Today the word lost a great teacher, Michael Stone. A beautiful tribute, including graceful words from his partner, Carina, is posted here.
His website’s landing page shares, “I want to live in a world where people are inspired to actively respond to our personal, social, environmental, and economic challenges. How about you?”

For me, a big yes.

I first encountered Michael through Yoga For A World Out Of Balance: Teachings On Ethics And Social Action. Last year, I had the opportunity to sit and study with Michael. I found a kindred spirit with a shared heritage: a good Jewish boy who finds meaning and value in meditation, yoga, and Buddhism. Michael has influenced my yoga practice and teaching from sequences to one-liners.

I join with hundreds of friends and followers in deep sadness and sense of terrible loss of a father of three with a fourth child on the way. At 42, he leaves a big hole in several communities.StoneFamily

From tragedy can come inspiration. Post-traumatic growth, perhaps. This shock comes in the midst of my exploration of what’s next and how I can be of greater service to the world. I’m compelled to share in filling the gap with an expansion and release of my voice. I frequently quote Marianne Williamson, from a lesser-cited portion of her brilliant quotation from A Return to Love, “Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. … as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

It’s time to declare that I have been playing small. It’s time to liberate myself from the fear of suppressing my voice or dimming my light. I have been sitting on a manuscript for about a year. I realize it is really two books. I commit to completing and releasing the first one, For Those Who Dare to Teach, by the end of this month. The second one, (working title From Harm to Harmony) deserves expansion and a publisher and I will focus on that as a key vehicle in sharing my messages of joyful, loving compassion and aliveness.

I am grateful to and I grieve for Michael Stone. I wish love, light, and grace for his family, friends, and followers. I celebrate the opportunity to unleash my bigger game of contribution and service.

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