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To Fall in Love With Anyone, Do This. The Opposite of Rape Culture is Nurturance Culture. The opposite of masculine rape culture is masculine nurturance culture: men* increasing their capacity to nurture, and becoming whole.

The Opposite of Rape Culture is Nurturance Culture

The Ghomeshi trial is back in the news, and it brings violent sexual assault back into people’s minds and daily conversations. Of course violence is wrong, even when the court system for handling it is a disaster. That part seems evident. Triggering, but evident. But there is a bigger picture here. A meme going around says ‘Rape is about violence, not sex. Violence is nurturance turned backwards. These things are connected, they must be connected. Compassion for self and compassion for others grow together and are connected; this means that men finding and recuperating the lost parts of themselves will heal everyone. 1. 2.

To heal rape culture, then, men build masculine nurturance skills: nurturance and recuperation of their true selves, and nurturance of the people of all genders around them. In Ursula K. These things seem connected to me. Six Ways To Show Your Love. How To Practice Compassion In Relationships.

Six Ways To Show Your Love.

A couple asked me recently what the Buddhist view is on marriage. They were planning their wedding and in the process of writing their vows. I don’t know what the Buddha would have said, but what occurred to me in that moment was how committing to loving one person for the rest of your life is taking compassion practice to a whole new level.

In the Buddhist teachings there are many guidelines and methods to help us become more compassionate people. Fox’s Garden: A Tender Wordless Story About the Gift of Grace and the Transformative Power of Kindness to Those Kicked Away. By Maria Popova A gentle reminder that life can be a cold wasteland of cruelty or a whimsical wonderland of grace, depending on the generosity of spirit with which we approach it.

Fox’s Garden: A Tender Wordless Story About the Gift of Grace and the Transformative Power of Kindness to Those Kicked Away

The question of human nature — whether we are born full of goodness or spend our lives concealing our inherently rotten souls — is perhaps the most timeless and most significant of humanity’s inquiries. A subtle and infinitely heartening answer comes in Fox’s Garden (public library) — a breathtaking wordless picture-book by French artist Princesse Camcam, born Camille Garoche, whose lyrical cut-paper illustrations tell a story of cruelty redeemed by kindness, of coldness melted away by the warmth of compassion that is our true nature. One cold winter night, the fox loses her way in the forest and stumbles into a village. Rewriting the Book of Belonging: Anne Lamott on the True Gift of Friendship and the Uncomfortable Art of Letting Yourself Be Seen. By Maria Popova “Trappings and charm wear off… Let people see you.”

Rewriting the Book of Belonging: Anne Lamott on the True Gift of Friendship and the Uncomfortable Art of Letting Yourself Be Seen

Beyond having written one of the finest books on writing ever published, Anne Lamott embraces language and life with equal zest, squeezing from the intersection wisdom of the most soul-stretching kind. Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace (public library | IndieBound) shines a sidewise gleam at Lamott’s much-loved meditations on why perfectionism kills creativity and how we keep ourselves small by people-pleasing to explore the boundless blessings of our ample imperfections, from which our most expansive and transcendent humanity springs. John Maeda on Creative Leadership, Talking vs. Making, and Why Human Relationships Are a Work of Craftsmanship.

By Maria Popova “You make relationships.

John Maeda on Creative Leadership, Talking vs. Making, and Why Human Relationships Are a Work of Craftsmanship

One at a time. With the same painstaking attention to craft that you knew as a maker.” “A leader’s real ‘authority’ is a power you voluntarily give him,” David Foster Wallace wrote in what remains the wisest meditation on leadership I’ve ever encountered, “and you grant him this authority not with resentment or resignation but happily.” But for many people in creative fields — artists, designers, filmmakers, writers — “leadership” remains an alienating notion that belongs in the business world or, worse, politics. The Ethics of Family Relationships, with Robin Grille and Pam Monaco, PhD. Meanwhile: An Illustrated Love Letter to the Living Fabric of a City and Our Shared Human Longing to Be Understood. By Maria Popova A tender reminder that however vast our differences, we are bonded by the yearning to feel seen for who we are.

Meanwhile: An Illustrated Love Letter to the Living Fabric of a City and Our Shared Human Longing to Be Understood

I’ve written before that every city needs a love letter. Love Undetectable: Andrew Sullivan on Why Friendship Is a Greater Gift Than Romantic Love. By Maria Popova Reflections on the cornerstone of our flourishing.

