“We are here to awaken from the illusion of our separateness.”
Thich Nhat Hanh
There was a segment on the PBS news last night about two young men, Sam Polk and David Foster, who climbed to the top of the Wall Street ladder. By the age of thirty, they were millionaires and well on their way to becoming billionaires. What they found at the top was a distinct feeling of emptiness; the sense that their achievement had gained them only wealth. They realized that wasn't enough. They wanted to do something more with their lives, so they decided on a project to get good affordable food into neighborhoods considered “food deserts.” They moved out to Los Angeles, and began a company called Everytable. They used their Wall Street connections to recruit both money and chefs to prepare food that is nutritious, delicious and affordable. In poor neighborhoods, it costs less than fast-food, and in up-scale neighborhoods, it costs a little more, but not significantly more, and all that is left over at the end of the day goes to homeless shelters. They also founded Groceryships, that brings affordable produce to inner-city neighborhoods, and offers six-month scholarships to teach people how to cook that food and in the process, connect with their neighbors.
Polk and Foster woke up to the the fact that they could make all the money in the world, but it would not satisfy their souls. Where they've found that satisfaction is in doing something that connects their skills and talents with the needs of the others. Their new endeavor uses their privilege, their influence, and their business experience to bring something good to people who might otherwise not have it. They have awoken to the understanding that we are not separate, and that we fulfill our life's purpose by being in relationship with others and the earth.
In the Spirit,