Contemplative Community Building

I returned to school in 2021 to create a deep and specialized skillset to navigate the coming chaos we are all facing. Through wisdom traditions, in my case Tantra Yoga and Tibetan Buddhism, I am cultivating the necessary contemplative trainings needed to process an unstable reality with a sense of grounding and with some (and on certain days most) of my mental health intact. I had no clear vision of how I would deploy these skills to help my fellow humans do the same, but I knew I’d find a few answers along my academic journey.

This summer was a catalyst for me on several levels.

  • I fell deep into the ImpactDAO space and discovered my Ride or Die Regens at JournoDAO. I became a founding member and we bust our asses daily to try and restore sustainability and sanity to the news industry.

  • The climate crisis accelerated and so did the abject corruption of the political systems I live under here in America.

  • I lost my human rights as a woman at the hands of religious fundamentalists who run the judicial branch of my country. Watching the world physically crumble at the same time as the rights over my own body was a core-shattering reality that I am still processing.

  • I realized the urgency to spread contemplative practices throughout as many communities as possible using whatever means available.

  • At MCON2, I saw a pattern in all of the speakers at the event— people had built technological communities without a clear understanding or ability to manage the humans within those communities. I understood just how valuable my community building skills in web3, cultivated by herding the cats in Discord for blockchain devs since 2017, were at this juncture in time.

On a recent spiritual retreat for school, I participated in council meetings and a medicine walk deep in the canyons of Colorado. The intention I set during that weekend was to become a conduit for power and resources to empower changemakers.

Sounds wonderful on paper, but what does that actually mean?

Given the points above and my academic studies, I came up with a project I believe is necessary to ensure the mental health and holistic, human-first community structures we all need to both implement powerful change in the ImpactDAO ecosystem and also help our builders maintain their mental health as they work to change the world while also watching it crumble around them.

The mental impacts of the cognitive dissonance necessary to simultaneously build regenerative systems to save a sliver of our humanity while also knowing the destruction is resting just on the horizon can not be underestimated. We barely have language to understand this reality, let alone process it in our own bodies. Those of us working to enact change must also recognize the toll of holding the duality of regeneration and destruction at the same time and not crumble under the pressure. The best way, that I’ve discovered, to do this is two-fold; gather a strong group of humans you will ride or die with to implement your shared mission and create a deep and powerful contemplative process to deploy on the daily. The second point allows you to hold space for your fellow builders and to also build beyond your core group and touch the lives of many with your mission.

I’ve decided to build a project that will serve as a guidebook for Contemplative Community Building and will be a public good, accessible to any and all community builders. The project will start with 15 lessons designed to help builders and communities bake contemplative practices into their communities or introduce these concepts into existing organizations. Each lesson will hold a combination of articles, audio readings, interviews, worksheets and, if applicable, videos designed to help someone understand, explore and create a contemplative practice. The hopes of such a practice is to create the mental balance and space necessary to continue the challenging work of change.

If you’re interested in supporting such a project, please click below and head over to the supporter or fan NFTs, built on Unlock Protocol, that will help fund this project and give you access to special perks as a supporter. Any funds raised beyond the core sponsorship mentioned below will help elevate the production level of the project and will be used to hire producers and editors to help the project grow beyond just my interpretation.

I’m also in negotiations now with an amazing organization of community builders that will (fingers crossed) be the core sponsor of this project and will make the mission of bringing more holistic practices into our communities a reality.

Ps— This is NOT a DAO. ;) It’s just a public goods resource for us all to leverage to create healthier communities to propel our various missions forward.

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