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Levi LCL

Director-General , The Universal Party

TEDCRED 10+

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When did you last feel connected to humanity. When was it and why?

Everyone has ups and downs in their life, but through it all we persevere - together. What I want to ask people is when was the last time you remember feeling truly connected to yourself, your community and humanity.

Furthermore what lead to this epiphany, and what was unique about it, and how did it alter your world-view - if at all.

It's important not always for us to describe what's wrong with the world, but also to remember what's right about it. An exercise in remembering the moments that hold us together, is well suited to this aim.

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    Sep 9 2012: I'm always connected to humanity. I value love, life,peace, art and beauty and everything that humanity holds dear.
    That is why I love a good story, and my stories are loved when I'm opportuned to tell it.
    My emotions, thoughts, hopes, expectations, feelings and experiences constantly reminds me that I am human.
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    Sep 8 2012: I don't remember ever NOT feeling connected to humanity. So there was no epiphany.

    Did you experience such an epiphany at some point in your life?
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      Sep 9 2012: I've always felt connected as well but many people I run into after hearing my world views, tell me how they developed their own, and many of them did so later on in their lives - I was interested to hear more, and understand it further.
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        Sep 9 2012: Maybe this is connected to age or how recently the family immigrated as well as to the values and stories that formed ones childhood.
  • Sep 8 2012: Hi, Levi wonderful question :D
    When I was teaching my students in a Private Institute in Korea, I felt somehow bad for them. I promised myself that I would change the way we teach our children in this country, and set them free.

    When I see the people like me who are trying to overcome obstacles, I sympathize with them and become compassionate.
    When did I last feel connected to humanity?
    Can't remember because I feel almost everyday.
    When I feel like giving up and realize that life is really really hard—unlike my expectation, I become more and more compassionate since there are always people like me who sigh and just wonder, “when will my life gets better?”
    From my personal experience, I realize that I aspire to give people a hope when I am ready.
    :)


    Warm Regards~
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      Sep 9 2012: Great response, nice to hear from you and about your personal story. I'm sure it helps by adding to ours.
  • Sep 12 2012: As long as I can remember, I feel connected to humanity through the works and ideas of so many people who have expressed themselves in a manner that I have learned from them and being inspired by them - though most are now dead, I feel a constant sense of gratitude towards them.
  • Sep 10 2012: The most connected I felt to the humanity (not to family or friends, but the whole) was my first concert, there was many people there connected in the desire to see a great show, strangers no matter what they where like rubbed elbows and had a great time. The overwhelming vibe of a good natured show like this (which was mostly free of alcohol at the stages) allowed for such a feeling
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      Sep 10 2012: Music bridges many communities, brings us together (literally).
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    Sep 8 2012: Hi again Levi:>)
    I've ALWAYS felt connected, and often wonder why people feel disconnected. As you say Levi, there are ups and downs in life, and that does not need to alter our feeling of connections. There are many levels of connectivity, and we may feel more or less connected with various people at different times. Underlying all levels of connection, I believe we are all energetically connected, and I have believed that since I was a child.

    There are times when I feel connected, and others may not choose to feel the connection, and that's ok....it is a choice to recognize it.....or not. It has very little to do with "what's wrong with the world", and more to do with what is happening in ourselves. In my perception and experience, the more mindfully aware we are, the more we realize our interconnectedness:>)

    I have the same experience as Fritzie....I don't ever remember NOT feeling connected.
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      Sep 9 2012: I have similar experience as well. I just wanted to understand those who developed it at a later stage to perhaps develop a deeper understanding of how it comes to be.

      I've defenitly run into people who don't feel connected, who are quite intensly focused inside, and who perpetuate conflict in their own lives feeling that close connections are alien, and assume individual loneliness is the norm. Perhaps we've been lucky in some regard, not to have harsh situations which put as at odds with others, like people being heavily discriminated against in daily life, genocide, extreme poverty, and modern slavery.

      Then again feeling connected is a matter of effort on behalf of the individual (but I believe others play a role), ultimately.
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        Sep 9 2012: Levi,
        I think/feel "it comes to be", by first recognizing it in ourself. We cannot give others, something we do not have in ourselves...for ourselves. We need to be familier with it before we can extend it to others.

        I do not believe it is the situations in our lives that cause us to feel disconnected because many people who have faced incredible challenges in the life experience have stayed connected with themselves and others.

        I agree with you that there are folks who are intensly focused inside....on themselves....complaining about no one being compassionate. When one has decided that no one is compassionate, that is the reality that person creates for him/her "self", then it is like you say...they may "perpetuate conflict in their own lives feeling that close connections are alien". Good point Levi. We often create, in our lives exactly what we believe in.

        I certainly agree that "others play a role", in our life experience, and many people can contribute to our wellbeing. However, when we depend on others, to totally take care of our wellbeing, we may be setting ourselves up for disappointment. As thinking, feeling, evolving, multi-sensory, multi-dimensional humans, we have the ability to orchestrate our lives on many levels. If one is not doing that effectively, and blaming his/her discomfort on everyone else, or the world situation, s/he is missing an opportunity to be fully connected with him/her "self", and the whole of humanity.
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    Sep 8 2012: The illusion is that we are not connected, we is. The people who actually realize this and work to make a change are a very small percentage.
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      Sep 9 2012: Very true. Unfortunately only a few do the footwork like you said.
  • Sep 10 2012: I don't believe I have ever felt that in my entire life.
    I have always wondered what it might be like.

