The LoveMore Movement is celebrating community, which means we are ultimately celebrating YOU. We are so excited that we have made it this far. The LoveMore Movement was merely an idea, a heartfelt impetus to celebrate change and love and generosity, to encourage forgiveness, compassion, and service through photography, writing, and action. The images I have taken thus far are all part of the larger picture: a book that you can hold in your hands, share and peruse time and time again. It is a ce...Read More »
The last several days has brought me to my knees. I literally have felt like my heart has been broken. It feels like a persistent sadness creeping through my bones, slathered in anger and frustration. It feels sticky.
And I am on the peripheral.
I am not the mother of Treyvon Martin, or Eric Garner’s widow, or Michael Brown’s mother. Instead, I am a white, Jewish woman. I am part of a marginalized culture, who is persistently under violent attack. That's not enough:
I have privilege.
The color of my skin affords me this privilege. The fact that I am not racially profiled in this country affords me privilege. The fact that I am not looked at with mistrust is a result of privilege. I also have a choice. I can use my privilege it for good or I can use it to get what I want, when I want, whenever I can. I could abuse it. But the truth is, I didn't earn this privilege.
I am not better than anyone.
I have raised my son with this world view, one where he understands that he has privilege but that this privilege doesn't make him better. We talk about this all the time. It's part of our norm. As a young ,white man, this awareness starts the conversation of change so he hopefully doesn’t perpetuate the problem of misused, white privilege. I want to teach my son to go forth with integrity--To be the Atticus Finch of his times. Truth is, se’s been to protest after protest and learned to use his voice. He embraces change. I am grateful.
Today, when I picked my 8th grade son and his friend up from school, they exuded excitement. Their school staged a protest today. They were lying down on the floor, chanting “I Can’t Breathe” and “No Justice, No Peace.” I'm talking about 6th, 7th, and 8th graders. They were all there by choice. What began as a history class drawing attention to the injustice of the recent verdict surrounding Eric Garner’s murder, ultimately became a school-wide protest--A school-wide protest at a MIDDLE SCHOOL. HELL YES!
Young voices, burgeoning awareness, unmitigated compassion and a sense of justice is just part this picture. Things need to change. Things have to change. Because what we have is an epidemic of racially charged violence. We have ignorance fueled by fear, fueled by lack of training, fueled by a lack of awareness. We have men and women who go out day and night with the purported impetus to protect and to serve, yet they have been trained to shoot to kill and to completely empty their guns. They just want to go home--alive.
Our young men and women of color just want to go home too. And they want to go home alive. They don't want a feature in the evening news, or a stint on the icy cold coroner's table. That's not home. They want to be seen and heard and valued as human beings. They have families who love them. Truth: An officer’s family isn’t more important than the families of Trayvon, Eric, and Michael.
So, thank you to the City School for nurturing these young voices and for encouraging them to take action. Social action is powerful. We can’t change things on our own. We need to do it together. Knowing that this little school houses these giant voices gives me hope. It warms my broken heart.
Keep raising your voices. Keep gathering and protesting and making noise. Do it with compassion, and love and kindness, and don't give up. Black Lives Matter.
