Jack Canfield Jack Canfield author. speaker. motivator.

Affectionately known as "America's #1 Success Coach," Jack Canfield is the originator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and a leading authority in the areas of self-esteem, achievement motivation, and peak performance. [www.jackcanfield.com]

 
Arianna Huffington Arianna Huffington political powerhouse. media mogul. author.

Arianna Huffington is the co-founder and Editor in Chief of the Huffington Post and the author of twelve books. [www.huffingtonpost.com]

 
Seth Godin Seth Godin author. speaker. linchpin.

Seth Godin is a prominent author, blogger and speaker. [www.squidoo.com/linchpin]

 
Krishna Kaur Krishna Kaur yogi. philanthropist. dynamic teacher.

Krishna Kaur is the founder of YOGA for Youth, a program that takes yoga, meditation, and stimulating discussions on the philosophy of yoga to urban youth. [www.yogaforyouth.org]

 
Norman Lear Norman Lear producer. philanthropist. tv legend.

Norman Lear has enjoyed a long career in television and film. He is also a political and social activist and philanthropist. [www.normanlear.com]

 
Leilani Münter Leilani Münter race car driver. activist. carbon free girl.

Leilani Münter is a professional race car driver and an environmental activist who uses her voice in the number one spectator sport in America as a catalyst for change. [www.leilanimunter.com]

 
Kevin Bales Kevin Bales Freedom Fighter. Philanthropist. Game Changer.

By going undercover to meet slaves and slaveholders, Kevin Bales exposed modern slavery's penetration into the global economy. He co-founded Free the Slaves, which has helped to liberate thousands of slaves. [www.freetheslaves.net]

 
Sophie Chiche Sophie Chiche mom. big dreamer. lady in red.

Sophie Chiche, lifebyme.com founder and curator, enjoys asking deep questions and living a life of meaning. Today she's launching Shape House, an urban sweat lodge, a place to melt away fears and fat. [www.shapehousela.com]

 
Mastin Kipp Mastin Kipp Writer. Entrepreneur. Daily Lover.

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Liz Phair is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. [www.lizphair.com]

 
Desmond Tutu Desmond Tutu archbishop. author. peaceful leader.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu is Chairman of The Elders, a group of world leaders who address some of the world's most pressing problems. He works energetically for human-rights and in his ministry. [www.tutu.org]

 
Zainab Salbi Zainab Salbi author. ceo. humanitarian.

Zainab Salbi is the founder and CEO of Women for Women International, a group dedicated to helping women survivors of war rebuild their lives. [www.womenforwomen.org]

 
Sean Stephenson Sean Stephenson speaker. psychotherapist. life embracer.

Despite his physical challenges, Sean Stephenson has taken a stand for a quality of life that has inspired millions of people around the world. He's a professional speaker, psychotherapist, and author. [www.timetostand.com]

 
Kia Miller Kia Miller yogi. meditator. teacher.

Kia Miller teaches Yoga at Yoga Works in Los Angeles, leads teacher trainings, and runs retreats and workshops on meditation, chakras, pranayam, and mantras, and other practices. [www.kiamiller.com]

 
Simon Mainwaring Simon Mainwaring creator. writer. idea geek.

Simon Mainwaring is an ex-Nike/Wieden creative, former Worldwide Creative Director at Motorola/Ogilvy, branding/advertising writer, author/speaker/blogger, Australian, idea geek. [www.simonmainwaring.com]

 
Shannon Bindler Shannon Bindler Strategist. Writer. Life Coach.

Shannon Bindler is a style editor, life coach, and the co-founder of Get Up Girl, an empowerment company that inspires women to shine. [www.getupgirl.com]

 
Mathieu Bitton Mathieu Bitton Designer. Art Director. Passionate Creator.

Grammy-nominated art director/designer/photographer Mathieu Bitton has designed over 450 CDs and movie posters. He's a renowned collector of and authority on black films and their soundtracks. [www.candytangerine.com]

 
Jorge Perez Jorge Perez Agent. Producer. Photography Enthusiast.

Opus Reps founder and agent-producer Jorge Perez travels the world producing photo shoots with great photographers and celebrities. He's also very involved with Meals on Wheels in Los Angeles. www.opusreps.com

 

forgiveness

Maia Monasterios Maia Monasterios compassionate producer. loving daughter. wisdom seeker.

Maia Monasterios is an award-winning director, producer, and writer of such projects as PBS History Detectives stories including: Vietnam Diary, Titanic Luxury Liner Picture Frame, Clint Black's Rogue Book and The Beatles Autographs. [http://www.indiegogo.com/Vietnam-Veterans-Forgive-and-Heal]

maia_monasterios_feature

Lately, I’ve been putting a lot of emphasis on forgiveness, making amends, and connecting with family. We get so busy with work and planning for tomorrow that we forget to live in the moment and appreciate time. We don’t think about it on a daily basis, but every minute of life is so precious. We don’t know when our last day is or when we’ll lose the ones we love.

I worked on a story for PBS recently about the journey of Bob, a Vietnam War veteran trying to return the diary of a North Vietnamese soldier. Bob found the diary after a battle during the war. Though he couldn’t make out what it said, inside was a photo of two young girls.

While attempting to have the diary translated, Bob connected with a woman named Marjorie whose brother had died during the Vietnam War. When Marjorie heard the story of the diary, she didn’t think of the North Vietnamese soldier as the enemy. Instead, she realized such a diary could have belonged to her brother and had a photo of her in it. Immediately, she knew the diary needed to get back to the North Vietnamese soldier’s family.

Bob and Marjorie’s ability to forgive led them on an incredible journey. With the help of PBS, the diary was translated. Then, U.S. Defense Secretary Panetta returned the diary to Vietnam’s Minister of Defense. In exchange, Panetta received the letters of a fallen American soldier. The occasion was a gesture toward continued healing and improved relationships between the two countries.

During the making of this PBS show, what really got to me was the ability of so many people to humanize and forgive an enemy. It reminded me that life is too short and too precious to hold a grudge.

After my parents divorced, years ago, my relationships with my mother and father were strained. Marjorie helped me realize how important it is for me to rebuild and strengthen those relationships. Real love and the closeness of family are unconditional. There’s no mistake that’s unforgivable. Of course, that’s easy to say, but often hard to live.

Sometimes we focus too much on the need to be right. Sometimes we’re caught up in waiting for the other person to apologize. We forget that when we hold a grudge we’re only hurting ourselves. We’re the ones carrying around the pain.

Instead of focusing on something someone has done against you, remember the positive difference they’ve made in your life and the lessons you’ve learned. When we live our lives from that place, when we focus on gratitude and live from the heart, we find forgiveness. When we forgive, we live our lives really and truly at peace.

Maia Monasterios

 

The mentioned PBS program can be viewed at:

http://www.pbs.org/opb/historydetectives/video/2278232039/

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