Wisdom 2.0

Last weekend I made my yearly pilgrimage to Wisdom 2.0 in San Francisco, one of the few conferences I attend every year. Wisdom is always hard to describe accurately, but I talk about it as “a conference where you learn about bringing mindfulness to the workplace”. There’s lots of stuff in there about life as well — but there is a strong emphasis on work, tech and the imbalances that these things can create in our lives.

Sometimes it’s better to describe Wisdom 2.0 through it speakers as this can give a better sense of the topics and audience. Some of my favorite speakers from the past have included:

  • Senior execs from Facebook, Google and Linked In
  • Evan Williams (Twitter & Medium founder)
  • Ariana Huffington (of the Huffington Post)
  • Authors Jon Kabat-Zinn and Dan Siegel
  • Musicians Jewell & Alanis Morisette
  • Brandon Stanton (of “Humans of New York”)
  • The translator to the Dali Lama
  • Congressman Tim Ryan
  • Chade-Meng Tan (the “jolly good fellow” from Google and founder of the Search Inside Yourself program)

I also used it as an opportunity to play with a GoPro Hero 5 which I recently purchased. I recently committed to learning filmmaking as a means of storytelling and this will be part of that. Slow, but fun progress — here’s my video from the weekend:

Finally I jotted down a few quotes / comments that resonated with me the most. Some of these standalone well, others may need more context, but I’ve included them nonetheless.

  • “Stand up for what you believe in, not in a heroic way. But in a dedicated way. Because you love it.”
  • “Trust what you find in yourself is what the world needs”
  • “Sit and tend the garden. No matter the size” (there were lots of interesting comments this year about the importance of doing great work, whatever the size / scale)
  • “One person with courage is a majority.”
  • “You can pick all the flowers but you can’t stop the spring.”
  • “I offer myself as a guardian of nature , a messenger of peace.” (from the poem: http://www.yourdailypoem.com/listpoem.jsp?poem_id=91)
  • “Save something because you love it. Make peace the thing that you contribute”
  • “Art is not about showing off, it’s about showing yourself.” (it took me a long time to learn this for myself)
  • “We don’t need more gurus. We need people who can have authentic lives.”
  • “Hardwood trees grow slowly. But they are resilient. I wanted to be a hardwood tree. My roots are my values.”
  • “Fear is a thief. And it takes the past and projects it into the future.”
  • “The point of life is to transmute pain into beauty. We don’t get to avoid pain. None of us get out of here without pain.”
  • “People use art as propaganda to show themselves as being more perfect than your really are. But you drown under the weight of your own armor. The more vulnerable I am, the safer I am”
  • “I like being hard to offend. When I become offended, I become curious. This is a pointer or neon sign to something interesting.”
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