Friday, July 25, 2014

Search Inside Yourself At The Garrison Institute

What's It Like to Take Google's Mindfulness Training?

If you've ever wondered what it might be like to work for Google, or more specifically, to take the mindfulness training for Google employees, wittily known as "Search Inside Yourself: Mindfulness Based Emotional Intelligence," you'll soon have the chance. I helped develop SIY training along with Google's "Jolly Good Fellow" Chade Meng Tan, Google's "Chief Evangelist for Brand Marketing" Gopi Kallayil and Norman Fisher, former Abbott of the San Francisco Zen Center. Today, SIY is taking on a life of its own and increasingly being offered to the public beyond Google, and it's part of a broader trend towards workplace mindfulness that many innovative organizations are embracing. If it hasn't touched your organization yet, chances are it will before long.
(more at link below)

If you are in the NY area next weekend (Aug 1-3) and are interested you can attend this weekend workshop at the Garrison Institute. Mirabhai Bush and I will be leading it. Open to the public. 

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Nelson Mandela Tribute Hangout

In advance of Nelson Mandela’s funeral service on Sunday in Qunu, South Africa, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Reverend Mpho Tutu, the first female Irish president, Mary Robinson, and Sir Richard Branson came together for a digital eulogy using Google+ Hangouts.The conversation was hosted by +PeaceJam and +The Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, and moderated by CNN’s +Anderson Cooper. Fan questions were included that were shared using #NelsonTribute.

It was a pleasure to work on this event with a dedicated team of people drawn from multiple organizations including Google, The Dalai Lama's office and Desmond Tutu's office,

The event took place on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 7.30AM EST.

You can watch the conversations between these leaders and their personal memories of working with Nelson Mandela in this youtube video.

Monday, October 07, 2013

How to Float to the Top

This is an article I published today in the Huffington Post.....

When I am at a party, the question I dislike the most is "What do you do?" I often challenge the other person by responding, "I live joyously and consciously. That is what I do." But the very idea of living joyously and consciously is hard to grasp, let alone sustain, amid the demands of a high-tech workplace.
I get at least 200 or 300 emails a day, each one a data fragment asking me to respond in some fashion. My grandfather, who was a rice farmer in a small village in India, probably had to respond to four or five pieces of communication a day. For him, once the sun went down and the cattle were back in the shed, the rhythm of life changed. Not in Silicon Valley, where I work -- the rhythm is 24/7. There is no dial to turn down and say, "I want a bit less of it." So you have to accept that these are the conditions you are choosing to have, and then ask, "In the midst of this, how can I be peaceful, happy and content?"
The fact is that technology is like fire. Ever since we've discovered fire and known how to harness it, we've found it exceptionally useful. You can cook your food with fire, you can melt and blow glass with it. But if you misuse it, you can burn yourself or raze an entire city to the ground. Technology is a powerful tool -- but whether you use the tool to be productive or destructive, to live with peace or chaos, is up to you......
for the rest of the article you can click here to go to Huffington Post

Friday, February 22, 2013

Wisdom 2.0 Conference

I spoke at the Wisdom 2.0 conference in San Francisco  today on Envisioning the Conscious Corporation. It was attended by 1800 people. Speakers included Bradley Horowitz, VP of Product for Google+, Jeff Weiner CEO of Linked In, and Evan Williams, Co-founder of Twitter.

Here is my speech.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Beautiful Sand Mandala created by a group of Tibetan monks over 5 days and then destroyed to symbolize the impermanence of life Video

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Yoga practioners in America – Vote in the 2012 Presidential elections. It is your dharma. The yoga community in America has historically looked towards India and learnt from the teachers and wisdom traditions that originated there. It can draw some wisdom for the upcoming Presidential elections from the same source. India is the world's largest democracy. It has a population of 1.1 billion people and a voting age population of 738 million, according to the Institute for Democratic and Electoral Assistance. India is a young democracy that became independent from British rule in 1947 and a full-fledged republic with its own constitution in 1950. I was born and raised in India and was lucky to have been exposed to its democratic institutions and electoral processes from an early age. One of the facts I am very proud of is that every few years the whole country has gone to the polls and power has transferred to a different group of leaders elected by the people in a peaceful process. India with its huge and diverse electoral population and multi-party democracy presents a challenge of biblical proportions to conducting free and fair elections. It is the largest exercise in democratic franchise in the world, with more than 738 million people being given an equal opportunity to participate in the elections. Many of them are illiterate and have to be trained to vote for a symbol they can visually recognize (like a bicycle, an open palm or a lotus) rather than read the candidate’s name on the ballot. Electoral officers have to sometimes carry ballot boxes on horseback and by camel, crossing rivers on foot and trekking up mountain paths to make sure that even citizens living in remote areas have a chance to vote. Indians take their voting rights seriously. In the 2004 elections, 60% of the voting age population participated and in 2009, 56% used their vote. This is in contrast to the US, where 57% participated in 2008 and only 38% in 2010, according to the Institute for Democratic and Electoral Assistance. One of my vivid memories as a child is my great-grandmother Vattompadath Kalyani Kutty Amma participating in the elections. She was 92 at that time and had rarely traveled outside the the small rice farming hamlet called Chittilencheri in Kerala, Southern India, where our family is from. In my living memory she had never left the village or even gone more than two miles from our family home. And yet for the general elections that year, poll workers came and took her to the neighboring village school where she cast her vote. Every vote matters. She knew exactly whom she voted for by choosing the symbol of the candidate as she could not read and write - and she could tell me why she made that choice. Drawing from that electoral and democratic wisdom coming out of India, it is important that the yoga community in America actively participate in the upcoming elections. Why do I say this? It is your dharma. If you live in a democracy, voting is a right, a privilege and a duty. It is our dharma to participate in the democratic process and cast our votes. As a yoga practitioner you must do your dharma. It is very similar to how Krishna tells Arjuna in The Bhagavad Gita that it is the duty of a Kshtatriya, or a warrior, to go to battle and how everyone must do their duty. Personal Power from exercising your choice. You have a choice, so exercise it. Yogis live from a place of personal power. Personal power comes from knowing your values, showing integrity towards it, setting an intention, making a choice and exercising it. Speak your truth. The Yoga community has reached a tipping point with an estimated 20 million practitioners who spend an estimated $27 billion on yoga products. Plus an even larger amount of buying power across all the other products and services we consume. We make choices in conscious living. We choose consciously what we eat, how we take care of our environment, what we drive, what we consume, how we use energy, what resources we consume, and how we take care of our personal health. We need to speak our truth about these choices and how we respect other people’s choices. When we participate in the democratic process, in the political debate and make our electoral choices, we will be speaking our collective truth. So on Tuesday November 6, wake up early, and roll out your yoga mat or meditation cushion. Do your yoga or meditation practice. Get centered in your being. Feel a sense of gratitude that you have the gift of voting rights that someone else fought hard for. Go to the polling booth tall, erect and poised in your yogic energy. Exercise your personal power. Speak your truth. And receive the electoral results with a sense of grace, ease, calm, equanimity and peace. Just as yogis have always done in India. Published in Yoga Votes

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Burning Man

This is an extraordinary video about Burning Man which you will appreciate if you have been or if you are merely curious. This will explain why it is such a magical place and why Time Magazine chose Burning Man as one of "Civilizations 100 most important sites."

Video - In the Dust