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.

Entrepreneur and writer Mastin Kipp founded TheDailyLove.com, which merges pop culture with inspiration, and co-founded The Love Yourself Company, an apparel company that has started a global self-esteem movement. [www.TheDailyLove.com]

 
Liz Phair Liz Phair singer. musician. crier.

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

 

family

Gary Kowalski Gary Kowalski family guy. nature connoisseur. spiritual connector.

Gary Kowalski is a graduate of the Harvard Divinity School, a Unitarian Universalist minister, and the author of seven books on nature, spirituality, science, and the environment. [www.kowalskibooks.com]

What matters to me is family – feeling connected to a circle of care and love. Over time, that circle has widened to include relatives of many species.

I was grieving my grandfather’s death, for example, when I first heard about the gorilla Koko and her kitten. Koko, who’d managed to learn American Sign Language, got the kitten for her birthday. When the little cat escaped from the Gorilla Foundation and was killed, the ape was asked what she understood about the accident. “Why do gorillas die?” a trainer asked Koko, who responded with the signs for “trouble” and “old.” “How do gorillas feel when they die? Happy, sad, afraid?” Koko answered simply, “Sleep.”

At that point I’d received a degree from Harvard Divinity and been ordained, but graduate school doesn’t teach you the answers to questions like Why do people die? or Where do you find hope? My granddad was the primary male parent figure in my life, so I was struggling with his loss. But somehow Koko’s story opened my heart. I understood that my private burden of pain wasn’t so private after all. Though I’d lost a beloved family member, I was really part of a much larger family than I’d previously imagined: a community of passion and compassion that included me but outlasted me, that had been evolving for millions of years.

Since then, my “family” has grown. Two children joined our household, including a biological daughter and an adopted son. A proprietary strand of DNA isn’t really essential, I’ve learned. So, other family members would have to include the dogs who’ve shared our home, the chickens out back who give us eggs, and the chickadees who visit the feeder in winter. In inspired moments, I feel related to all of nature.

It’s the illusion of separateness that creates much of the unhappiness in our lives. Interdependence is the reality, both science and religion agree. But our culture encourages a “What’s in it for me?” attitude that leads us to regard other people as strangers and the natural world as a collection of commodities placed here for our personal gain. Alienation is the result. 

We are all related, sharing one Earth, one history and one fate. To renew that sense of kinship, plant a garden. Learn a new language. Love unconditionally, the way your dog does. Help those you can. Practice kindness without limits. 

– Gary Kowalski

Comments

Explore More Meaning

  • Deidre Combs
    Deidre Combs Deidre Combs leadership consultant. author. storm chaser.

    Deidre Combs provides leadership and cross-cultural conflict skills as a consultant, coach, author, mediator, and professor. She developed the core foundations course for Montana State University's Leadership Fellows Certificate Program. [www.combsandcompany.com]

     
  • Paul Cummins
    Paul Cummins Paul Cummins Poet. Educator. Philanthropist.

    Author, poet, and educator Paul F. Cummins is the Executive Director of the New Visions Foundation, which finds innovative ways to educate underserved children. [www.newvisionsfnd.org]

     
  • Tbird Luv
    Tbird Luv Tbird Luv melodic explorer. structured whirlwind. continuous grower.

    The musical genius of Tbird Luv is about taking risks and creating beauty. She hopes to inspire all of us to take whatever we find beautiful and stand behind it, support it, and proliferate it. [www.tbirdluvmusic.com]

     
  • Phillip Maher
    Phillip Maher Phillip Maher playful educator. success redefiner. guy next door.

    Philip Maher has travelled to more than 80 countries, working in some of the harshest environments as a communications professional and photographer. He asks one question in his work: How do we get people to care? [www.philipmaher.ca]

     
  • Brooke Burke and Lisa Rosenblatt
    Brooke Burke and Lisa Rosenblatt Brooke Burke and Lisa Rosenblatt female empowerers. entrepreneurs. modern moms.

    Lisa Rosenblatt and Brooke Burke are the CEOs of ModernMom.com, creating a community for the woman behind the mom. [www.modernmom.com]

     
  • Dave Elliott
    Dave Elliott Dave Elliott relationship guru. cupid assister. blessing counter.

    Dave Elliott is a relationship expert and coach who founded Legendary Love For Life. He develops content and products, and blogs for a number of relationship websites. [www.legendaryloveforlife.com]

     
  • Gwyneth Jones
    Gwyneth Jones Gwyneth Jones should exterminator. goal pusher. honesty pioneer.

