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Summer of Lovingkindness Invitational

Representing the many layers of love and lovingkindness present in the world around us

layers of lovingkindness ©2010 Mahala Mazerov

Calling all practical idealists, hidden mystics, and people of good heart!

Please join me for 2 months of creative focus on love and lovingkindness.

Starting today, (July 1st) through August 31st, I invite you to share your words, art, wisdom, and stories — your questions, contemplations and experiences — in the Summer of Lovingkindness Invitational, #SOLI for short.

Take part in whatever way works for you.

[update: Some of you have voiced concern that you're afraid you won't be able to keep up with the project. I want to assure you this is not a post-a-day or even a post-a-week project. The idea is to learn to bring lovingkindness into you awareness more frequently than you do now, and to share some of your experience with the rest of us in your creative form of choice.]

You can join in as frequently or infrequently as you like.

You can post on your blog. Write twitter poetry. Fill FaceBook. Wherever you show up on the internet is the place to publish.

Here’s why:

One thing I hear all the time is how much people struggle to make time for spiritual practice. I understand. I’m a huge admirer of people who spend hours in traditional meditation, and still my own practice time falls short of what I’d like it to be. At least, it did until I started redefining what I meant by practice.

When my definition included expressions of lovingkindness, compassion and other qualities throughout my day, the tug of war for practice time came to an end. It turns out, you can practice almost constantly.

In your tradition you may have another name for it, maybe you don’t call it lovingkindness. But you still have something that expresses the same fundamental quality and I would be thrilled to learn about it from you. Maybe you don’t even have a “tradition,” a path you identify with or practices you follow. Even so, you can bring the essence of love into every aspect of life as you live it.

Which brings me to another reason to join in:

Positive change. In 1996, Tibetan monks from the Dalai Lama’s monastery sent blessings over cyberspace.  Tibetan Buddhism views space as an absence of obstruction. That absence, whether in our minds or in cyberspace creates potential for something new to arise. The nature of what arises, negative or positive, harmful or beneficial, depends on the motivation of the one creates or uses it.

Participating in this project will create a result. Possibly subtle, possibly life-changing, but a positive result nonetheless. Even if you create only a few  #SOLI offerings between now and August 31st, your intention to bring more lovingkindness to the world will make a difference.

This positive result won’t only be for you. The fact we’re turning our hearts and minds in the same direction supports us all and moves outward in unexpected dimensions. There’s no way to predict what will happen. No way to predict what you’ll receive. No way to know who will find your #SOLI blog post when they most need a dose of lovingkindness.

That’s why I want you to join in, instead of me just blogging about loving-kindness by myself for 2 months.

Creating Space

My intention is to invite. To create a space for your heart and your insights, for things positive and unexpected. To that end, I hope you’ll think of me as someone who has simply built the campfire, in hopes that you will gather around, share your stories and send them lovingly across cyberspace.

Please join in. Spread the word. Jump into the fray. Let me know what can I do to make this a wonderful experience for you.  Let me know, too, if you have ideas or gifts you’d like to add to the #SOLI experience.

Moment of truth

Are you in?

Take part in whatever way works for you. This community is open to prolific and slow bloggers (artists, identifier of choice) everywhere. If you’ve got love in your heart or if you’re afraid you’ve misplaced it in the chaos of daily life, we welcome you!

Please sign the list below which includes a link to point us to your #SOLI offerings.

Next up I’ll have a list of questions and writing prompts to get your ideas flowing. But for now thanks for reading this far, and special thanks and blessings for the first 5 people who sign up (so my heart can start beating again.)

[update: I'm hearing "I'm in" from a number of you, but not seeing your name on the link list below. It's OK not to sign up if it feels too public or like it puts to much pressure on you to participate. But it's probably the key way to show up as a like-minded person so we all can find and get to know you. Just a thought.]

20 Responses to Summer of Lovingkindness Invitational
  1. Magpie
    July 1, 2010 | 6:32 pm

    What a beautiful idea!

    • Mahala Mazerov
      July 1, 2010 | 6:45 pm

      Is it okay to say “I could kiss you!” ?

  2. elizabeth
    July 1, 2010 | 6:48 pm

    This is such a beautiful idea. I would love to join in, even if I don’t post about it everyday.
    elizabeth´s last blog ..antiqueMy ComLuv Profile

    • Mahala Mazerov
      July 1, 2010 | 6:53 pm

      Elizabeth, you’re welcome any and every time you like.

      I’m in the “slow blogger” mold, myself, which is part of why I wanted to create this in whatever form people would choose to participate.

      BTW, can I give you a big kiss, too? Tapping that publish button was a little scary on this one.

