Category Archives: Blog

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The Circle of Courage – Native American Model of Education

“Anthropologists have long known that Native Americans reared courageous, respectful children without using harsh coercive controls. Nevertheless, Europeans colonizing North America tried to “civilize” indigenous children in punitive boarding schools, unaware that Natives possessed a sophisticated philosophy that treated children with deep respect.”The Circle of CourageCircle Courage Long

“The Circle of Courage is a model of positive youth development first described in the book Reclaiming Youth at Risk, co-authored by Larry Brendtro, Martin Brokenleg, and Steve Van Bockern. The model integrates Native American philosophies of child-rearing, the heritage of early pioneers in education and youth work, and contemporary resilience research. The Circle of Courage is based in four universal growth needs of all children: belonging, mastery, independence, and generosity.

These traditional values are validated by contemporary child research and are consistent with the findings of Stanley Coopersmith who identified four foundations for self-worth: significance, competence, power, and virtue. These are summarized below:

Belonging
In Native American and First Nations cultures, significance was nurtured in communities of belonging. Lakota anthropologist Ella Deloria described the core value of belonging in these simple words: “Be related, somehow, to everyone you know.” Treating others as kin forges powerful social bonds that draw all into relationships of respect. Theologian Marty observed that throughout history the tribe, not the nuclear family, always ensured the
survival of the culture. Even if parents died or were not responsible, the tribe was always there to nourish the next generation.

Mastery
Competence in traditional cultures is ensured by guaranteed opportunity for mastery. Children were taught to carefully observe and listen to those with more experience. A person with greater ability was seen as a model for learning, not as a rival. Each person strives for mastery for personal growth, but not to be superior to someone else. Humans have an innate drive to become competent and solve problems. With success in surmounting challenges, the desire to achieve is strengthened.

Independence
Power in Western culture was based on dominance, but in tribal traditions it meant respecting the right for independence. In contrast to obedience models of discipline, Native teaching was designed to build respect and teach inner discipline. From earliest childhood, children were encouraged to make decisions, solve problems, and show personal responsibility. Adults modeled, nurtured, taught values, and gave feedback, but children were given abundant opportunities to make choices without coercion.

Generosity
Finally, virtue was reflected in the pre-eminent value of generosity. The central goal in Native American child-rearing is to teach the importance of being generous and unselfish. In the words of a Lakota Elder, “You should be able to give away your most cherished possession without your heart beating faster.” In helping others, youth create their own proof of worthiness: they make a positive contribution to another human life.”

All text sources: Reclaiming Youth International & Circle of Courage

Related video: Solution Tree: Reclaiming Youth at Risk

 
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Building Without Nails The Genius of Japanese Carpentry

Building Without Nails The Genius of Japanese Carpentry

We’ve heard of the genius “technology” used in ancient times to build towering monuments with nothing more than primitive tools like stones and ropes. The Egyptian pyramids of old is a great example.

Back in the far east, Japan had plenty to offer the ancient world as well when it came to resourceful inventions and crafts. Traditional Japanese Carpenters built houses, temples, and castles, without the use of nails, screws, or bolts.
In a documentary interviewing one of the few remaining practitioners of this seemingly lost art of carpentry, an old Japanese master craftsman exclaims “No bolts, no nails. It lasts longer!”. Proudly claiming its effectiveness that no one would be able to argue against its success in the form of several majestic towering temples all over Japan still standing to this day.
After being subjected to harsh weather and clashes of changes in civilizations for well over a thousand years. But with the bold statement comes a clear understanding that the success to this art isn’t because they designed it to withstand “against” nature, instead, it is all about being “with” nature.

Moving his livelihood to New York and sharing his art form of old Japanese wood working to the world, Isao Hanafusa, co-owner of Miya Shoji, has carved himself a unique niche in the competitive market of the furnishing industry.
Sought out and revered by New Yorkers wanting that embrace with nature in their interior decor with a style and durability in craftsmanship that can’t be rivaled by most factory produced alternatives.

All furniture selections in Miya Shoji showrooms are hand crafted, even the types lumber used in all his crafts are hand selected by Hanafusa himself. Isao Hanafusa was a graduate of Industrial Revolution studies of which he states has produced countless wonders for the modern world, but its cold machinery has also tragically killed off individual talent that is supposed to reside in craftsmen.

To this day, he rejects criticisms of his methods being unnecessarily old fashioned, because with all the bold talk of technologically advanced tools and methods used in modern day construction work, the Hanafusa family believes a thousand years worth of talent refinement and mastery should not be thrown away in exchange for mass production convenience.

