I had the opportunity to be immersed in two remarkable community circles the past two weeks. A local group dedication by my spiritual association to the survivors in the Christchurch and Japan and a Oregon Community Mercy Corp benefit for Japan.
Within the safety of these two amazing circles, I was acutely aware how our culture often de-sensitizes us by the brutality of our politics, the exhausting pace , responsibilities and impossible goals that our northern hemisphere culture sets for us.
In times of great personal tragedy all of this is transcended by a sublime opportunity to open our feelings, reclaim our connections to our fellow human beings , as one human family . A stage we don’t often perform on. But where we have the chance to allow our highest personal selves , the very best in us to emerge and demonstrate what the human race is really capable of.
It is clear and almost palatable from discussions with loved ones living through the destruction and loss in Christchurch and those representing the Japanese community in Portland a profound and overwhelming gratitude knowing they are loved, cared for and nurtured by the power of the human spirit.
$250,000 was raised during the past two weeks to continue the heroic work of Mercy Corp and their partner organization in Japan Peace Winds . Please go to www.oregonjapanrelieffund.com and contribute.
After a wonderful intra-red sauna treatment Anisha Clinic on Hawthorne , I ventured over to an evening event at a Portland City Visioning outreach site at a school in N. Portland. The City of Portland Vision projects objective is to create a 25 year plan. An enormous 6yr role out inviting tens of thousands of citizens, profits and nonprofits for input on nine areas concerning what they want for their city. The input is completed and the dilemma facing the facilitators of this marathon effort is how to bring it all together.
One essential question and modern dilemma facing many organizations and particularly for this city is, how are you going to create partnership with absolutely huge swell of young people flooding into this city? The ones who will truly going to inherit and be the lightning rods for this 25 year plan?
The cities interesting answers to this question are baby steps = the city and mayors office are inviting the youth to organize the community events. Last nites was a marde gras style with a salsa band and healthy food . High school students translate the initiatives into the 40 or so languages being used in the schools systems here. And potentially they are considering adding young members to a citizens advisory commission to the planning commission that has an indirect voice to the city counselors.
After three years of these community events + partnership with a wide swath of profit and non profit entities , the city has focused on four key areas; Equity( equality of opportunity) Healthy Communities, Education and Employment and Job Opportunities. These absolutely brilliant spotlight focus areas that hold intriguing relationships and an interesting blend weaving an organic chemistry of common values between them offering opportunity reaching out to the millennial generation in the Portland.
Most interestingly there is hope if this City who invites openness , transparency and unity can be successful engaging the future making a huge space to incorporate the core values of this millennial generation that revolve around family, diversity and making a difference in this world.