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State of Emergence is a new podcast about how we respond to the urgency of our world crises & catalyze human transformation. Hosted by @TerryPatten.

Aug 3, 2020

Monastic, community leader, and host of the Emerge podcast Daniel Thorson joins Terry for a tender, open-hearted, and spacious inquiry into what really matters in this vulnerable and sacred collective moment. 

Recently, Daniel became an overnight focus of media attention during the beginning of the pandemic after he emerged from a long silent retreat and tweeted, “I'm back from 75 days in silence. Did I miss anything?” His unique experience and insights were featured by the New York Times and many other media outlets from around the world. Interestingly, his retreat intensified his discernment and sensitivity. He became acutely aware that this newfound fame was a double-edged sword. So we discussed what was arising — especially how we often suffer intensified public attention (in spite of our cultural preoccupation with fame and status). So this is a conversation on the threshold — Daniel was recognizing that a 2-3 year journey into intellectual sensemaking on his Emerge podcast had “crystalized”, and his inquiry had led him to more dedicated monastic practice and curiosity about how to love and care for the people around him.

Daniel Thorson lives and works at the Monastic Academy in Vermont, which trains and cultivates wise, powerful, and loving leaders for social and environmental peace. When working at the influential podcast Buddhist Geeks he became fascinated by how public conversations can catalyze cultural transformation. Later, he created and became host of the podcast Emerge: Making Sense of What’s Next. In previous incarnations, Daniel was an organizer with Occupy Wall Street (in NYC); helped start Boulder Flood Relief in 2013; and founded a mindfulness education company. 

Here are some of the questions we discuss in this episode: 

  • What did 75 days in silence during a global pandemic illuminate for Daniel about his — and our collective — way forward?
  • How can grief and acceptance open us to a life of service and creativity?
  • Is it possible to discover a way of being that inadvertently heals our world? Are there shifts so essential and diffuse that they suddenly “solve everything at once?”
  • In a world awash in so much information, how can we serve clarity, adding only what’s most essential? What are our essential conversations?

For more information on Daniel Thorson and Terry Patten, check out the following resources:

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