"I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you're licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what." -- Atticus Finch (To Kill a Mockingbird)
LoveMore Movement Posse: It has been a real honor and privilege to be the community sponsor for Street Yoga's Los Angles Teacher Training. I took the training last year and was really inspired. It's wonderful to be able to share the wisdom and practice with others, to spread the word, and to expand our wings as teachers and students. Frankly, we are always students, no matter how long we teach. But I digress. In honor of Street Yoga and the work they do, we would like to be able t...Read More »
I am so excited to share this! August is my birthday month and we are making lots of changes here at the LoveMore Movement hub. For starters, we have some new swag: Limited Edition LoveMore Patches that will support the AMAZING organization The Pink Ink Fund founded by the inspiring Amy Black. These Limited Edition 3" iron-on LoveMore Patches made to fit on the things you wear the most. Patch it up! old school. I know I'm putting one on my meditation cushion. Where will you put yours? Here's a ...Read More »
We are making some changes at the LoveMore Movement hub, and we think you'll totally dig 'em! Instead of donating a percentage of each t-shirt sale, we will be donating a flat amount: Buy a t-shirt, and we will donate $5! That's a little more than 10% and we feel really freaking good about it. We are not a fashion line, but we love a good tee and we want you to be able to rock something you're proud of. It's more important for us to give back to others than anything else. That said we want to br...Read More »
The LoveMore Movement has always intended to be in partnership with organizations who doing the shadow work we often speak of and encourage. It takes great courage and a high level of self-care and self-regulation to choose to lean toward difficulty, but that is ultimately what we need to do in order to effect positive change in underserved communities and to anyone who suffers. Street Yoga is one of the organizations we love that does this type of work day in and day out, providing yoga to yout...Read More »
Some days, the process of loving more has zero to do with extending a hand outward: it has everything to do with placing a hand on your heart. The LoveMore Movement encourages you to take care of yourself before you take care of others. We encourage you to help build a community that will lead by example. Some days, we may fall apart. And that's ok. Some days, we may stand really tall. That's ok too. Tonight, I went to meditation feeling like my nervous system was completely askew.Tonight, when ...Read More »
I don’t know how not to be an activist. I don't know how not to be the truth in the shadow of a lie. I just don't know any other way. When I was a kid, I was considered an upstart. I always pointed out the truth when it was inconvenient to do so. For some reason, my brain was wired for reality, wired for truth, wired to seek knowledge and wired for compassion. When I was 5, and my uncle took me to Disneyland for the first time, I loudly exclaimed, "This is all a lie!" He was dumbfounded and emb...Read More »
Perhaps growing up needing has made me appreciate what I have in a way that I otherwise might not. Perhaps it is remembering the food stamp lines, eyes cast down in shame, embarrassment, and anger that make me view what I have with such gratitude. Perhaps it was being teased because I was different that makes me love the way I do. Perhaps it was surviving my own darkness, emerging into light that has made me desirous of holding a lantern for others. Each day, I wake hungry for light, for the air against my skin, the feel of my breath coaxing its way through my body. I wake grateful that I am alive and capable. I wonder whom I will meet, whom I will speak to, who will inspire me. I wonder.
This adventure of creating the LoveMore Movement has been a day-to-day meandering to my personal edge. My shyness (Yeah, I know. Me, shy? But it's true! I swear. Ask my bestie, she'll tell you stories.) is quickly being chucked to the side. I finally woke up, grabbed hold of a dream and started to make it a reality. But you know what? Grabbing hold of it is one thing, making it a reality is some scary shit. Really scary. Because even though I wake up curious and full of wonder, there is also some fear.
Old Navy is selling a shirt that says "Love More" across the chest; it costs 10 bucks. It's just a slogan, some spiritual commodification. And there's us: we are making shirts that say "LoveMore" on the sleeve in a beautiful heart that my friend Drew designed, and LoveMore Movement across the chest. They'll be a little more than Old Navy, at 35-40 bucks, but there is a difference: we are donating 10% to organizations that are urgently working toward things like: ending violence toward women (VDay); using the power of yoga to "inspire conscious, sustainable activism and ignite grass roots social change" (Off the Mat, Into the World), and an organization committed to social justice, bringing meditation into prisons, feeding the homeless, and working to help those suffering from addiction (Against the Stream).
So why the fear? Perhaps because venturing into the world of "how much can we get for less" is daunting. But I have to remind myself of this: I started the LoveMore Movement because I am grateful. I started the LoveMore Movement because I need to give back. I remember what it was like in the dark. I remember what it was like to feel hopeless. So, I go back to the beginning and remember:
Each day, I wake hungry for light, for the air against my skin, the feel of my breath coaxing its way through my body. I wake grateful that I am alive and capable. I wonder whom I will meet, whom I will speak to, who will inspire me. I wonder.
Starting the LoveMore Movement was an idea that has been fed by overwhelming support and encouragement from our community. Clearly, we struck a nerve, one that need to be held in compassion and light. This week, we finally leapt so LoveMore could soar on its own, taking flight and spreading its wings. When I talk about raising kids, I always say that we as parents need to foster, in our children, the development of roots and wings. We approached LoveMore in the same way.
We want to extend a heartfelt thank you to the inimitable net of love and support from all of you. Our Facebook page is growing in leaps and bounds and that wouldn't be happening without community. You can follow it here if you haven't done so already. We are also on Twitter and Instagram and I encourage you to follow us there, join the movement and spread the word!
Use the hashtags #LoveMore and #LoveMoreMovement; we will see it, we will tweet you and repost you, so don't be shy!!!
In the coming month, new stickers and our long-awaiting tee-shirts will drop! It's all coming together! We are even in contact with a self-publishing house trying to sort out the book details!!!
Lots of love,
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