Stop. Look. Lean. Listen. Depend. Focus. Appreciate.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014 - 8:53am
Stop. Look. Lean. Listen. Depend. Focus. Appreciate.

A reminder to pop up your head and look up at a scenic overview one races right by, a centering reflection on Ramadan that doesn't focus on fasting, and a popular post calling for an Interdependence Day.

Post by:
Trent Gilliss (@TrentGilliss),  Executive Editor / Chief Content Officer for On Being
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Each week I write a weekly column trying to capture and replay a tiny bit of the incredible conversations and efforts taking place behind the scenes at On Being. Sometimes it's a listener's response on our Facebook page or a gorgeous photo on Instagram, but it's often intriguing. If you'd like to receive my column in your email inbox, subscribe to our weekly newsletter!

We all travel paths and take routes that become routine by rote. While on my way up north, I was reminded not to take my journey for granted. Forced to the side of the road, I looked up to see this gorgeous scene above. I've driven past this point hundreds of times, but it's a view I never noticed and raced right by. Look up. Lean back. Take in a view anew.

The United Arab Emirates Red Crescent gave out food aid as part of a program for the month of Ramadan. African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) forces provided support in Afgoye, where over 5,000 internally displaced people (IDPs) were given something to eat.

Credit: Tobin Jones License: UN Photo.

With all the focus on fasting, Rahim Snow from Atlanta tells us that the sustenance of Islam's holiest month lies in focusing on letting God in. His message is something from which we can all draw wisdom:

"When we Muslims say the core principle of our faith, 'There is no god but God,' one way to read this is: 'There is no nourishment except God’s nourishment.' So the principle behind fasting from food is the turning of our hearts and minds away from the false sources of nourishment to the one true source of nourishment. In this way, Ramadan is less about saying no to food and more about saying yes to God."

Credit: Dan Dzurisin License: Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).

As many of us Americans celebrated Independence Day on July 4th, Parker Palmer proposes an Interdependence Day to remind us that "we're all in this together."

A warm thanks to all of you who write with your suggestions and your encouragements. I'm deeply grateful for the feedback. Reach out to me by email at or via Twitter at @trentgilliss. And, as always, advice, criticism, pitches, leads. I'm open to all of your feedback.

May the wind always be at your back.

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Trent Gilliss is the driving editorial and creative force behind On Being. He received a Peabody Award in 2007 for his work on "The Ecstatic Faith of Rumi" and garnered two Webby Awards (in 2005, and again in 2008). The Online News Association nominated his journalistic work multiple times in the general excellence and outstanding specialty journalism categories. Trent's reported and produced stories from Turkey to rural Alabama, from Israel and the West Bank to Cambridge, England.

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