Love Undetectable: Andrew Sullivan on Why Friendship Is a Greater Gift Than Romantic Love

“A principal fruit of friendship,” Francis Bacon observed, “is the ease and discharge of the fulness and swellings of the heart, which passions of all kinds do cause and induce.” Thoreau would “sometimes awake in the night and think of friendship and its possibilities.” St. Why Love Needs Space: Applying the Benjamin Franklin Effect to Romantic Relationships. A Psyche the Size of the Sea  A foundational observation of ecopsychology is that mental health is intertwined with the health of our planet.

A Psyche the Size of the Sea 

As Theodore Roszak, a spokesman for the field, stated in his 1992 book The Voice of the Earth: "Ecopsychology holds that there is a synergistic interplay between planetary and personal well-being. The term 'synergy' is chosen deliberately for its traditional theological connotation, which once taught that the human and divine are cooperatively linked in the quest for salvation. The contemporary ecological translation of the term might be: the needs of the planet are the needs of the person, the rights of the person are the rights of the planet. " Andy Fisher expressed this concisely in his book Radical Ecopsychology: "Ecopsychology is a psychological undertaking that essentially says 'we too are part of nature.'"

In Pieces: French Illustrator Marion Fayolle’s Wordless Narratives About Human Relationships. By Maria Popova Fragmentary glimpses of humanity at the intersection of the funny, the philosophical, and the confounding.

In Pieces: French Illustrator Marion Fayolle’s Wordless Narratives About Human Relationships

In Pieces (public library) is an uncommon piece of visual poetry by French illustrator and comic artist Marion Fayolle that calls to mind at once the surrealist whimsy of Codex Seraphinianus, the visual neatness of Gregory Blackstock’s illustrated lists, and the vignettes of Blexbolex — and yet Fayolle’s is a sensibility unlike anything that ever existed. Sometimes funny, sometimes poignant, sometimes light, and sometimes deeply philosophical, Fayolle’s beautiful wordless narratives are anything but silent, speaking of love and loss, passion and betrayal, longing and lust.

They are fragmentary yet meaningful, much like the brain fuses together disjointed pieces of the world into a cohesive image, an impression, a story. Donating = Loving Bringing you (ad-free) Brain Pickings takes hundreds of hours each month. Brain Pickings has a free weekly newsletter. The Eightfold Path to a Truly Great Hug. ~ Bryan Reeves. Via Bryan Reeveson Mar 10, 2014 A truly great hug is a rich experience that has you pull another human body deliciously tight into yours as a way of saying, “I so deeply value your presence that I’m taking this exact moment to feel you, smell you, breathe with you—essentially stamp your being into my cellular memory so that even though we may be soon apart, you will in fact always be with me in the living fabric of my existence.”

The Eightfold Path to a Truly Great Hug. ~ Bryan Reeves

Also, hugs are physically and emotionally healthy for you—ocytocin, dopamine, bonding, decreased stress, etc. Leo Buscaglia on Education, Industrialized Conformity, and How Stereotypes and Labels Limit Love. By Maria Popova “Labels are distancing phenomena. They push us away from each other.” Simon Sinek: Why good leaders make you feel safe. A Permaculture *of* Community. Take dandelions. You can plant a perfect lawn but if your neighbors don’t eradicate their dandelions, you’ve got them again. Or take the common cold. You can take vitamins, eat great food, work out, but if your co-workers have the flu or if your kid’s kindergarten has the flu, you’ll likely get it.

We are told we are all powerful individuals. With enough intention and work we can climb any mountain, solve any problem and even change any ills of the world. Truth and Tenderness: Ralph Waldo Emerson on Friendship and Its Two Essential Conditions. By Maria Popova “A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere.” It’s been argued that friendship is a greater gift than romantic love (though it’s not uncommon for one to turn abruptly into the other), but whatever the case, friendship is certainly one of the most rewarding fruits of life — from the sweetness of childhood friendships to the trickiness of workplace ones. This delicate dance has been examined by thinkers from Aristotle to Francis Bacon to Thoreau, but none more thoughtfully than by Ralph Waldo Emerson. In an essay on the subject, found in his altogether soul-expanding Essays and Lectures (public library; free download), Emerson considers the intricate dynamics of friendship, beginning with our often underutilized innate capacities:

Julian Treasure: 5 ways to listen better. My Teacher Is a Monster: A Sweet Modern Fable About Seeing Through the Otherness of Others. By Maria Popova A gentle illustrated reminder that we can’t love what we don’t know. “Love,” wrote Leo Tolstoy in his poignant letters to Gandhi on why we hurt one another, “represents the highest and indeed the only law of life, as every man knows and feels in the depths of his heart (and as we see most clearly in children)…” Tolstoy believed that if only we managed to see through our superficial differences and our fear of the other’s otherness, we’d recognize instantly the universe’s basic “law of love” — something to which we are born attuned, only to forget as we enter adulthood.

