Accelerate Global Consciousness at Wisdom 2.0

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Each year, the annual Wisdom 2.0 Conference brings together thought leaders, teachers and practitioners in the areas of mindfulness, technology, spirituality, education, creativity and sustainable business to have an open dialogue about how to connect, communicate and work in a more collaborative and humanitarian way.

Wisdom 2.0 Wisdom consciousness

The 2018 Wisdom 2.0 Stage in San Francisco

Accelerate Consciousness at Wisdom 2.0

Once again, we were a thrilled to be a media partner of Wisdom 2.0 again, because their vision is so aligned with ours. While there are amazing spiritual events around the world that largely draw those already in a mindful practice, yogis, teachers and leaders, there are very few events that bring together both spiritual and business leaders (with so much heart and purpose) all under one roof.

First, a few call outs to some of my favorite Wisdom 2.0 speakers and sessions: Dan Siegel addressed Neurobiology of Relationships and Community, Jack Kornfield took on the Power of Connection and Kindness in the Digital Age with Trudy Goodman, and Richard Strozzi-Heckler showed attendees how they can transform their lives through embodiment (we’re keen to try out some of their work later this Spring).

Wisdom 2.0 speakers

Wisdom 2.0 2018 speakers Mark Bertolini, Aetna, Byron Katie and Prince Ea – photo credit: Wisdom 2.0

consciousness Wisdom 2.0

Soren Gordhamer and Tarana Burke on the main stage

It wasn’t just spiritual and psychology leaders who hit the Wisdom 2.0 main stage.

Founder of the #MeToo Movement Tarana Burke did a fireside chat with Wisdom 2.0 founder Soren Gordhamer.

To say her presence was moving is an understatement — I applaud Tarana’s courage, resilience and commitment to moving this from a dialogue to a global shift in thinking.

Then of course, a few of my favorite spiritual peeps allowed me to be present with my thoughts and challenges, such as the ever so powerful Jon Kabat-Zinn, renowned for his work with mindfulness and medicine, the Soul of Money’s Lynne Twist, who was on our TEDxBerkeley stage last year (LOVE her work, her thinking and her book) and the quiet presence of Roshi Joan Halifax made us just that: PRESENT.

Wisdom 2.0 consciousness spiritual speakers

Roshi Joan Halifax in a Q&A session at Wisdom 2.0

Halifax says, “Standing at the edge is often where we find ourselves and bravely but serenely, we explored how to find freedom where fear and courage meet.”

Goldie Hawn showed up to alert us to her work with educational programs and how they are changing the way we think about learning (think brain breaks and meditation).

Wisdom 2.0 consciousness events

Goldie Hawn in a small Q&A session with attendees — above and below.

Goldie Hawn Wisdom 2.0

I met Qigong master Mingtong Gu for the first time six or so years ago at the SAND Conference, so was thrilled to see him lead sessions at Wisdom 2.0 both on the main stage and in what they refer to as the Practice Room. Be sure to read my write-up on an amazing Qigong workshop he led with Debra Chamberlin-Taylor at Spirit Rock this Spring.

Wisdom 2.0 spiritual teachers

Qitgong Master Mingtong Gu and Renee Blodgett at Wisdom 2.0

Amy Blankson addressed the future of happiness and how to live mindfully in the digital era and Michelle Scheidt was bold enough to take on spirituality and religion, especially amidst so many technologist and entrepreneurs.

Elle Luna and Susie Herrick took us on a journey to harness the feminine voice and power, which has been exploding lately and not just because of the #MeToo Movement. It’s the divine feminine “time” so to speak and Goddess energy is beautifully evolving and transforming how we look at family, social and business life. The time is now.

I didn’t see all of Sharon Salzberg — although I’m new to her work, I loved her energy and am eager to follow up and feature Sharon in our Spiritual Voices section, so keep your eyes peeled.

The ever so renowned Byron Katie was a blessing at the event. Not only did she speak on the main stage but she did a two hour break-out session with someone who was working out an issue in her life. She so tactfully but directly brings up exercises for the audience to do in order to turn your suffering inwards rather than externally so you can get to the real suffering and diffuse it.

Katie Byron spiritual teacher Wisdom 2.0

Byron Katie

She asked us to go into complete stillness and ask ourselves, what and who would you be without thought? Once you remove your needs and thoughts from the equation, then what are you?

You see, when we honor and respect the other persons life and needs and see how you feel without your needs infused, a deeper understanding emerges.  In other words, when you remove the need for the other person to act and turn it around, you suddenly take responsibility for your own needs and realize you can give yourself what you need and  YOU can love and hug yourself and YOU can heal yourself. We all have what we need inside ourselves.

When we turn it around and take responsibility for our needs, then we can give what we are wanting to receive rather than continuing the suffering while you keep expecting something you may never get. For example, if you want a hug (and keep expecting one from your mother or partner) then rather long for it or make the other person wrong while you remain in pain, stand up and give it instead.

Would you rather suffer or get the hug?

Byron Katie

When we take the time to realize the pain someone else is experiencing is the same pain we are experiencing, the opposite of fear and anger emerges.