    Through Skype-based life coaching, Gwyneth Jones helps people get in touch with their true selves, find out what's holding them back, turn limiting beliefs around, and achieve their goals. [www.makelifemagic.blogspot.com]

     
  • Neale Donald Walsch
    Neale Donald Walsch Neale Donald Walsch conversationalist. author. spiritual messenger.

    A modern day spiritual messenger, bestselling author Neale Donald Walsch founded the Conversations with God Foundation, dedicated to inspiring the world to move toward peace, clarity, and love. [www.nealedonaldwalsch.com]

     
  • More

Contributors

  • Barrie Osborne
    Barrie Osborne Barrie Osborne producer. human studier. tall tale teller.

    Barrie Osborne is an Oscar winning producer whose body of work includes The Matrix and The Lord of the Rings trilogy. He is currently producing the movie, Syrup, and executive producing The Great Gatsby.

     
  • Kathlyn Hendricks
    Kathlyn Hendricks Kathlyn Hendricks body-mind integration pioneer. relationship expert. mover and shaker.

    Bestselling author Kathlyn Hendricks, Ph.D., A.D.T.R., has been a pioneer in the field of body-mind integration and body-centered relationship transformation for nearly forty years. [www.hendricks.com]

     
  • Charles Sophy
    Charles Sophy Charles Sophy doctor. author. sweeper.

    Dr. Charles Sophy has dedicated his life to the physical and mental well-being of children and families from all walks of life. [www.drsophy.com]

     
  • Maria Ross
    Maria Ross Maria Ross surviving storyteller. brand muse. blessing counter.

    Inspirational speaker, author, and brand strategist Maria Ross is the creator of Red Slice, which helps entrepreneurs ignite their brands and delight their minds. Her latest book is Rebooting My Brain. [www.red-slice.com]

     
  • Desmond Tutu
    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]

     
  • Tanya Zoeller
    Tanya Zoeller Tanya Zoeller actress. passion pursuer. creative meditation practicer.

    When Tanya Zoeller was young she found herself seeing plays and films and hours later pondering the questions they raised about what it meant to be human. She dedicated her life to becoming a part of these stories. [www.tanyazoeller.com]

     
  • Cheryl Bigus
    Cheryl Bigus Cheryl Bigus truth seeker. voice attendant. nurturing teacher.

    Cheryl Bigus works with women who've neglected their well-being. She helps women regain vitality and hotness in their lives without punishing themselves through diets of deprivation or extreme workouts. [www.naturalvore.com]

     
  • Aaron Ableman
    Aaron Ableman Aaron Ableman edutainer. musician. balancer.

    Aaron Ableman is an acclaimed "edutainer." He grew up under the mentorship of Hopi elders and children's musician Raffi, and has shared stages with K'NAAN and Joan Baez, among others. [www.balanceedutainment.com]

     
  • Alison Levine
    Alison Levine Alison Levine high climber. responsible risker. philanthropist.

    Alison Levine is a mountaineer, explorer, teacher, and founder of the Climb High Foundation, dedicated to improving the lives of African women by training them to be local guides and porters. [www.alisonlevine.com]

     
  • Dave Smiley
    Dave Smiley Dave Smiley filmmaker. former prison psychologist. transformationalist.

    Dr. Dave Smiley, a former prison psychologist, had an awakening at age 52. Retiring early, he went on to create the first transformational film about spirituality, the mind, and weight loss. [http://TheInnerWeigh.com]

     
  • Tessa Williams
    Tessa Williams Tessa Williams ivy leaguer. playwright. core friend.

    Recent Yale grad Tessa Williams has written numerous award-winning plays. Currently, she's working as a writer's assistant on an ABC television show. [www.facebook.com/tessaleighwilliams]

     
  • Jason Weberman
    Jason Weberman Jason Weberman life coach. inner strength accessor. northern star.

    Using his coaching and corporate background, North Star Coaching founder and president Jason Weberman helps clients access their own inner strengths to take powerful steps towards being effective leaders. [www.northstarcoaching.com]

     
  • Kamal Ravikant
    Kamal Ravikant Kamal Ravikant ego eliminator. slow-motion shifter. cognizant writer.

    Kamal Ravikant is a tech entrepreneur, investor, and bestselling author. [www.kamal.co]

     
  • Agapi Stassinopoulos
    Agapi Stassinopoulos Agapi Stassinopoulos unbinder. love giver. greek goddess.

    Inspiring teacher and published author Agapi Stassinpoulos conducts seminars worldwide for men and women, empowering them to recognize their individual gifts and create the lives they want. [www.unbindingtheheart.com]

     
  • Bob Walter
    Bob Walter Bob Walter early riser. mystic identifier. self opener.

