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jane, the flamingseed

Jane Brunette

Jane Brunette is a meditation teacher, writer and poet, the publisher of Flamingseed Press, a contributor to the Huffington post, as well as the founder of an international network of “free writers” called Writing from the Soul. She teaches and writes about spiritual practices for turning challenging times into opportunities to develop a more soulful and meaningful approach to life, both individually and collectively.

I first met Jane through one of her blog posts which a friend posted on facebook. It was called Blossoming through Shared Suffering, and was about inspiring acts of generosity taking place in Japan in the wake of the nuclear disaster. I was so moved by her writing that I started exploring her blog (Flamingseed) and was immediately taken by her opening words:

Some seeds only germinate in a forest fire. This is an invitation to become a flaming seed: one who uses challenging conditions to blossom rather than burn. For inspiration, I comb the streets — not to mention the forests and villages, as well as the contemplative and mystic traditions — for insights, spiritual practices and visionary ideas on cultivating a loving, generative world view regardless of circumstances. And I doggedly question cultural and spiritual assumptions so that we can open fresh to these changing times with curiosity, innocence and a sense of adventure.

I then discovered that this fellow nomad who travels through Asia, South America and the U.S. was temporarily staying in Ubud where I was living.  I started attending her Writing from the Soul circles, which gave birth to my first poems.  I came to treasure the deeply soulful way with which she supports others to access their deepest creativity.  I also recognized that, like many other bright lights out there who give the world their all, she had a deep need for rest and rejuvenation. So, when I heard about her plan to retreat in the Andes mountains of Ecuador for several months to do some deep listening and writing, I felt called to support her journey with a $1,000 gift.

Jane’s post-Ecuador report back to me came in the form of a poem, Grasshopper Guru, which is also the title of her forthcoming book:

  Grasshopper Guru

 I left the stormy city traffic
for a cabin made of dry mud
and that grasshopper guru,
who for three days spoke truth
from the kitchen wall,
left through the open window,
then came back
to make one more point
about the necessity of idleness.

 

As I started reading the book manuscript she sent along with the title poem, I was touched to discover that the acknowledgment section of the book opened with these words:

“Special thanks to Aya’s Rivers flow fund for a gift which supported my 6-month retreat in a small adobe cabin in the Andes mountains of Ecuador during the winter of 2011. A number of these poems, including the title poem, were born from the drone from the river in the valley below.”   

2013 update ~ Grasshopper Guru (the book) is now available through Amazon.  You can read more about the insights that came to Jane during her time in Ecuador in her confessions of a recovering consumer, published on her blog. I also recommend reading the beautiful articles she wrote for the Huffington Post during that time: “How Occupy Wall Street Demonstrates the Power of Meditation in Action” and “Can a Word Change Your Life?” My personal favorite piece by Jane, written a few months earlier in Bali is “Four Steps to Transform your Personal Suffering into Universal Compassion.”


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“money & life” nearly ready for launch

A documentary by Katie Teague

My friend Katie Teague has been touring the United States to show a rough cut of her “Money and Life” documentary which explains why the current monetary system is failing us, and gives a bird’s eye view of the alternatives emerging in the New Economy movement.  The movie has been greeted with standing ovations, and she’s now getting requests for screening all over the world. If you want to help transition our crumbling monetary system from dying caterpillar to butterfly, so that we adopt currency systems that free rather than freeze human creativity and generosity, please contribute to the $30,000 needed to get the movie to launch.

Even if $10 or $50 is all you feel you can afford to donate to her kickstarter campaign, you could be one of the many little streams that will get this growing river to the open sea!  My flow fund is empty at the moment, and so I just gave Katie $50 of my personal funds (which also come from gifts) and I became her 155th backer.  As of tonight, she has raised $15,367 out of the $30,000 she needs, from 168 backers, and there are 17 days left to go.  If you wish to support the emergence of a healthier monetary system, please join our collective of grassroots funders and help get Katie Teague‘s “Money and Life” documentary to official launch.  This link here will take you to her Kickstarter page.