Nor is it going to back down from the contest that their crafts will last even longer than rigid concrete and metal structures for the simple fact they are not designed to resist against the force of mother nature, but to live with her.

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Companion of God by Dadi Janki

Click to get the book

Companion of God by Dadi Janki
– Each topic is a page or less and pretty basic.
– When you build a house, every brick counts. When you build a character, every thought counts. I will not become pure unless I think about it first.
– Which self do you address?

Contents
– Dadi Janki: A Spiritual Leader
– A personal Account by Sister Jayanti

Part 1 FIRST STEPS ON THE SPIRITUAL PATH
– Dadi’s First Thoughts …
– Inspiration
– The Spiritual Path
– Original Peace
– Early Morning Contemplation
– Child of God
– Self-Respect
– Silence
– Introspection
– Cheerfulness
– Tolerance
– Spiritual Tolerance
– Faith in Others
– Respect for Others
– Co-operation
– Patience
– Humility
– Honesty
– The Drama of Life
– Playing your Part
– The Spiritual Army

Part 2 THE JOURNEY CONTINUES – TALKING TO THE SELF
– Dadi’s First Thoughts …
– Quality of Thoughts
– Courage
– Detachment
– Strength
– Purity
– Self-awareness
– Accomplishment
– Leading Others
– Women as Servers
– Subtle Service
– Pure ‘Thoughts
– Making Peace
– Religion
– Staying Peaceful
– Talking to the Self
– Ruler of the Self
– Learning
– Success

Part 3 OVERCOMING OBSTACLES ON THE PATH
– Dadi’s First Thoughts …
– Obstacles on the Path
– Obstacles Within
– Problem-solving
– Friends and Relations
– Comparison with Others
– Influences
– Friendship
– Relationships
– Emotional Pain
– Calming the Mind
– The Benefit of Sickness
– Understanding Sickness
– Physical Pain
– Spiritual Health
– Spiritual Medicine
– Worry
– Traps
– Removing Unworthy Habits
– Testing your Self-Respect
– Protection
– Desires
– Grades of Tolerance
– Mistakes
– Checking the Self
– Changing Thoughts

Part 4 MOVING ONWARD – DISCOVERING TRUE LOVE
– Dadi’s First Thoughts …
– Going Beyond
– Giving Your Heart to One
– Knowledge
– Ethics
– Integrity
– Contentment
– Thought Power
– Happiness
– Creating Peace
– Love
– Trust
– True Respect
– Spiritual Education
– Being a Teacher
– Spiritual Progress

Part 5 JOURNEY’S END – KNOWING GOD
– Dadi’s First Thoughts: ..
– Spirituality
– God the Almighty
– God’s Light
– Mercy
– God as My Everything
– Blessings from God
– Connection with God
– Knowing God
– God as Director
– Helping God
– Devotion and Wisdom
– TIle Intellect
– Eternal Happiness
– Newness
– Walking the Spiritual Path

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Leonardo DiCaprio’s – Before the Flood – Full Movie by National Geographic

Leonardo DiCaprio’s – Before the Flood – Full Movie by National Geographic

I’ve embeded a few full versions in case one does not work.

Join Leonardo DiCaprio as he explores the topic of climate change, and discovers what must be done today to prevent catastrophic disruption of life on our planet.

For every use of #BeforeTheFlood across Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram between October 24 – November 18, 21st Century Fox and National Geographic will together donate $1 to Pristine Seas and $1 to the Wildlife Conservation Society, up to $50,000 to each organization.

Summary:
– Crazy view of mining operations where it looks like the size of a city has been scooped out.
– Greenland melting and sea level rising is sinking cities. Some cities have been installing water pumps so the streets are not flooded and raising the roads. E.g. Boston, California, Miami Beach.
– Indian lady lectures Leo that US needs to pull it’s socks up and finger out as they are one of the biggest problem.
– Different island leaders talking about their sinking islands and relocating.
– Coral reefs dying doesn’t help capture the carbon while the planet produces more. Deforestation and burning trees make carbon ‘bombs’. Palm oil is a big one because it’s cheap and easy to produce. Indonesia where the rhino, orangutang and tiger live together is turning into a smoke city because of it.
– Even switching from beef to chicken you’d reduce your footprint by 50 to 80%.
– Elon Musk drops in to plug his battery and talk about how the Tesla batteries can do it. Plus introducing a carbon tax.
– NASA shows us the think onion skin layer of our atmosphere and to understand that is all we have. Heat map of the whole world and seeing the poles melting. Even if we stop burning fossil fuels the planet will still keep warming for a while.
– Global warming doesn’t only mean heat as other places are getting extremely cold.

Click to watch (FREE for limited time) on Amazon

 

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