“Can you get indigestion from taking people into your heart?”

The whole of my life
is summed up in these three phrases:
I used to be raw
Then I was cooked
I am on fire.

– Rumi


In a recent blog post, Don’t Leave Me Raw, Omid Safi discusses the “wisdom of chickpeas” through an ancient tale by Rumi, a thirteenth century Persian poet, jurist, Islamic scholar, theologian, and Sufi mystic. Safi opens his blog article with a rather entertaining question: “Can you get indigestion from taking people into your heart?”

The Midwest Book Review on “New Slow City”

Thanks to the Midwest Book Review for these words on New Slow City:

“An extraordinary story deftly told from first page to last, ‘New Slow City: Living Simply in the World’s Fastest City’ is an inherently fascinating and informative read. Exceptionally well written and presented, ‘New Slow City’ is especially recommended to the attention of anyone who has ever felt the urge to simplify their life by engaging in a ‘less is more’ personal style. Certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community library collections.”

Michael J. Carson

To See and Be Seen

Guest post by student from School of International Training (SIT) Bolivia program

How hard is it to be truly, vulnerably seen? What courage does it take to let someone see your strengths and weaknesses, despairs and joys, pain and wellbeing? What compassion does it take to look someone in the eye and say, “It’s okay. I see your pain. I feel your pain, but let’s not move to hide it, to fade it, or to fix it. Let’s just stand here and be”?

Buzz, buzz, buzz

A Glimpse of Chakana in Parque Pipiripi

Guest post by student from School of International Training (SIT) Bolivia program

Last month at the Parque Urbano (Urban Park) in La Paz, the second largest metropolis of Bolivia, the first ever Cumbre Internacional de la Espiritualidad de los Pueblos Indígenas del Continente Abya Yala (International Summit of Spirituality of Indigenous Peoples from the American Continents) took place. The two-day event (May 2-3, 2015), hosted hundreds of spiritual leaders, indigenous rights activists, politicians, and policy makers from across the Americas. The purpose? To consolidate indigenous spiritual practices and to exchange ideas on public policies for the Plurinational State of Bolivia (among other countries in Abya Yala), to vivir bien, or live well, during the time of the Pachakuti, the indigenous-campesinoorginario concept of a cosmic revolution—also known as the “Great Turning,” or the Sustainability Revolution of the 21st century.

The Durham Buzz and the “New Slow”

The New Slow City  Book Tour has gotten off to a great start – first in the Twin Cities and now back in North Carolina, home of the 12 x 12 off-the-grid home I wrote about in my last book. Asheville and Chapel Hill have welcomed me warmly for talks at their fantastic independent bookstores – Malaprops and Flyleaf, respectively.

Durham has done a stupendous job – they will be welcoming me for an event tomorrow, Monday at Regulator Bookshop at 7pm. Durham’s Clarion Content also featured me in one of their articles about bringing the message of a balanced joy-to-stuff ratio to Durham. How to bring the lessons I learned in New York City to the busy life in Durham? See more and read the article here.

Winner of Solstice “Twelve by Twelve” Book Giveaway

Thanks to everyone who responded to the summer solstice question on the William Powers Books Facebook page. There were so many wonderful responses to the question: “As summer begins, what feels inspiring or hopeful to you today?”

As promised, I chose one comment at random. And the winner is (drumroll please!)….

Britton Tuck, a student in Georgia, USA. She wrote: “What inspires me is seeing my fellow Earthship Biotecture Academy students make great strides in the way of promoting Earthship/off-grid living. I’m so inspired by these individuals and their passion to spread the word about how to lead a self-sustainable lifestyle!”

Forget Shorter Showers

Forget Shorter Showers

Why personal change does not equal political change

by Derrick Jensen

From Orion magazine

WOULD ANY SANE PERSON think dumpster diving would have stopped Hitler, or that composting would have ended slavery or brought about the eight-hour workday, or that chopping wood and carrying water would have gotten people out of Tsarist prisons, or that dancing naked around a fire would have helped put in place the Voting Rights Act of 1957 or the Civil Rights Act of 1964? Then why now, with all the world at stake, do so many people retreat into these entirely personal “solutions”?

Keystone Fight Uniting Tea Partiers With Environmentalists

If you’re following the Keystone pipeline battle, you’ll find this development interesting! -Bill

In Washington, DC, the fight over the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline mostly divides common enemies: Republicans and Democrats; environmentalists and fossil fuel interests; big business and the federal bureaucracy.

But though the project exists in a state of suspended animation, TransCanada — the company that wants to connect the tar sands in Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico — is preparing to build anyhow. In particular, on the portion of the pipeline that would link Nebraska to Texas, TransCanada has threatened to use disputed eminent domain powers to condemn privately held land, over the owners’ objections. And that’s creating unusual allies — Occupiers, Tea Partiers, environmentalists, individualists — united to stop TransCanada from threatening water supplies, ancient artifacts, and people’s basic property rights.