Newsletter October 2021

Is all of humanity traumatised? It is a thought that comes to mind very clearly when following the recent, fascinating conversations led by Dr Gabor Maté and experts from many different fields in a week-long event organised by Science & Nonduality (SAND) under the heading The Wisdom of Trauma. It seems like everything which has been 'swept under the carpet' is now surfacing big time. We must face our past and respond. It all points towards an urge for transformation. So, it is no surprise that the topic of trauma comes to the centre of our attention in a big way too. We learn that our prisons hold the most traumatised members of our society, that illness is rooted in traumatic stress, that there is generational trauma and that there is something called collective trauma. We find trauma everywhere. However, there is a great promise in understanding this. Because if we start to see the pain that leads to addiction, violence and illness, instead of blaming, punishing and dehumanising each other, we can look into each other's hearts and notice we have the same longing for acceptance and to be loved. We can start to do our inner work, understand ourselves and walk the path of healing. We must understand ourselves and the pain that dissociated us from our true nature, have compassion and support each other in recovering our innate goodness.

  • Dehumanising people does not help anyone. It only makes things worse
  • We must learn to humanise those who harm others to liberate them from these roles.
  • For transformation, we need to be trauma-informed
  • It is crucial to come to know one's authentic self
  • Focus on healing and solutions
  • We become what we practice

"Trauma is not what happened to you; it is what happened inside you."
Gabor Maté's concise explanation WATCH

Two great dialogues related to trauma and healing from the A Narrative of Love series hosted by Dr Scherto Gill:
Thomas Hübl WATCH       Dr Joy DeGruy WATCH

A wonderful opportunity

Participate in a workshop led by Four Arrows who for decades have been engaged in bringing awareness to the world of indigenous peoples worldview

We continue to explore our current theme, 'Towards a Loving World, Leadership and Governance for Well-Being'. We are delighted and very honoured to be able to offer a new chance to participate in workshops held at the 5th SoH Forum in June, as well as to new additions. First in line is Four Arrows:

Worldview Reflection as a True Dichotomy and Complementary Thinking Task in Behalf of Human Survival

Welcome to join this workshop
with Wahinkpe Topa (Four Arrows), aka Don Trent Jacobs

Four Arrows, aka Don Trent Jacobs, PhD, Ed.D., is the author of numerous books, peer-reviewed articles and chapters on applications of Indigenous Worldview as a proven solution to our existential world problems. Former Director of Education at Oglala, Lakota College and currently a professor of education for Change at Fielding Graduate University, his academic work, spiritual life and social/ecological justice activism have received international recognition, including a book on his work by Dr Michael Fisher entitled Fearless Engagement of Four Arrows.

Wednesday 20th October at 15.00-16.30 GMT

The workshop is a gift from Four Arrows to Spirit of Humanity Forum, which we gratefully accept and enable us to offer it for free as per our ethos

Register HERE

Coming book

Restoring the Kinship Worldview

Indigenous Voices Introduce 28 Precepts for Rebalancing Life on Planet Earth
By Wahinkpe Topa (Four Arrows) and Darcia Narvaez

"Humans have a particular ecological niche, a role as the custodial species of this earth. We must return our species to this niche within the next decade, or perish. This book,Restoring the Kinship Worldview, is a perfect place to start - the foundation is good relations, making kin both human and non-human - and here we have story from a gathering of some of the finest Indigenous thinkers in the world. Four Arrows and Darcia Narvaez have a particular way of bringing the right people together for such purposes."– Tyson Yunkaporta, author of Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can Save the World


Did you know that Four Arrows is also great pianist?


The Recovery of Love

A series of essays by David Cadman, writer, quaker and sometime professor

Last year, I published a book called Love and the Divine Feminine, which explored how it was that we have come to be where we are, who we are, faced with climate breakdown and social division. At the end I asked some questions about what was meant by Love and the Feminine, and whether any gender-based discourse was any longer helpful.

In The Recovery of Love I try and answer these questions, or at least explore them, seeking a new and radical Language of Love as a challenge to all that is holding us back from becoming who we want to be in a troubled world, how we might find a place of love and compassion and a gathering together to care for each other and the Earth. The discussion papers that make up The Recovery of Love are being published from now until the end of the year. They can be read one at a time, and I hope that, together, they offer another way of being, another way to find our place here on Mother Earth. I would be interested to know what you think about all of this and what you are doing to find your own way.


