We (Amanda, Ren, Cedar, and the Board of Directors at Right Use of Power Institute) have been preparing for a fundraising campaign. You'll get an invitation within the next couple weeks. Fundraising has been lifting us from the day-to-day operations of a business to the level of vision.
Why should you consider supporting us financially? From the largest perspective, because as many people as possible need to understand power as the ability to have influence and then learn the skills, self-awareness and sensitivity to use their power with both strength and heart.
Our fundraising goals are:
Continued publication of the monthly Newsletter, now reaching almost 1300 people
Support for our Guild Members--trained to teach right use of power program. This includes administrative support, personal contact, and extensive website resources including curriculum, handouts, scripts for exercises
Development grants for creating new programs. For example: a curriculum for graduate programs in psychology and social work that will include RUP materials.
The Pledge. Take a minute to look at the Right Use of Power Pledge. - Make your own pledge to use your power wisely and well. Reading time 1 minute
Earn Continuing Education Credits from home!
Take this e-course and increase your ability to be pro-active in using your power well, by learning about and self-reflecting on some of the pit-falls and challenges that people with good intentions face in the maze of working with relationships with power differences. Take a look at the importance of knowing your limitations as well as your strengths, learn about four barriers to right use of power, and identify your growing edges.
Reminder to Guild Members that you can re-take the training(s) for 50% discount at any time! Great way to update your skills and increase your confidence. Just register and make the $100 deposit at cedarbarstow.com
Teacher of the Month
Barbara Drummond is a Hakomi trained- Certified Advanced Rolfer, who uses The Right Use of Power to help identify when client's structural parts are having power struggles. She lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is a Boundary? An article by Barbara Drummond
Everyone knows what a boundary is. It’s a line that divides one state from another; or it’s what one uses to control unwanted behaviors. A person might say, “That kid needs some limits.” The trouble is, when you tell a child not to eat the cookie because dinner is in 15 minutes that does not always stop the behavior. And there are no lines between the states when you see them from an airplane. These boundaries are imaginary (or symbolic, if you prefer). We use them to make a complex world more manageable. And all of us behave as if when we draw a line, we actually create separation. But a boundary is not a way to control the behavior of others. It is simply a place for people to meet.
When public health authorities talk about an epidemic, they are referring to a disease that can spread rapidly throughout a population, like the flu or tuberculosis.
But researchers are increasingly finding the term useful in understanding another destructive, and distinctly American, phenomenon — mass incarceration. This four-decade binge poses one of the greatest public health challenges of modern times, concludes a new report released last week by the Vera Institute of Justice.
For many obvious reasons, people in prison are among the unhealthiest members of society. Most come from impoverished communities where chronic and infectious diseases, drug abuse and other physical and mental stressors are present at much higher rates than in the general population. Health care in those communities also tends to be poor or nonexistent.
As a part of our fundraising campaign we wanted to give everyone a chance to sign a pledge to use their power wisely and well. Everyone who donates (any amount) will receive this beautiful pledge card. (We have other gifts available as well. Check them out on our fundraising page.).
Here is the pledge:
I pledge to use my personal and professional power with strength and heart. I will endeavor to stay connected, accountable, sensitive and skillful. I know that my right uses of power will help prevent and repair harm, resolve conflict and promote well being.
When I was seven years old, Anna Cox became my best friend. We looked alike, our families were alike, our natures were similar. Our teacher sometimes couldn't tell us apart. Now, at 70 we are still dear friends. About 25 years ago, each of us found our life purpose, I with developing right use of power as the heart of ethics, Anna in working with offering Buddhist meditation and teachings to prisoners, through her organization: Compassion Works for All. (www.compassionworksforall.org).
Recently, Compassion Works for All was the recipient of much-needed funds through a fundraising drive called Arkansas Gives. As significant prison reform issues rise to national attention these days, I want to use this RUPI issue to give special honor to Anna for her years and years of compassionate, skillful, and effective service to prisoners through her newsletters and teachings. Her website is a rich source of stories and video teachings for both children and adults. Here's a very touching story about a gratefulness meditation that Anna did with some prisoners in Little Rock.
Welcome to another meditation session down at the prison this month. Many of us, the other 'free world' folks and I, and our Compassion Works for All members, had been all caught up in politics this month. Our state legislature is in session. We have all been advocating for numerous bills but most specifically those for prison reform. As we talk to those in decision-making positions, our efforts have been to 'humanize' the people in prison. We want to impress on those with power that those we advocate for are people. I tell them that you are people trying to grow and heal. I stress that you are quite remarkable. You have become the change agents from within the prisons, helping each other, and especially helping the young gang members who need to grow up and who need mentors and father figures. It is the inmates who have found healing that offer the most effective rehabilitation in prison. I want you to be seen as valued community members. Instead, with all of our efforts, you are often swept down a black hole and disposed of without a thought.
Stepping Up: Wholeness Ethics for Prisoners and Those Who Care About Them
by Troy Chapman
Note: This book is written by a prisoner currently living his 34th year behind bars.
Men and women in prison are seen by society as problems and burdens. This book begins with a different premise: that you can be a solution, not only in the world but in your own life as well. It’s about a way of living called wholeness ethics and it’s based on the simple truth that we find our own wholeness only in right relationship with the world. From the perspective of his 30 years behind bars, author Troy Chapman offers a roadmap for living this truth and moving toward soundness, well-being and the realization of one’s larger purpose. Distilling experience to four essential relationships — with yourself, others, the transcendent and nature — Chapman shows how to consider each in the light of ethical thinking and restore wholeness to each one. With down-to-earth examples and language, compassion and good humor, this book will help you "step up" to your true purpose, transform your life and your relationships, and help create a better world in the process.
Several years ago, I visited Provo, Utah — in the heart of what its residents call “Happy Valley” — to deliver a lecture at Brigham Young University. My gracious hosts sent me home with a prodigious amount of branded souvenirs: T-shirts, mugs — you name it. The Mormons are serious about product placement.
One particularly nice gift was a briefcase, with the university’s name emblazoned across the front. I needed a new briefcase, but the logo gave me pause because it felt a little like false advertising for a non-Mormon to carry it. Reassured by my wife that this was ridiculous, I loaded it up, and took it out on the road. In airports, I quickly noticed that people would look at my briefcase, and then look up at me. I could only assume that they were thinking, “I’ve never seen an aging hipster Mormon before.”