N4 Global Summit 2019

Beauty in a Broken World: A Call to Action


What a moment we are living in. A global moment. A local moment. A “glocal” moment. Like many, I am concerned about how this will all play out, but I am also buoyed by the sense of our global “in-it-togetherness.” It’s true that we’re all experiencing “the rapid implementation of social distancing,” and that “social distancing threatens the social contact” (Ezra Klein) we, as human beings, crave. So what can we do? What definite actions can we take that could ease this social distancing? We are, after all, an organization that intentionally connects people.

So here’s our ask: Please take a few minutes of your day to suggest an idea (or two) that N4 can implement over the coming days and weeks to connect people. It could be as simple as a 20-minute guided meditation with Shoshana Perry (our mindfulness guru) or an N4 book club to discuss Colum’s Apeirogon. Perhaps we can initiate virtual story exchanges or connect individuals in our network (or beyond) that simply want to chat with someone else in the world as they muddle through this collective predicament. Let’s put the power of our positive thinking to work!

We ask everyone to put their suggestions into this suggestion box (no idea is too small, too big) so we can begin to tackle this social distancing and reconnect everyone “virtually.” Your suggestions can be for both our “N4 family” and folks in our broader network, or they can be for those folks that have never even heard of us.

I will leave you with the paraphrased words of our dear artists Terry Tempest Williams and Colm Mac Con Iomaire. Terry asserts that we must always strive to find beauty in a broken world, that the only way we’re going to survive is through our relationships – that is where the healing occurs. Similarly, Colm asserts that art is about “composing from compost.” So let’s take the compost of our current experience and turn it into roses – into beauty. What do you say…?

With hope and love,
The N4 Team