By Wendy Ellyatt, Founder and Chief Executive, Flourish Project

The education of even a very small child, therefore, does not aim at preparing him for school, but for life.
—Maria Montessori (1948)

Sustainable development has the ultimate potential of offering an holistic, transdisciplinary and transformative perspective that can support agencies in the integration of early childhood and family services. A resonance between the concerns of the SDGs and children’s wellbeing is immediately apparent as soon as they are brought together. This should not surprise us too much as this emphasis on the child, the natural environment, and the local and global concerns for humanity can be seen in many of the pioneers of early childhood services, and perhaps especially in the work and writings of Friedrich Frobel, Robert Owen, and Maria Montessori.
—John Siraj-Blatchford AND Lynnette Brock, 1987

We are currently living in strange and fascinating times, where change is happening at a rate perhaps never before experienced in human history. This, of course, brings with it huge challenges, but it also presents us with huge possibilities related to our shared ability to choose the future that we all really want, rather than the one that might be predictable.

One of the key aspects of this phase is a raised human awareness of how we are all interconnected and how the things that go in one part of the world directly influence other parts. We are also becoming more aware of how our own values, mindsets and internal states have been profoundly influenced by the environments that we have uniquely experienced, and how these states then impact on others. According to the 2019 World Peace Index2, the global economic impact of violence was $14.1 trillion PPP in 2018, equivalent to 11.2 per cent of global GDP or $1,853 per person. There are deep social structures at play that are constantly shaping the emergent patterns of the future, currently with three major divides - spiritual, social and ecological.

To become more aware, we therefore need to explore both the inner and outer aspects of human societies i.e.

Understanding the world from ‘Inside-out’ – how our own backgrounds, experiences, values, thoughts and emotions influence our behaviour and activities

And ‘outside-in’ – how the external pressures and expectations of the systems that we live within (i.e., families, communities, political and religious systems and cultures) influence our thoughts, emotions, values and behaviours.

Compassionate Leadership

New book by Michael West, Professor of Work and Organisational Psychology

Those who work in health and social care give inspiring support for the health, happiness and well-being of all – communities, societies and nations. Yet their work-places often harm their own health and well-being, affecting care quality, motivation, patient satisfaction and corroding cultures of compassion.

In these pages, an evidence-based approach to transforming the leadership and cultures of health and social care teams and organisations is described. Practical, powerful and compelling, it describes a strategy based on the core human value of compassion, showing that by sustaining that value in health and social care, we can cultivate wisdom, humanity, presence and high-quality in health and care services. Supplemented with practical resources, case examples and searching questions for discussion, it offers a simple, radical and powerfully effective strategy for change.

It is a call for leaders to nurture compassion within themselves and across health and social care institutions, to support healthier and happier institutions and communities. It challenges leaders at every level to have the courage and authenticity to embody compassion in their leadership now and for the long-term future.


Calm and Confident - universal leadership qualities

The wisdom of dogs

Some basic needs apply to all living things. Dog expert Cesar Millan emphasises that peace and security are the keys to developing a good relationship with all animals. He says: "When I enter people's homes (to get to know a new dog), I always behave very quietly, very calmly because calm builds trust. Then I ask the dog to stay away because it creates respect. I prioritise trust and respect. After that, I express affection. People often interpret this as if I am not very loving because most of my clients like to greet dogs by going directly into their intimate room and expressing affection, but it does not create trust and respect.

Animals read our energy
Cesar says that animals react to the energy we send out and that the energy never lies. Peace and security signal stability and stability is essential energy in the animal world. Dogs like to follow a calm and stable leader. We have the same need. The same applies to us humans. We expect our leaders to be calm and secure. If a dramatic situation occurs, we are more likely to follow the one who remains calm, even if it is not the formal leader.


The value of CALM

When leaders learn from their people

An inspiring story from everyday life

On the last Monday of August, a colleague and I, went for a weeks ‘resident holiday’ with three of the residents at the home for people with reduced physical and mental functioning, where we work. It was my first experience of a ‘resident holiday’, and I was excited. We drove our minibus to a rented cottage in the countryside. The sun was shining, and the joy of anticipation was great among the three residents. The house contained a swimming pool, air hockey, whirlpool and five rooms. It was located in an open landscape, overlooking fields.

