November 30th, 2016

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Stay Awake!


At Rise Up! We created Ten Principles for Being Human: How to Turn Every Experience into Opportunity, eight years ago. Together the principles form a sustainable process to make good on our promise that;

Change is Inevitable; Transformation is a Choice.”

“Experience” can mean crisis, chaos, confrontation, loss, rejection, and despair.

It may also include lessons in resilience, vigilance, joy, surprise, gratitude, enlightenment and inspiration.

No matter what life brings us, the only thing we actually control is our attitude towards the experience and the choices we make because of the experience!

In shock, awe, and confrontation of the election, we’re faced with a wide range of possible reactions across racial, gender and economic lines. Emotion is stirred and lines drawn. Responsibility to support and honor every experience becomes vital.

At Rise Up! 2017, we agree (wholeheartedly!) with President Obama;

“Change requires more than righteous anger. It requires a PROGRAM and it requires organizing.”

With Obama’s challenge in mind, we’ve edited The Ten Principles to the Five most specific to the TRANSFORMATION we need now as a response to the CHANGE we can’t avoid. Challenges this great require programs, processes and sustainable steps in order to maintain our own sanity, organize, and make efforts for the community.

Over the next few months, I’ll write about these Five Principles and apply them to our current situation. I will be available to teach these Five or speak to groups that find them helpful. Each of us has contributions to make. At Rise Up! we begin with a new version of our work.

This isn’t time to sit on sidelines, lick wounds, blame and shame or give up. Not time to believe that anyone, anywhere; strong man or straw man;new cabinet or old campaign, government, or its questionable choices, can create LOVE, understanding, compassion and respect. This is our work to do; this is our time to do it… TOGETHER!

REFUSE to succumb to our weaker natures (we all have ‘em!) Stand together for one another; cross boundaries of belief, gender, geography and personal issues.Reach out and connect to our brothers and sisters who strive for peace, equality, justice, human rights and protection of the planet.

Future of the environment, our Muslim neighbors, Hispanic families, valued members of our communities (documented and UN-), our daughters and granddaughters, black, white, Asian and mixed race, whose health care services and civil rights are threatened,our LGBTQ friends and family; Native Americans whose sovereignty and treaties are trampled, are our united concern. Stand with us.

Rise Up! Followers believe in the interdependence of all life. The rainbow above, created by my grandson’s for our local Pride event, captures that belief. I thought of MLK’s “arc of the moral universe” and Jesse Jackson’s “Rainbow Coalition.” Great ideas are always relevant and forever viable and necessary; and today essential.

Those of you who know me personally know I am JUST LIKE YOU, over committed with an overfull plate of responsibilities and ready to cry “uncle!” BUT that was on November 7th.

Starting Nov. 9th, I challenged my commitment to Right-Intention and Right-Action. I am proud of the enormous contributions we all make everyday. “More” is the last word any of us need to hear! Better together is the right phrase!

Together we build bridges, ignite, incite and inform! Together we pay attention to what challenges us in a different way, one that is organized and catalyzed by united energy. “We” can do that!

Our personal transformations create a mighty force. Powerful interventions for fairness, respect, inclusion, and righteous actions become realistic goals. No matter what situation or crisis we face together, we “Turn Every Experience into Opportunity.” Join Rise Up! Learn processes to transform personal experience; become the bridge of knowledge and understanding to transform the many challenges ahead.

We can heal all wounds, create opportunities for justice, support one another, raise money for worthy projects when budgets are cut, reach out to those who need us most and continue to believe in what hardworking, dedicated people have always believed in: ultimate possibility and opportunity available in Every Experience.