    Could someone put their experience into words in a description?
    Or is that too difficult to do? It seems that it might be, for maybe it is a feeling, experience or something that one can only feel or have, in order to know they have/had it.

    Thanks
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      Sep 10 2012: Hi Random,
      I have an underlying belief that we are all interconnected energy beings, so I am feeling, participating in the life experience, and observing from that place of connectedness in myself. I see all humans as more the same than different. My perception, is that we need to recognize it in ourselves....or not....it's a choice. I think in general, we cannot share something with others that we do not have in ourselves, so to feel connected with our "self" is a step toward feeling connected with others...what do you think about that?

      I also believe that everything in nature is energetically connected, so I feel interconnected with nature as well. As I recall, you have mentioned your feelings about your appreciation for nature in other threads? Do you feel connected with nature? Nature and our environment is, for me, a connecting factor regarding connection to all of humanity because we all share the earth, which sustains all of us.
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        Sep 10 2012: The economy is interconnected, everything is. Good point.
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          Sep 10 2012: Yes indeed. You've heard of the Butterfly Effect?

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butterfly_effect

          If you consider all systems, and all people, there is nothing/no one in our world actually disconnected from the whole. One may feel disconnected, and that may be due to one's own perception of "self".
      • Sep 11 2012: What do I think of that?
        Well, thinking is not the same as feeling or experiencing or really having a sense of something.
        I don't have that. Never have. I may intellectually think, opine and even believe that we are all connected, and that everything is connected, in ways we know of, experience, have, feel, etc.

        But, I have never had that. Simple. If i have, it has been so fleeting, that I am unable to remember what it felt like, a realness about it, that it was real and true and so on. And so on, because I am unable to put into words even the lack of it.

        I know how this came to be, to some degree, and all I have done to undo, get through, put it behind, leave it, or however one could put it, has failed. Or, I have failed at it. Simple. That is what is true and I can only go by what is true.

        I abhor lies and to some degree they are part of the reason I am so disassociated from myself and thus others.

        I no longer try to find it. If it comes, suddenly, out of the blue, I might know it, sense it, experience it, but it will vanish almost immediately. That is how it has been. But in a strange way, it reminds me of the insides of protons. Empty, except for virtual particles popping in and out of existence.

        Feelings I do have are like writing this, while I sense I am not here and am somewhere else, but I know not where.
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          Sep 11 2012: I agree Random,
          Thinking is not the same as feeling. If you wish it to be, perhaps one of these days you can hold onto that "fleeting" moment and make it a permanent part of you?

          I don't perceive that you have "failed" at anything Random. Anyone who is exploring life and all its complexities, as you are, is growing and learning. The fact that you are sharing so much about yourself here and now suggests that you are more connected than you may think/feel?
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    Sep 10 2012: Every time someone dies or loses someone.

    Sometimes just when chatting with someone.

    When meditating or seeing someone expressing strong emotion, other than violence.
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      Sep 10 2012: Yeah dont spam us with material.
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        Sep 11 2012: Don,
        I do not perceive "hate" in Levi's request. I perceive a facilitator of a discussion, trying to keep us all on topic, which TED encourages. So the "us" appears to be the TED community.
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      Sep 9 2012: We live in the time of the least conflict in human history. Although conflicts persist, there are infinitely less of them. The media's sensationalism covers this up, like with dropping murder rates, war and conflict are over-saturated and mentioned before any positive story.

      http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en/steven_pinker_on_the_myth_of_violence.html
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      Sep 9 2012: Craig and Levi,
      I believe a LOT of learning can take place in the face of challenges. We, as individuals and as a global community, can look at situations, evaluate, learn and grow. I don't believe there is much learning when we feel disconnected. Disconnection generally does not facilitate change. It is by being totally connected that we have an opportunity to change the situation.

      I agree Levi, we need to hear more of the good things that are happening in our world. What we focus on expands. If we are constantly focusing on what is "wrong", we may never notice what is "right". The good things that are happening are what we can build on to create a better world.
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    Sep 9 2012: How do we feel connected to humanity when (we) the US spends more on defense than the other top 26 countries combined and only one is not an Allie? Remember, you can't hug with Nuclear arms..... How does anyone reconcile this is what I want to know?
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      Sep 9 2012: Humans are Inherently gregarious, to a greater or lesser extent.

      What causes the problems are people who gain from conflict. On one hand we had the cold war which justified having a military to oppose those who stood to gain from conflict on the other side going all the way back to Sputnik. The military industrial complex needs something to do and lobby to see to it that it stays that way.

      The problem is that terrorist war does not require the industrial military complex.

      I talk to people from Iran, Iraq, Palestine all the time.I consider them to be friends.

      Long term animosity is not organic to humans it is created by those who gain from conflict, that is where you should look.
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        Sep 9 2012: Look to those who start conflict to better understand compassion and connectedness'? Good point, often we look to those who are doing it right to learn, when sometimes you need to look at those doing it 'wrong'.
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      Sep 9 2012: Yeah there are times when compassion is not given, when people dont feel connected, it is important to uncover and discover this trend as well.
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        Sep 9 2012: Before one can uncover and discover compassion (or anything else for that matter) in others, we need to uncover and discover it in ourselves. I do not believe compassion is a "mystery to most everyone". I experience and witness a great deal of compassion in our world. To continually blame and accuse others, does not demonstrate compassion in oneself. "BE" what we want to "SEE" in our world. I think you know this Levi:>)