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filiz telek’s brave new world

Filiz Telek

Filiz is a fellow nomad, connector, story-teller, and ambassador for the gift economy, who keeps an inspiring blog called Brave New World, while traveling around the world interviewing people who make a difference, and documenting their ideas and projects through short videos and blog posts. In her own words, she’s “telling the new story of Earth and humanity.” She is also involved in anchoring permaculture and time banking paradigms in Turkey, and is part of Charles Eisenstein’s support team in helping to disseminate the ideas in Sacred Economics. I first “met” her through The Gift, a bold letter in which she invited her community to become part of her “gift tribe” and help her to stay free from having to monetize her time and energy. It was forwarded to me by a dear friend who felt that Filiz and I were on a parallel track and should meet each other.  I felt a great deal of resonance in what Filiz discussed in her letter, and was drawn to support this fellow ‘imaginal cell” to follow her soul’s calling. In June of 2012, I gave her the last $200 left in my flow fund at the time, wishing I had a lot more to give to her. She’s one of the people who has been inspiring me to find ways to flow fund beyond my official three year assignment, by calling upon new sources of financial support to keep the experiment going

I invite you to explore Filiz’ website, read her very inspiring invitation to join her gift community, watch her video interviews, and read her beautiful poems. Some of my favorite blog posts include:

You can watch Filiz’ video interviews including interviews of Alpha Lo talking about gifting circles, Nina Simons, the founder of Bioneers, and Annie Leonard the Producer of the Story of Stuff.


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she’s making a movie about money

Katie Teague

I first heard about Katie Teague while having dinner with my friend Brock in Boulder, Colorado, back in November of 2010. I had just talked to him about my interest in monetary systems and complementary currencies, and shared that I was a big fan of currency designer Bernard Lietaer.  He commented that his friend Katie was interested in similar things. “She’s making a movie about money,” he added. I was curious to hear more. When he mentioned that she had been interviewing many visionaries and out-of-the-box thinkers, my curiosity sky-rocketed. I wondered whether she had talked with any of the people I knew in the new economy and complementary currency movements.  A few minutes later, he and I were online and taking a closer look at Katie’s website.  I was thrilled to discover what she had been doing. She had already interviewed over thirty thought leaders and practitioners, focused on the need to upgrade, diversify and democratize our crumbling monetary system, and to evolve our individual and collective relationship to money. She was making a movie to explain what needs to change if money is to free rather than freeze human creativity and generosity, and if it is to support rather than jeopardize the creation of a sustainable world. The people that were featured on her Vimeo page included several friends like Orland Bishop, Vicki Robin, Nipun Mehta, Ocean Robbins, Susan Davis, Charles Eisenstein, and lo and behold, Bernard Lietaer himself.

Read the whole story


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undamming the rivers of wealth

Lindsey Wise

May the rivers of wealth be undammed
and flow freely over the earth.
May the gifts move through increased hands
until all people experience the abundance of life.
~ Marion Weber

I love this invocation.  A few weeks ago, I invited friends who are musicians and singers to create sung versions of the invocation, to amplify the power of its words. You can hear my friend Lindsey Wise‘s version on Soundcloud.


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jane, the flamingseed

Jane Brunette is a meditation teacher, writer and poet, the publisher of Flamingseed...
article post
thumbnail free flow article post

“money & life” nearly ready for launch

My friend Katie Teague has been touring the United States to show a rough cut of her...
article post

filiz telek’s brave new world

Filiz is a fellow nomad, connector, story-teller, and ambassador for the gift economy,...
article post

she’s making a movie about money

I first heard about Katie Teague while having dinner with my friend Brock in Boulder,...
article post

undamming the rivers of wealth

May the rivers of wealth be undammed and flow freely over the earth. May the gifts move...
article post