THE NEXT 10
Mindfulness is a way of being and thinking that grows out of paying attention, on purpose and without judgment, to what is happening in the present moment. When we are mindful, we deliberately slow down to notice what is happening inside us (our thoughts, feelings, and body sensations), and what is happening outside us, in our environment. The intention is to see things as they are, rather than as they used to be or as we wish they could be. The good news is that the development of mindfulness helps us notice our emotions without being triggered by them. It moves us from living on automatic pilot to pausing and paying deliberate attention to what is happening in the now.
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In our land of plenty, it is hard to believe that hunger exists in every county in the United States. 49 million Americans are food insecure. What this really means is that that one in six people in our country do not have access to adequate nutrition that our bodies and minds need to be active and alert. Ask yourself: how can someone effectively learn, work or care for his or her family without this basic human need fulfilled?
"Everything but the present moment is a concept." These phrases, spoken by elders and young change agents from around the world, paint a picture of the magic that happened at the 2013 Ethical Leadership Assembly (ELA) that I attended as a newly named Dalai Lama Fellow. The ELA is an annual convening and week-long learning community for the Dalai Lama Fellows, a global network of young social innovators working at the intersections of peace, justice, ecology.
More than one billion people in the world still live on less than $1.25 a day, and according to the IMF, it's estimated that as much as 27 percent of GDP in developing counties is lost each year due to women being denied entry into the global economy. That's why empowering women is not only the right thing to do, it's also the smart thing.
Few people discussing the recent riots and protests in Baltimore have bothered to question why young people would feel angry enough to destroy their own neighborhood. Some have suggested the unrest can be blamed largely on the "breakdown" of the family structure in poor neighborhoods, particularly in poor communities of color, where fathers are frequently absent.
More than ever before, journalists who work in dangerous zones understand the importance of technology to improve safety and reduce risk. Orellana, an investigative reporter for La Prensa, Honduras, works in San Pedro Sula, which has the highest murder rate in the world, with 186 murders per 100,000 people. Unwilling to investigate stories with only phone interviews, she enters the turf of drug cartels to interview victims of violence.