  3. Heidi
    July 1, 2010 | 6:56 pm

    What a beautiful idea! I’d be honored to participate, especially since it sounds like I won’t be the only one posting on a less-than-daily basis ;)

    Thank you for inspiring me to be more mindful of my lovingkindness, and for helping me to expand my definition of spiritual practice :)
    Heidi´s last blog ..Power Napping 20My ComLuv Profile

    • Mahala Mazerov
      July 1, 2010 | 7:38 pm

      Heidi, even I am posting on a far-less-than-daily basis. That was kind of the point, to write together but not need to overextend ourselves. It just seems a little crazy in the “pursuit” of lovingkindness.

      We’ll all inspire one another. Happy to have you join in.

  4. Erin
    July 1, 2010 | 7:18 pm

    What a gorgeous idea. I’ll happily join in with all of you fine folk around the camp fire. (Although for me it is more WOLI- tis chilly down here!)
    Erin´s last blog ..Journal Prompt 01- Mmmhmm- I love choc-mint brussels sproutsMy ComLuv Profile

    • Mahala Mazerov
      July 1, 2010 | 7:40 pm

      WOLI. I love it. Where are you? It’s chilly here in upstate New York, but my computer widget says we’ll be in the 90s in a few days. I much prefer the campfire. And you sitting ’round it with me.

  5. Melynda
    July 1, 2010 | 7:37 pm

    I’ve always regretted being too little to really enjoy the Summer of Love–but the Summer of Lovingkindess is way, way cooler. I’m so excited to be a part of this! Hurrah!
    Melynda´s last blog ..Stupid Bundt PanMy ComLuv Profile

    • Mahala Mazerov
      July 1, 2010 | 7:44 pm

      Me, too. In fact, originally this was going to be the Summer of Love Invitational. But I thought that might give the wrong impression. Blushing Buddhas everywhere.

      Yay for being part of this! Do you think you’ll post on your blog? If yes, add your name to the link list above so people can find you.

  6. RobynElfie
    July 1, 2010 | 9:48 pm

    I’ve never done anything like this, but it calls to me so I will try. At least I will read each day, and at best I will get brave enough to write. I can hardly wait to meet my new friends :)

    • Mahala Mazerov
      July 1, 2010 | 10:49 pm

      It’s a safe and gentle space, and I think we can count on kind companions! I’ll be happy for you if you get brave enough to write, but there’s no pressure.

  7. Suzanna
    July 2, 2010 | 6:08 pm

    I’m inspired to offer an excerpt from a little hidden page in the back of my book, Little Shifts. I think a lot of people miss this page. I think there’s a reason. It begins,
    I Double Dare You
    See yourself sitting in an empty room. From some corner a voice speaks to you. Over and over, you hear the same words: “All is forgiven.”
    Put this book down and walk to the kitchen. Pour a glass of water and drink it. Continue the words in your mind as you swallow, like a gentle counting. All is forgiven, all is forgiven. Keep hearing it until you feel a physical shift.
    Remember this when you fill a glass for yourself or your beloveds. Allow it to go on in the background for hours, for days, forever.
    I call this a pure liquid blessing.
    While I am not at all sure that anything needs to be forgiven, there is something incredibly powerful about this little exercise. People have told me they have done it with skepticism, yet felt cooling and balance and light come in as they let the words repeat.
    I know it came from lovingkindness, so here it is.
    Suzanna´s last blog ..BABS June 30th OverviewMy ComLuv Profile

  8. Mahala Mazerov
    July 3, 2010 | 6:00 pm

    Suzanna, this is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing it here. Just reading it, I can touch what a profound experience it would be to try this exercise. I think so many of us carry a level of unexpressed (even unconscious) guilt in our minds. What a blessing this process of yours provides.

  9. Ann
    July 5, 2010 | 6:26 pm

    Dear Mahala,
    Not only is this a lovely idea, it was the final nudge that pushed me into a real blog. I’ve done Notes on Facebook, and probably will still, but that’s a whole different thing. I eagerly await the next steps in this luscious experience.
    Ann´s last blog ..Scary ThingsMy ComLuv Profile

    • Mahala Mazerov
      July 5, 2010 | 7:51 pm

      Super happy to have you on board and delighted you accepted the final nudge Into the Fire. Love the colors and energy of you new blog. Excited for what will appear.

  10. unabashedly female · Love of Woman
    July 11, 2010 | 10:18 am

    [...] post is in response to The Summer of Love Invitational, where the lovely Mahala Mazerov has invited bloggers to write about loving kindness. SHARETHIS.addEntry({ title: "Love of Woman", url: [...]

  11. bookbird
    July 12, 2010 | 8:23 pm

    Yay! Great idea. You have sparked many people’s hearts with this one! I’m glad to be Number 16 on the list :)
    bookbird´s last blog ..summer of lovingkindness invitationalMy ComLuv Profile

  12. Mahala Mazerov
    July 14, 2010 | 6:25 pm

    Really happy to have you on board. Let’s keep the heart sparks flying!

  13. [...] All three posts are part of the Summer of Love Invitational, where the lovely Mahala Mazerov has invited bloggers to write about loving [...]

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