If you’re a fellow yoga practitioner, chances are you know who Seane Corn is. She has been a yoga teacher for years now and a true inspiration for many of us, not only because of how beautifully she does yoga or how emotionally she talks about her journey through the practice, but also because of her unbelievable efforts in in the US and abroad with issues such as at risk youth, gangs, prostitution, neglect and abuse.
I’ve always said that one person can make enough ripples to change the tides. My mother was an activist all her life which of course made for a volunteer daughter as well. I think my first time was at the age of 7 when I insisted I wanted to do something with her and began stuffing envelopes and making copies at one of her foundations. We were putting our little grain of sand here and there and I continue after her passing. However, I don’t think we ever made a dent compared to the incredible work Seane does with her organization Off the Mat Into the World.
In that regard, I would love you to see this video of Seane speaking about activism at the Wanderlust Festival in Vermont. It’s truly inspirational. Her thoughts on how our separation from the other is the cause of most human suffering immediately made an impact on me. It made so much sense.
There’s one thing that never ceases to amaze me though, and I would like to talk about it a bit today (although it will have a future post of its own soon), and it’s the ‘all or nothing’ mentality. It seems as though any time you talk about volunteering efforts, and it’s certainly the case when I tell someone I’m vegan as well, people immediately start asking you about all the other causes and situations that need attention and that you’re leaving behind by focusing on whatever it is that floats your boat. There’s always someone looking for the ‘flaw’ in your plan, thinking that because you’re an activist, a vegetarian or you simply recycle, you need to have a foundation to help every single cause on the planet. Where did we get this all or nothing mentality? Seane expresses it beautifully when answering these types of questions in the video. When asked why most of her efforts were in Third World Countries and what she was doing for the people in her own backyard, she very eloquently stated ‘What are you doing for the people in your own backyard? My plate’s full!’ Sadly, the answer for most people is usually ‘nothing’.
It would be impossible for one activist to help with the hundreds of problems that affect our world today, and I honestly believe it’s that thought of ‘I can’t do everything’ that ends up making people stop on their tracks and do nothing when they in fact have a calling for a certain cause. To quote the wonderful and brilliant author and educator Colleen Patrick Goudreau:
“Don’t do nothing because you can’t do everything. Do something… anything!”
I hope you enjoy Seane’s wise words and superhero efforts and join the cause, any cause. The beauty of this is that most of us do have a calling for something, most of us have kindness and concern in our heart. I hope Seane inspires you as much as she has inspired me both on and Off the Mat. Not sure where to start? Seane always says we need to find where our wounds are, and that’s where we will be the most powerful in creating change. I love that.
Leave some comments with your thoughts on this! I’d love to hear from you!