Kids, of course, can often be especially cruel in their inability to accept otherness — but that’s why it’s especially enchanting to witness, let alone spark, the precise moment in which a child lets go of some learned bias and sees in another person his or her intrinsic goodness, a return to innocence and Tolstoy’s “law of love.” Five Habits of Truly Effective Communicators. Dave Meslin: The antidote to apathy. Quantum Physics Tells Us Separation Is Only An Illusion. Masters of Love. Every day in June, the most popular wedding month of the year, about 13,000 American couples will say “I do,” committing to a lifelong relationship that will be full of friendship, joy, and love that will carry them forward to their final days on this earth.

Except, of course, it doesn’t work out that way for most people. How Relationships Refine Our Truths: Adrienne Rich on the Dignity of Love. What Highly Sensitive People Can Teach Us All About Kindness. Why People Cheat: A Couples Therapist Explains. The fastest way to fight prejudice? Open up. Equality advocate Ash Beckham hopes her habit of chronic over-sharing leads to more honest conversations. Recognizing Each Other in the Commons: The Basis for an Alternative Political Philosophy of Systemic Change? By Helene Finidori Time is running short for a paradigm shift. When it comes to our individual and collective engagement in making the world a better place, we often talk about uniting in diversity: uniting in harmony to multiply outcomes and uniting in diversity for multiple focus and resilience.

System of Systems. Taming the Mammoth: Why You Should Stop Caring What Other People Think. This is Part 2. Part 1 is here. A “Dynamic Interaction”: Leo Buscaglia on Why Love Is a Learned Language. By Maria Popova. How to Navigate the Murky Waters of Workplace Friendships: Wisdom from Adam Smith and Aristotle. By Maria Popova. George Saunders on the Power of Kindness, Animated. With his gentle wisdom and disarming warmth, Saunders manages to dissolve some of our most deeply engrained culturally conditioned cynicism into a soft and expansive awareness of the greatest gift one human being can give another — those sacred exchanges that take place in a moment of time, often mundane and fleeting, but echo across a lifetime with inextinguishable luminosity. The Science and Philosophy of Friendship: Lessons from Aristotle on the Art of Connecting.

By Maria Popova “Friends hold a mirror up to each other; through that mirror they can see each other in ways that would not otherwise be accessible to them, and it is this mirroring that helps them improve themselves as persons.” Buddhadharma In Everyday Life. ~ via Linda Lewis. Lojong 12, “Drive All Blames into One” 3 Bad Habits That Can Derail Any Relationship. As a marriage therapist, one of the questions I get asked most by family and friends is What should I do so we don’t end up in couples therapy? As a wife, I get it: you want to know what goes wrong in other relationships so you can avoid it in yours. Unfortunately, there’s no magic checklist that will guarantee marital bliss. But I’ve seen enough couples in my professional life that I can offer an insider’s look at the three bad habits that I see often in the unhappy couples who find themselves on my couch.

Einstein on Kindness, Our Shared Existence, and Life’s Highest Ideals. Five Communication Mistakes Almost Every Couple Makes. Meanwhile: An Illustrated Love Letter to the Living Fabric of a City and Our Shared Human Longing to Be Understood. How to interact with the introverted. How Being Humble, Kind, and Calm Will Make Your Life Easier. The “I” of the Beholder: What Is the Self? The science of love: How "positivity resonance" shapes the way we connect. WATCH: What Happened When A Kid Asked Her, 'Are You A Boy Or A Girl?'  Happy Birthday, Jack Kerouac: The Beat Icon on Kindness, the Self Illusion, and the “Golden Eternity”

Brené Brown on Vulnerability, Human Connection, and the Difference Between Empathy and Sympathy, Animated. The Science of Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect. A Simple Tool That Will Improve Every One Of Your Relationships. Amanda Palmer on the Art of Asking and the Shared Dignity of Giving and Receiving. What makes something better is Connection. {Viral Video} RSA Animate - The Power of Outrospection.