    Bob Walter is an editor and executive with several not-for-profit organizations, including the Joseph Campbell Foundation, an organization that preserves, protects, and perpetuates the work of influential American mythologist Joseph Campbell. [www.jcf.org]

     
  • Judi Goldfader
    Judi Goldfader Judi Goldfader non-profit philanthropist. delight seeker. curious cat.

    Judi Goldfader is a philanthropy consultant, non-profit strategist, and development advisor with 30 years of professional commitment to social change and social justice. [www.goldfader.com]

     
  • Parris Whittingham
    Parris Whittingham Parris Whittingham moment capturer. love admirer. friend of the bride + groom.

    Parris Whittingham is a relationship photographer and creative producer. Based in NYC, he collaborates with a select couples and business clients to unleash their stories. [fromparriswithlove.com]

     
  • Jennifer Sall
    Jennifer Sall Jennifer Sall interactive marketer. pr strategist. awareness harnesser.

    Interactive marketing and online PR strategist Jennifer Sall works with companies of all sizes to leverage the immediacy of the Web to build brand awareness and revenue. [www.unionxunion.com]

     
  • Keidi Keating
    Keidi Keating Keidi Keating word-wise fundraiser. worldwide contributor. butterfly embracer.

    Keidi Keating is an editor, ghostwriter, and publisher. She is currently living between Spain and the United States. Along with The Light, she writes books that spread Loving and Light to the world. [thelightnetwork.com/thelight]

     
  • Ethan Greenberg
    Ethan Greenberg Ethan Greenberg life savorer. grandson. routine thrower-outer.

    Ethan Greenberg is a 16-year-old who lives life with curiosity and ambition to find out how he can make his own impact on the world.

     
  • Annie Kagan
    Annie Kagan Annie Kagan afterlife communicator. awakened sister. imperfection embracer.

    In her new book, The Afterlife of Billy Fingers: How My Bad-Boy Brother Proved to Me There's Life After Death, Dr. Annie Kagan shares the extraordinary story of her after death communications with her brother Billy. [www.anniekagan.com]

     
  • Todd Gailun
    Todd Gailun Todd Gailun world citizen. conversation seeker. enthusiasm retainer.

    Todd Gailun is an entrepreneur building neurotechnologies. He's curator of the seminal TEDx at the Rubin Museum on Spirituality and The Hero's Journey. He also explores the Zen, tango and yoga threads.

     
  • Rita James
    Rita James Rita James community maven. yoga instructor. living example.

    Rita James is a community events expert who realized that if she didn't go within she'd go without. What resonates from within is teaching yoga and being an example to her children.

     
  • Tammy Camp
    Tammy Camp Tammy Camp venture investor. creative adventurer. giver.

    Tammy Camp is a venture investor, company advisor, and adventure traveler. She's taken part in numerous successful business endeavors, including facilitating over a billion dollars in sales. [www.tammycamp.com]

     
  • Scott Sandler
    Scott Sandler Scott Sandler father. papa. daddy.

    After enduring an incredible tragedy, architectural photographer Scott Sandler started Rachel's Registry to help cancer patients more easily find current and pertinent clinical trials. [www.rachelsregistry.com]

     
  • Elizabeth TenHouten
    Elizabeth TenHouten Elizabeth TenHouten glamour giver. secret sharer. slumber party hotshot.

    Accomplished beauty expert and author, Elizabeth TenHouten has devoted her career to bringing out the best in women, naturally. Her book, Natural Beauty: Homemade Recipes for Radiant Skin & Hair features recipes for homemade topical treatments and skincare remedies. [www.elizabethtenhouten.com]

     
  • Wrenwyck Williams
    Wrenwyck Williams Wrenwyck Williams jet-setting exec. family guy. man of god.

    Wrenwyck Williams has been a highly sought-after corporate executive for the past 27 years and has served as president and CEO of multi-million dollar corporations. He is a devoted husband and father to two beautiful daughters. [www.babyfoodbook.net/book]

     
  • Stacey Kaiser
    Stacey Kaiser Stacey Kaiser lifestyle coach. psychotherapist. balancer.

    Stacy Kaiser is a psychotherapist, lifestyle coach, author, and media personality with a reputation for bringing thoughtful and provocative insights to a wide range of topics. [www.stacykaiser.com]

     
  • Bryant McGill
    Bryant McGill Bryant McGill heartfelt activist. truth detective. passionate space-seeker.

    Bryant McGill is an internationally renowned author, essayist, speaker, and activist in the fields of self-development, personal freedom, and human rights. [www.bryantmcgill.com/vor]

     
  • More

Connection


© 2010-2024 lifebyme.com. All rights reserved. (design by nodethirtythree)