Radical Joy Revealed
December 27, 2017

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. 

green bottles
Kelly, 24, considers herself an environmental activist. She belongs to the Sierra Club and The Wilderness Society, works for an organization that runs therapeutic wilderness programs for teens, and spends her weekends hiking in the mountains near her home in western North Carolina. By her own admission she is also "a little bit obsessive" about recycling. On nights when she goes out to the local bar with her friends, she saves her empty beer bottles and brings them back home to her own recycling bin. She's seen the alley out in back of the bar, where smelly, broken bottles are strewn all around the dumpster, and she's sure they're destined for the landfill. That upsets her. People should be recycling, not throwing things away. Sometimes she feels foolish for what her friends call her overzealous conscience. She doubts that her actions will make much difference in the long run. And then she wonders why she even bothers.
A common assumption is that an action, to be worthwhile, must result in a measurable outcome. In some fields, like medicine, that requirement makes sense. However, in the arts and important cultural trends, the insistence on measuring loses meaning. And when major shifts of consciousness capture whole populations, and people start behaving in significantly different ways, measuring is as futile as trying to identify individual droplets of water in a wave rushing to shore.
Every day, life offers us crossroads large and small, where we must choose either to act with integrity and courage or to take the easy path others are taking. What we choose may have no meaning at all to the world at large and it means the world to our own unique being, which has its own inner compass we feel compelled to follow. So everything and nothing depends on Kelly taking her beer bottles home for recycling. By doing so she bestows on her life and her relationship with the world the greatest possible value. And when we make beauty for a wounded place, even if no one ever sees or knows what we have done, we are taking a bold, strong action that gives our individual lives integrity and import.

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The next  Global Earth Exchange  is June 16, and we're making some changes that will connect the members of our diverse worldwide community in new and inspiring ways. Watch for more details!
It's easy to make beauty anywhere! Here's how!

New from Radical Joy for Hard Times founder
Trebbe Johnson: a book filled with ideas for creating simple, imaginative, collaborative gifts of beauty for hurt places in nature and in your community!
To order click here.
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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