We are all learning how to keep kindness at the forefront of our daily interactions, how connecting with others can keep loneliness at bay, and how compassionate communities are emerging all over the world. The new podcast ‘Survival of the Kindest’ comes out of the international compassion movement that puts kindness at the heart of our lives, our towns, and our healthcare. Expert in compassionate communities and former palliative care doctor, Julian Abel, welcomes specialists each week to discuss the many ways to have a long and happy life.
Professor George Slavich - What Does The Immune System Care About?
"Suggesting that those things be practiced misses at least 50% of the point which is not just about getting us to live longer but it's about moving us incrementally toward being better people, being more, kind and compassionate to ourselves and to other people, purely for the sake of doing it."
On the Survival of the Kindest podcast we try and piece together a variety of different views which help to explain why compassion is so important.
We have heard from Professor Julianne Holt Lunstad about the dramatic effect of social relationships on reducing the risk of dying. We heard from Professor Steve Cole about how this works at a molecular level, including the field of human social genomics. On this week’s podcast we hear about the fantastic work of Professor George Slavich. George and Steve are colleagues. Starting with a psychology degree, George became increasingly interested in the biological impacts of social relationships. This led him to the field of psychoneuroimmunology. The depth of his interest is amazing. He has managed to describe as complete a picture of the impact of social relationships in all the body systems as we have. He has developed the field of social safety theory which comprehensively examines the evolutionary roots and the impacts of a variety of different environments, both physical and social, on how our bodies function.
Diana Reynolds - The Bigger Picture
"If you're looking at the bits you're not seeing the bigger picture"
On this week’s Survival of the Kindest podcast I am delighted to welcome Diana Reynolds. Diana is the Sustainable Development Change Manager for Welsh Government, where she is a leadership coach and manages a long term behaviour change programme.
Diana has, in various existences, been a school teacher, head of computing, private sector training manager, semiskilled machine operative and university staff development officer. She spent several years working freelance in mid-Wales as a management consultant; providing advice and training on educational management, adult education, information technology and environmental education, through the medium of Welsh and English.
Judah Amani - Making Sense
"Music provides the vehicle to express things that are quite difficult to express"
On this week’s Survival of the Kindest podcast I am delighted to welcome Judah Amani. Judah has an extraordinary background being brought up in Iran, London, and Israel. This unique combination of different cultural upbringings was somewhat disorientating for him. Judah found that he was able to make more sense of his complex world through understanding design. He took a diversion in the world of music, and perhaps found this equally disorientating.
Going back to design via the route of human rights, he used the processes he understood working with prisoners and help them develop In-House records.
The social context of design has been really important to him and there is a real commonality of language with that of community development. Design is in everything and is part of power structures, equity and human rights
Jenny Kassan - What the Community Want
'The small moment of someone choosing to invest a hundred dollars, $500 in a local business, makes such a huge difference. It's a radical act. If we can have more of those small moments, I believe it'll make a huge difference.'
On this weeks survival of the kindest podcast I am delighted to welcome Jenny Kassan. Jenny grew up in something of a radical household, familiarising her with a critique of capitalism. She studied psychology at UC Berkeley and then did an intern with Ralph Nader in Washington DC. This was a formative period for her working on Civil Rights and exposing the negative aspects of big corporations. She went on to law school and then worked for a non-profit community development corporation in Oakland called the Unity Council, where she served as staff attorney and managed community economic development projects, including a $100 million housing project and the formation and management of several social ventures designed to employ and create business ownership opportunities for low-income community residents.
Jenny co-founded the Sustainable Economies Law Center, a non-profit that provides legal information to support sustainable economies. Jenny is also a fellow at Democracy Collaborative.
Jenny’s legal practice, Jenny Kassan Consulting, provides legal services, coaching, and consulting for mission-driven companies, investors, and intermediaries and includes educational programs for entrepreneurs
Connect with Jenny on twitter
Olaf Kulkhe - Cultural Entrepreneurship
This weeks survival of the kind of podcast features Olaf Kuhlke. Olaf was brought up in Germany and studied cultural geography. He went on to study higher degrees in Canada and the United States. He is an associate professor in the department of geography and philosophy at the University of Minnesota Duluth. Olaf’s career Took an interesting turn after a visit to remote communities in northern Canada.
As a cultural geographer, he has written about international migration, large-scale dance festivals and their place in national and local discourse, the representation of national identity in Canadian popular music, the global diffusion of dance practices, and the places of Freemasonry in the United States. Most recently, he has been a passionate advocate for the establishment of cultural entrepreneurship as an academic discipline and practice, and have written about the theoretical foundations of this new form of entrepreneurship emerging out of the liberal arts.
Amara Leigh Hull - Happiness, Love and Health
"I guess we don't really get taught so much at school about how to deal with hormones and how to accept them and be like, that's okay, that's fine."
CW: depression and suicide.
This week Julian talks to TR-14er Amara Leigh Hull. Aged 19, Amara talks openly about the hardships she has been through ranging from depression in school, to her more recent struggles, and where dance and music has fitted in with that.
Throughout lockdowns, very dark periods, and going to uni, Amara has kept up working as a leader with the TR-14ers. To hear her speak about the place it has in her life is to learn from someone what a difference community can make.
I am loving the episodes
Just listened to the Gary Crooks episode and wow! So good to listen to how he has turned things around. The care and compassion he is showing to so many is brilliant. I loved the bit about the police guy being his boss!