get any better than this,” I texted Brendan minutes before the start of the 2016 NCAA Finals in Houston. “It’s weird. It’s surreal.” Brendan’s answer was a perfect description of the collective energy in the arena that night and the special magic that brought him to that precise moment in time. The basketball angels worked overtime to turn a life-long dream to go to the NCAA Finals into something transcendent;  Brendan was not only witnessing basketball history but realizing a personal dream. Underneath all the plans was a deep desire to see our team, Villanova, win the tournament.…