Radical Joy Revealed
March 1, 2017
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Radical Joy Revealed is a weekly message of inspiration about finding and making beauty in wounded places. We hope you'll enjoy these doorways into places that are both familiar and surprising, and we welcome your suggestions, stories, and photos. Click here to subscribe. 


Mountaintop blowing up
Mountaintop removing in Wise County, Virginia. Photo by Mario Tama / Getty Images
   
"When you love something so much, part of you is part of that earth," said Tonya Adkins of Olive Hill, Kentucky as she rolled in her hand a small ball of clay she had scooped years earlier from her land.
 
Tonya was one of several Appalachian women and men who participated in The Ground Beneath Our Hearts, an event sponsored by Radical Joy for Hard Times in communities around the world affected by mineral extraction.
 
Speaking at the Sept ember 12, 2015 event in the coal mining country of Charleston, West Virginia, Tonya continued, "When I go home, my heart aches to see the place I love being blown u p. In its first form this little ball of clay was very soft, but through manipulations and being exposed to certain things, it's turned very hard. I used to be very shy and backward until I saw the earth being destroyed by mountaintop removal, and I've become tough. I've become tough in fighting the bad. "
 
For decades mountaintop mining, a coal extraction process that blows off the tops of Appalachian Mountain peaks to make the coal more accessible, has been providing a livelihood for the people of Appalachia, even as it makes them sick and shortens their lives.
 
Last month President Donald Trump signed a bill that killed the "stream protection rule" that President Obama enacted at the end of his term. Now coal companies will be much freer to dump mining debris into streams. This waste clogs waterways, clouds the air with toxic dust, and threatens health.
 
And now Tonya and the other people of Appalachia have even more to mourn about the places they love.
 
Watch all of Tonya Adkins's moving testimony and that of other participants in our Ground Beneath Our Hearts video.

To discover other stories of inspiring people, stories, photos, and ideas, subscribe to
 

"Happiness is conditional. Joy is not." Join RadJoy founder Trebbe Johnson for
Radical Joy for Hard Times weekend workshop at Rowe Center in western Massachusetts April 14-16. Learn how radical joy begins with a willingness to face your suffering and open up to the moment in a refreshing space of honesty and receptivity. You'll become newly attentive to surprising outbursts of beauty and generosity--in nature, in your friends and family, and in the stories of others. You'll learn, too, that once you've received these gifts of beauty, you must extend yourself beyond your experience of suffering to give beauty outward--and in that giving is joy.
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Radical Joy for Hard Times is a global community of people dedicated to finding and making beauty in wounded places. Reconnecting with these places, sharing our stories of loss, and making acts of beauty there, we transform the land, reconnect people and the places that nourish them, and empower ourselves to make a difference in the way we live on Earth. 
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Each week Radical Joy Revealed comes to you free of charge with inspiring stories and suggestions for living with endangered places in creative, life-affirming ways. It takes thought, imagination, and a sense of timing to uncover and write the stories, choose just the right images to accompany them, and prepare them for distribution, and we could use your financial help. Please show your support of Radical Joy Revealed by making a tax-deductible donation to our non-profit organization.

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