My colleague and I had discussed beforehand what we should see, do, experience, and achieve. We felt that we must give the residents a lot of experiences and that we must be able to show our employer that we had used our time well. So, we had a plan with many options.

On the first day, we unpacked and established ourselves in the house. The residents enjoyed sitting on the terrace with coffee and good food. We talked with them about the plan for the next day. We explained that we were to go on a trip to the nearby fishing village and have lunch at the harbour.

However, the next day as soon as we arrived at the harbour, one of the residents said:
– Now, let’s go back to the cottage...


Spiritual Practice: Play at Work

Inspiration to put into practice from the Fetzer Institute

It’s easy to forget how impactful the daily, ordinary moments of our lives can be. Sensei Koshin Paley Ellison, Zen teacher, psychotherapist, and president of the New York Zen Center for Contemplative Care shares what a door person in his building said that moved and reminded him of the impact our most ordinary activities have on others.


Listening to understand more

Listening is one of the three pillars of the SoH Forum. Here is a great article from our partner Heartfulness on this important subject.

We can listen in a range of ways. We can listen in attentive silence, offering our alert presence, communicating acceptance, respect or care, without words. Or we might need to listen for factual information – for example in a work meeting – and then we can check back with the speaker if what we have picked up is accurate.

Perspective taking is another way to listen. Paying attention and acknowledging someone’s perspective or opinion, particularly when it is very different from our own, requires us to be centered and to let go of any urge to persuade them they are wrong! If our intention is connection not correction, we first listen for their way of seeing things and then we may reflect back to them our understanding of their perspective. “So, your view is that vaccination should be compulsory for everyone, is that right?” Remember, you don’t need to agree with their perspective, but when someone feels accurately heard, not immediately argued with, not judged, they are much more likely to be open to hearing your perspective also.


Towards a Loving World

Leadership and governance for well-being

Reflections from our community

"The western world is transitioning from a 'leader as ruler' model to a 'leader as servant' where the role of the leader is not to be served by the people, but rather to serve the people’s needs. This model of leadership is similar to indigenous models of governance that could be described as familial and based on love and relationships, rather than socio-hierarchical and based on rule or law. The modern, industrial world has much to learn from indigenous familial approaches to governance where every member of the family, or society, is cared for, not just those with wealth or power."
- Corey Lewis

"Leadership is a form of love. We lead because we care, not just about those we lead, but also about the world in which we lead. Is my work adding to the positive energy and wellbeing of everyone? Am I being a force for good and for love in my relationships and my leadership? These principles are crucial in healing our divisions and our planet and its place in the universe."
- Rose Rudnitski

"We have to believe that a loving world acts as a ripple effect. I may be just a tiny grain, but I can still cause a ripple. And as many other grains come together, our ripples and our effect can achieve wonders... just as it is said: the butterfly that flaps its wings in China can lead to a storm in America."
- Donia Keith

"We need change. This is clear. What a better way to change than focusing on Love. We are all connected and need to learn how to live and appreciate one another as humans and animals and plants. We need to shift or our existence here on this earth is at risk."
- Susie Rolander

"My job is CEO of a media company in Belgium, NGroup. Being the media, we have a huge responsibility in the way in which our listeners perceive the world. The great challenge of Humanity - and each of us - is to allow everyone to live with dignity within the limits of the planet. To invent a way of living, collectively, above the social floor (care, food, a roof, a job, a decent income ... for all), and below the ecological ceiling (carbon neutrality, good use of resources, preservation of biodiversity). No country in the world is doing that today. This is our challenge as human beings, companies, organisations, nations and media. As media we support that vision. We are not perfect but we act for that vision. With us, when hosts and journalists switch on their microphone, they don’t speak to one million people, one hundred thousand, one thousand or one hundred people. They each speak to only one person, one person that they love. And when you speak to someone you love, you don’t speak in the same way and you don’t use the same words or the same tone of voice. We have decided that through our voices, our words and our songs to sent out positive waves to our listeners. As a medium, we are incredibly lucky to have a resource without limits : the airwaves. We decided to make it a weapon of “mass construction”.
- Marc Vossen

