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Reveal the power of LOVE

All Season Festivities & religious festivals around the world seem to be about gratitude, generosity, sharing, giving and forgiving, in one way or the other. They all point towards the great power of Love which we all have in common and underline the great attraction we all feel to experience it. Through challenges in life, we may have taken refuge in personal fortresses and become difficult to reach, but an experience of pure love can penetrate the thickest barriers. Pure love comes from within without having any strings attached, free from any desire for recognition. It passes through walls like water and melts the hardest stone. It expresses itself through small gestures, a smile, a hand, a simple gift, quiet and refined, and yet it can move mountains. If you are worried about gifts, closed shops and restrictions to travel this Christmas Season, why not turn it around and do it differently. Have the courage to break the tradition, set aside imagined expectations and do something purely from your heart. You could simply bake something sweet, like the cookies below, and wrap them nicely together with a card. On the cards write loving words of appreciation, the beautiful thoughts of respect and appreciation which you have thought many times, but never really expressed. It does not need to be a long message or eloquent at all, it only needs to be true. The fact that you mean it will make all the difference. It may be the most valuable gift they ever received! 

Wishing you A Beautiful Loving Holiday Season
and a Loving New Year 2021!

SoH Small Group Dialogues on Love in Leadership and Governance

L A U N C H E D !

Maureen Goodman moderated our first ‘Dialogue on Love in Leadership and Governance’ last week with 7 invited leaders representing Sustainability, Education, Indigenous Wisdom, Science, Wellbeing, Politics, Peace and Business.  The dialogue created a safe, nurturing space; a space to be oneself and enjoy a deeper human or even soul to soul connection. The central question of the dialogue was: What is the meaning of love and wellbeing for ourselves and for the planet? And by putting love into practice, how can we, as leaders, collectively nurture this? With honesty and openness, we explored the roots of fear, the transformational power of love and generosity, the profound learning in trauma, humiliation, illness and loss and the reason for loving wellbeing.

More dialogues of this kind are being planned..

As part of exploring the theme of the Spirit of Humanity Forum 2021, ‘Towards a Loving World - Leadership & Governance for Wellbeing’, SoH is convening a number of Zoom-based Small Group Dialogues, which will provide a safe, loving and reflective space in which invited leaders can explore with each other love in leadership and governance; what is it in their experience that either leads to or prevents love being a power in politics, business, education and other areas of society?

As Prof Ursula King raised at a regional SoH Forum in Bristol, “We feel that our ideas of love have become weak. We need to understand love in a new way, or maybe an original way that has been lost.” Ursula said that “we have made love small, into something we only keep for friends and relatives, intimate connections. But the power of love is so much greater. We must nurture a different kind of love which can reach out in the world.”

We are inviting explorations, reflections, stories and experiences of the meaning and power of love from different perspectives to exemplify what love looks like when it builds bridges, overcomes significant challenges, makes us see with the eyes of another and creates trust and harmony among people.

Each group will have no more than five invited leaders and will be facilitated by members of the Spirit of Humanity team. The dialogues will be built on our three pillars - silence, listening and dialogue.

“If you can find a way of engaging with the person BEYOND the politics, then you can actually begin to make changes IN the politics that are more humanising and exemplify this idea of dealing with disturbed historic relationships and start creating better historic relationships. Even though you are in disagreement about things you can still have a respectful humane relationship and find ways to collaborate.” 

This is from the second dialogue in the SoH Forum's conversation series 'A Narrative of Love', with Lord Alderdice.

As Leader of the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland for more than 10 years, Lord Alderdice played a significant role in the negotiations of the 1998 Good Friday agreement. He then became the first speaker of the new Northern Ireland Assembly and the Chairman of the Liberal Democrat Party in the House of Lords at Westminster.       VIEW HERE   or  LISTEN HERE

'A Narrative of Love' is a series of conversations with thought leaders and spiritual teachers about their understanding of the significance of love in our personal and public lives. Dr Scherto Gill is leading this work In preparation for the 5th Spirit of Humanity Forum 2021. 

Companionship, beauty, nobleness and sharing
- Romantic Mountaineering

We asked Rodrigo Jordán to describe a personal experience of the power of love. This inspired him to describe what he calls 'Romantic Mountaineering'.