In smaller break out sessions, we also explored death as simply a belief, which can be tough because it often goes against our identity and comes head to head with our deepest fears.

But let’s remember that fear can also just be a pattern and something we can nip in the bud by choosing love and trust instead.

“Fear is fear until it isn’t! — Byron Katie

collective consciousness Jack Kornfield Wisdom 2.0

Jack Kornfield on the main stage – Author, Buddhist Practitioner and an instrumental teacher to introduce Buddhist mindfulness practice to the West.

Sadly, I missed both the Q&A and the main talk by Jon Kabat-Zinn who has been a main speaker at Wisdom 2.0 for years.

I’m a huge fan of what he’s done to shift consciousness around medicine. As creator of the Stress Reduction Clinic and the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, he has been weaving meditation and mindfulness into healthcare.

He was a student of some of the Buddhist greats you will be aware of, such as Thich Nhat Hanh and Zen Master Seung Sahn.  John is also a founding member of the Cambridge Zen Center in Cambridge Massachusetts.

Additionally, there were several panel discussions like the compelling all women one with Radha Agrawal, Konda Mason and Heather Gallagher.

Honda Mason Wisdom 2.0 collective consciousness

Konda Mason in a Q&A session. She is the Co-Founder and CEO of Impact Hub Oakland, an Oakland-based co-working space supporting & connecting socially engaged change makers and social entrepreneurs in creating community and bringing their projects to life as they create a better world.

collective consciousness Wisdom 2.0

Radha Agrawal is best known as the Co-Founder and CEO of DAYBREAKER, a morning dance movement and immersive experience and also co-founder of THINX underwear, a solution for all women with periods.

Leo Babauta Wisdom 2.0

Leo Babauta founded Zen Habits which is about finding simplicity and mindfulness in the daily chaos of our lives. With over a million readers, it is about clearing the clutter so we can focus on what’s important, create something amazing, find happiness.

Wisdom 2.0 collective consciousness

Buddhist teacher Frank Ostaseski who is also a leader in the field of end-of-life care on the main stage. He co-founded the Zen Hospice Project and created the Metta Institute to train professional in dealing with end-of-life issues.

As always, the folks at Wisdom 2.0 set up a Yoga Room where you could participate in various forms of yoga throughout the day, from Heart Flow Yoga and Hatha Flow to Vinyasa and yoga for spine relief by Sean Haleen.

They also have a big lounge area every year where you can hang, sit and meditate, drink tea and coffee or spend time with some of their exhibitors, partners and sponsors.

Strozzi Institute had a big space this year (think embodiment) and I met with some organizations I respect like Spirit Rock in northern California, California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS), Pachamana Alliance who bridges the indigenous and modern worlds, the Center for Mindfulness, and Fetzer Institute.

Hanging out with the folks at Strozzi Institute

Wisdom 2.0 Strozzi Institute

Strozzi Institute Public Program Offerings & Courses

The Lotus Collaborative, an Eating Disorder Recovery Center

Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS)

Wisdom 2.0 consciousness collective Ever Forward

These two filled me in on the Ever Forward Club in Oakland. They’re offering academic support for kids, team building, service to community, parent focus groups, goal setting workshops, mentorship, school emotional learning and more which has yielded a 100% graduation rate of Seniors from High School – bravo guys! Way to go. Join their movement and the #100kMasks Challenge.

Sound meditation and healing demos

Heroic Voice Academy

Ratna Ling Retreat Center for Meditation & Beyond

Wisdom 2.0 Rob Sidon

Common Ground founder Rob Sidon

Fetzer Institute Wisdom 2.0

The Conversation Lounge, sponsored by Fetzer Institute

Wisdom 2.0 in the main lounge

Deidre Norman, SF Yoga Magazine, Jeff Bausemer, Producer East Meets West and Renee Blodgett, We Blog the World

Creativity & Fun Meets Consciousness

Indian paintbrush

Indian paintbrush (joy and presence)

Peacefulness Wisdom 2.0

Oneness with all that is….

See our write-up on a couple of courses we took at Spirit Rock and be sure to check out the courses at CIIS — here, you can actually take academic programs and get diplomas or certifications in a variety of healing, spiritual, philosophical, psychological and sociological tracks.

Their holistic approach to education consists of four schools and 25 degree programs that combine academic rigor, consciousness, and spirituality to foster personal and professional growth.

California Institute for Integral Studies Booth (CIIS)

California Institute of Integral Studies Booth (CIIS) in San Francisco

collective consciousness Wisdom 2.0

Above and below, Soren Gordhamer and Michelle Gale close the 2018 conference.

Wisdom 2.0 collective consciousness

The entire Wisdom 2.0 team at the end of the conference on the main stage. Soren Gordhamer to the left.

See our Video recap of this year’s Wisdom 2.0 event.

Wisdom 2.0 Video Recap

Head on over to the Wisdom 2.0 website for more information on their work and speakers and also be sure to check out our coverage of the 2017 Wisdom 2.0 event as well as our Spiritual Events section.

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