When Everything Goes Wrong

Charter for Compassion
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Charter for Compassion Workshop at the University of Johannesburg

When everything goes wrong, what a joy to test your soul and see if it has endurance and courage!

Dear Friends,

The Greek writer, Nikos Kazantzakis through the voice of his protagonist, Zorba the Greek, gave us many memorable lines that pause. None struck me as being more poignant than “Life is trouble, only death is not.” For me, I read that line during the height of the Vietnam War and I was certain that Zorba was right. However, was he? Aren’t most of us driven to hope—hope that things will be better, hope that we are smarter than we appear to be, hope that children will live in a better world in the future, hope that we can “cure” the earth. Perhaps if we didn’t have this hope it would be difficult to near impossible to get up in the morning. Each day as I interact with people all over the world who are doing remarkable things for their neighbors, their communities and their brothers and sisters around the world, I know that we are surviving on hope, and that life need not be trouble, but that it can be filled with happiness and fulfillment. I believe that is what the Charter for Compassion movement offers.

Each day the Charter makes wonderful connections between people, organizations and city initiatives and each week we receive countless messages for help—everything from people wanting to find housing to individuals who want to build a compassionate community in a war torn neighborhood. We try our best to put people in contact with one another, to offer hope, and to continue to do this we need your help:

  • if you have contacts in Syria, Iraq or Sri Lanka please let us know; there are people in these areas who are working on compassionate efforts and need more support.
  • if you are willing to learn more about the Charter and can devote several hours a week to helping with our e-mails (we’ve received close to 20,200 since January) and other work, please contact us.
  • if you can donate to the Charter in any amount, we need your assistance.
  • If you can host a Charter Salon to introduce the Charter for Compassion to friends, family and colleagues, please let us know. This is not only a way to get people to know about the Charter but a way to broaden our base of support.

Thank you for your continued involvement and help.

New Partners

Below is a list of new Charter partners registered since August 1. Learn more about each by clicking on the name of the organization.

  1. Academy of Mindful Teaching (Leusden, Netherlands)
  2. Bureau Nevejan and Mindful Compassion Amsterdam (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
  3. Catalyst: The Change Agent (Karachi, Pakistan)
  4. Columbia Presbyterian Church (Decature, GA, USA)
  5. The Crow Collection of Asian Art (Dallas, TX, USA)
  6. Doule Me (Elmsford, NY, USA)
  7. Ekam Foundation (Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India)
  8. Friendship United Nepal—FUN (Kathmandu, Nepal)
  9. Global Peace Initiative 2nd World Parliament on Spirituality (Salt Lake City, UT, USA)
  10. The Mindful Collective (Brisbane, Australia)
  11. Salaam-Shalom-Love (Columbia Heights, MN, USA
  12. We, the World (New York, NY, USA)

Join the Charter for Compassion in Monterrey, Mexico: October October 21-23

The Charter will be sponsoring a special workshop at the 8th Annual Human Values Conference in Monterrey for the second year. Encuentro Mundial de Valores (Human Values Conference) is heading the State of Nuevo Leon’s Compassionate Initiative. At this year’s conference we will be welcoming four additional Mexican cities to the Charter and attendees will be able to participate in a community building workshop with their Mexican colleagues. Visit the conference site to learn more and to register.

New Publications from Charter Partners

The Summer Issue of the Compassion Anthology includes compassion-based works of visual art, essays, stories, poems and video. We are interested in works about compassion in all its meanings, such as: kindness, courage, healing, forgiveness, mercy, hope, sacrifice, social justice, education, and empathy in human and/or animal interactions as well as environmental conservation (including nature writing) and interfaith dialogue. Click here to read the on-line issue.

Reflective Structured Dialogue: A Dialogical Guide to Peace-building: This 76-page interfaith dialogue guide blends Scripture (Islamic and Christian) with family systems theory to offer specific guidelines, techniques and practices that can help bridge religious, ethnic and other kinds of identity divides. Click here to view or download.

New Pages to the Website

New additions to the following Participating City pages: Colombo, Sri Lanka, Lacy, WA, Los Angeles, USA and Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Invitation to Utah’s Compassionate Citizen Summit, November 12, locally and live streamed: An event to model how to bridge political and other divides after a challenging political season and to come together civilly, compassionately, collaboratively and inclusively in Utah and America. This includes how to model civil dialogue and creative problem solving in Utah and hence to lay the groundwork in Utah in 2017 and elsewhere for more progress to be made on identified issues and possible solutions. And perhaps most importantly, to begin revitalizing the American Spirit and giving America a fresh start.

Important Message from the Healthcare Leadership School from Stephanie Barnett

Although the application phase for this year’s Healthcare Leadership School has officially closed, I’m aware that some of you might still be "recruiting" potential candidates. I’ve been granted 6 additional slots for any referrals from a US-based Compassionate City. Please have anyone who is interested and may have missed the deadline communicate with me directly. So far, we have accepted 38 international participants, 6 Kentucky-based participants and 3 other US-based professionals (with 8 more applications currently under review). The response has been amazing and … truly … the stories contained in the applications are jaw-dropping inspiring! Please encourage the next generation of compassion heroes in YOUR compassionate city to be a part of this life- and profession-changing experience!

If your city cannot send a representative but wish to support a student who has expressed financial need, we’d love to hear from you! Please call (502.550.3533) or email (Stephanie@choose-well.org) if you have questions, comments or opportunities for support! Check out the video "What is the Healthcare Leadership School?".

Charter for Compassion Conference Calls

Below is a listing of our upcoming conference calls. Just click on the date and name of the call to register. All calls are listed with a Pacfic Daylight Time (PDT) starting time.

Watch for our next week’s education newsletter: How Fast Can You Run?

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Charter for Compassion
PO Box 10787
Bainbridge Island, WA 98110
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