The real summit picture is when everyone is back down

Rodrigo Jordán is the Founder and President of Vertical S.A and is one of Chile’s most accomplished mountaineers. He is widely recognized in Latin America for his work in Leadership and Innovation and he serves as Professor of Leadership in the MBA program at the PUC School of Business. 

Since the 80s, mountaineering has been divided into two styles that have quite different views on what it means to climb mountains.

One of them is characterised by being highly competitive and accordingly considers risk a factor that determines the level of demand. Higher risk, higher demand.

Those who belong to this line of logic have opted not to use support when reaching summits. A clear example of this is Alex Honnold, the American climber that has made free solo climbing his personal stamp. In 2017, Alex climbed a 900-metre rock wall in Yosemite National Park known as El Capitán. His feat was registered in the movie Free Solo, which won an Academy Award for the best documentary feature in 2019. It is incredible. The level of risk that Honnold took is astounding. There was no room for error because, point blank, it would imply death– his death. Along that same line is the mountaineers who reach the highest peaks without the use of oxygen, who do it solo or who take unexplored routes; everything that means exacerbating the levels of risk.

On the other hand, we have commercial mountaineering, which dates back to the origins of mountaineering in Europe in the mid-1800s. During that time, the English inhabitants –of a country without mountains– travelled to what they called their backyard: The Alps. They hired Swiss or French guides to help them climb to the top of the mountains. The closest thing to this style is what still lives in the Himalayas through the work of the Sherpas.

Claudio Lucero, the father of Chilean mountaineering, describes a third style that runs parallel to the others: romantic mountaineering.

The mountaineers who grew under Claudio’s wing identified themselves with this new style that prioritises the values of companionship, beauty, nobleness, and sharing. In accordance with these values, Claudio explains that the true summit picture is not the one that is taken up at the top, but the one that is taken back at Base Camp, once everyone has returned safely.

Following this perspective, the importance is not in reaching the summit but in what you live as you attempt to conquer it. Claudio heavily emphasises how you climb, who you do it with, and the lessons you acquire throughout the expedition. It is a valid outlook for any aspect of life because it prioritises companionship, respect, and listening to one another. In that sense, romantic mountaineering is not individual nor competitive. The experience of climbing a mountain together is in its DNA. It is not about getting to the top first but making sure we all get there.  READ MORE

Fridays for Silence 

Welcome to join our weekly spiritual practice of simply connecting in real-time online without agendas, plans and work to do. We just sit in silence in the presence of each other, connecting heart-to-heart for 15 minutes listening to a few words of reflection in the beginning.  Join us HERE

A Moment of Silence
In ICELANDIC - Meditation & Inspiration for the weekend, 15 minutes every Saturday in collaboration with Brahma Kumaris Iceland.
If you speak Icelandic: Welcome to Join us HERE

The Joy of Caring

A new book by Miriam Subirana, one of the organisers of Spirit pf Humanity Forum.

This year invited us to take care of ourselves and of others. When we flourish, we express the best of ourselves. Caring, embracing suffering, opening up with our creativity we generate life-giving moments. When we are connected to our positive core, with what gives us life we co-create meaningful experiences. These are some of the ideas and practices that I share my new book, The Joy of Caring, that will be launched on the 29th of January. It will help you to inquire into the essential questions, the ones that have prevailed since antiquity: Who am I really? How can I get in contact with the real self that lies underneath my superficial behaviour? How can I become myself? And to find ways towards acceptance, compassion and contemplation. I wish that, during the next 2021, all of us can make each other flourish.  READ MORE

Strong gingerbread cookies

with a hint of lemon  simple vegan recipe

Crispy on the surface and a little chewy in the middle.
The lemon balances the hefty dose of ginger nicely. 

  • 200 grams of vegetable margarine
  • 2 dl (200ml) sugar
  • 3 dl (300ml) wheat flour
  • 3 dl (300ml) oatmeal
  • 2 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
  • Rind from 1 organic lemon
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate

Let the margarine get a little warm in the room.
Set the oven at 150 degrees Celsius = 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
Using the smallest blades on your grater grate the yellow surface of the skin of 1 a thoroughly washed, ripe lemon. 
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and work together into a dough that can be rolled.
Roll into balls the size of a walnut. Makes 25-30.
Place them on a baking dish lined with parchment paper and flatten a little. 
Bake in the middle of the oven for about 17-20 minutes.
Allow the cookies to cool thoroughly before moving them from the dish.

Spirit of Humanity Forum

www.sohforum.org

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

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