"We are all connected."
- Eugene Kocherga

"When we lead with love, we are open to receiving greatness."
- Lisa Corbit

"Power has been seen as the opposite of love. Power and love can inhabit the same space in the body and the interspace between bodies. Leadership for well-being is the leadership of loving power and powerful love. This type of power has been in nature and in the human being, sometimes silent, sometimes dormant, sometimes powerfully present. It is been present in animals and in the way they behave to protect and nurture their species in dynamic equilibrium between species. Loving power and powerful love is the source of a new spirit of leadership."
- Joao Noronha

"It’s a great theme, I would add at the end “wellbeing for all relatives - humans, animals, plant life, winged nation, grandmother earth.”
- Sina Ikikcu Win Ironcloudtwodogs

"When we start to reconnect with the ground underneath our feet, our beautiful planet earth, we can start to FEEL again - ourselves and others - and leave the numbness and fear that has lead us to the current situation which are trying to change so desperately."
- Miha Gombos

"We are moving towards those targets. Slowly but continuosly and strongly. Let's keep on testing our best, as facilitators of the advance and growth of the process!"
- Josune Moneo

"For this cause we all came into the world, tom bear witness to the Truth, the Light that is Love, which reveals our connection."
- Bruce Robertson

"'Toward a Loving World' is a personal decision to walk step by step, meet others with open inviting curiosity and co-operation for a common world in harmony with nature, cosmos and with each other."
- Astrid Ståhlberg

"With a little sharing, compassion, a well-balanced life, and the need to take a step back to gain wisdom about the big questions of our lives, we can create real desires and give many the opportunity to find the balance to contribute to the change we need and become the leaders of tomorrow. To do this, we must not have well but be well."
- Jean Francois de Lavison

"Today's ways aren't working."
- Laurel Colless

"I have a quest of a world free from corruption, and that if we can get 50 righteous people we can change the world."
- Zizipho Ke-tu-rah Dhlamini

"The theme, towards a loving world, leadership and governance for well-being, is not just a title; rather it promises to be a guide and a roadmap for the flourishing of all humanity."
- Ann Dinan

"After the unprecedented time we have gone through, there is much more need to for a loving world for people to heal from the past and start a fresh."
- Deepak Salwan

"We rise up as one collective"- Guðbjörg Eggertsdóttir
"Here on Mother Earth, I believe that our shared purpose as a Human Tribe is to become more aware and more mindful with growing loving kindness towards all that is Sacred in the Web of Life. We weave the Dream together as active participants upholding the Law of One when we understand that all is interconnected. Mitákuye Oyás’iŋ ('All Are Related' in the Lakota language)."
- Yvonne Germaine Dufault

"The world urgently need to reset toward a more loving and human-centrist approach. The world is screaming for more authenticity and purpose. We need companies that are more responsible, less individualistic and we really need to leverage community in order to generate long term value and optimise the way we interact, work and live. I trust our future should be built on collective intelligence. Nobody can make better plans by themselves than a group of people can make together. By pooling all of the knowledge and attitudes together, we always come up with better solutions and approaches. So let’s get every brain in the game."
- Catherine Rey

"I hope this will be the decade where spirituality is put into the equation as the way of being towards a loving world. Most people already have some kind of spiritual practice for their well-being. I hope to see a time where leaders acknowledge the importance of those practices in a work context, allowing for the separation of personal vs work to be over."
- Maria Bras

"It becomes more relevant if it is sustained with clear actions and measurements of the impact of these actions, as well as a clear review of all educational systems. I am interested in understanding how this can be applied pragmatically and how it can become a reinforced given for any kind of future social development?"
- Kelsey Greene

Join us for Friday's for Silence

Building a subtle network of pure thoughts

Every Friday at 11.00am GMT - 15 minutes

Join us in this simple spiritual practice
Empower yourself and help shift human consciousness
Being introvert together

Mikes are automatically turned off.
We see each other in small windows on the screen, are first guided by a few words into silence and then just sit in each others presence.
A few words at the end indicate that the time is over.




Spirit of Humanity Forum

Secretary: Lotta Arbman (Sweden)
lotta.arbman (at)
+46 729 110 485