How to Practice RadJoy2019-06-23T18:29:29-08:00

WHAT IS THE RADJOY PRACTICE?

The RadJoy Practice is making simple, spontaneous gifts for places that have fallen on hard times.

No matter where we live, we find places we love that are broken or endangered: rivers that are polluted, meadows paved over to make a mall, even the tree in your own backyard killed by insects. Through the RadJoy Practice, we show our love for these places and our enduring connection with them by making simple gifts of beauty for them.

5 SUGGESTED STEPS TO PRACTICE

There are countless ways to do the RadJoy Practice! You can do it alone or with a group. You can do it spontaneously or plan weeks in advance. As we like to say, there are 10 Ways You Can’t Do It Wrong.

  • 1. Go, alone or with friends, to a wounded place.

  • 2. Sit awhile and share your stories about what the place means to you.

  • 3. Get to know the place as it is now.

  • 4. Share with the others what you discovered.

  • 5. Make a simple gift of beauty for the place.

Download The Guide!

And don’t forget to send us a photo and description of what you did! We’ll put it on our website and you and your gift will be added to the counter on our home page.

There are many ways to do the RadJoy Practice. You can sing to your wounded place or say a prayer for it. You can hug a tree or make a mandala. Many people make the RadJoy Bird out of materials they find at the place.

In 2018, we’re giving away lengths of organically-dyed, hand-spun golden yarn that you can weave into your gift for the Earth.

There are countless ways to do the RadJoy Practice! You can do it alone or with a group. You can do it spontaneously or plan weeks in advance. As we like to say, there are 10 Ways You Can’t Do It Wrong!

READ THE FAQ’s

For more ideas about how to do the RadJoy Practice for a place you care about, read the Stories shared by other members. Trebbe Johnson’s book, 101 Ways to Make Guerrilla Beauty is filled with suggestions for making simple, meaningful art at a wide variety of places.

THE BOOK

HOW TO GATHER TOGETHER

Thank you for loving the Earth and for being brave enough to face the hurt you feel about what’s happened to it!

If this is the first time you’ve done the RadJoy Practice at a wounded place, you may find that you feel some resistance—in yourself and in others you’ve invited to join you. That’s entirely natural. It takes courage to go and gaze deliberately at what we fear will open up feelings of loss, grief, anger, and helplessness.

However, you are very likely to find that, once you do take the step of going to a hurt place, you’ll discover that:

  • instead of pushing you deep into despair, opening up to your feelings blazes new pathways of compassion, connectedness, and relief
  • instead of feeling alienated from the place, you experience a new love and admiration for it
  • instead of feeling helpless, you realize that you are capable of creating something beautiful out what’s around you—under any circumstances

Even at this time of mounting sorrow and damage to the Earth, not everyone is willing to take the step of going to a damaged, endangered place, facing their feelings, and being willing to find and make beauty. Thank for being one of the ones who dares.

FAQs

What if it’s off-limits because of toxicity, structural instability, or located in a dangerous area? Or what if you are limited because of physical disability? Is it sufficient simply to “send healing thoughts” to a place?

Yes and no. The  RadJoy Practice is most powerful when you can get as close as possible to your wounded place—without jeopardizing your safety or breaking laws. If that means you stay behind a fence or on the outskirts—fine. If you are physically unable to go to the place, either because of the conditions of the place or your own physical condition, there are other options:

  1.    Remain where you are and make a drawing of the place or a simple map using everyday objects. Don’t try to make this representation “accurate.” Put your feelings about it into what you do. If it’s a polluted lake, for example, paint it black.
  2.    Meditate about the place, alone or with friends. Or share stories with friends and family about what the place means to you.
  3.    Create the RadJoy Bird out of materials you have at hand and give them to a place that is accessible. Do this on behalf your wounded place.

It’s not what you create at a place that makes the biggest impact. It’s your own willingness to look around, collect interesting, colorful things that interest you, and put them together with others that really is the spirit of giving a gift to a place. A tree doesn’t care if you can carry a tune. Anyway, you are only the first artist of this gift of beauty you’re making for this place. After you leave, the winds, rains, sun, and animals will add their own handiwork to it.

Sometimes people feel called to give beauty and attention to a place that’s not out in nature, but inside. For example, a therapist in Ireland made the RadJoy bird out of tissues tossed out by her clients after they’d wiped their tears during sessions with her. In Tel Aviv a small team of people decided to make whimsical mobiles for patients awaiting bone marrow transplants in a highly sterile hospital ward where they weren’t allowed to have plants or even flowers. And a group of volunteers in Kabul, Afghanistan participated in one of our Global Earth Exchanges by cleaning up around a bomb crater.

You’ve planned a wonderful event for a place and then it pours rain. Or you discover that your place has been declared off-limits by the EPA. You can still make a gift for your place. Sometimes, being creative and flexible is a big part of the process. You can start your event inside and later take it outside. Or you can go back on another day. Or go to the periphery of the place, rather than into the center of it.

10 WAYS YOU CAN’T DO IT WRONG

  • # 1 All you have to do is show up.

  • # 2 You don’t need training.

  • # 3 Anything you do will make a difference.

  • # 4 It’s okay if it’s just you and a friend—or just you and the Earth.
  • # 5 Everything you need to have the experience is already there—except a camera.
  • # 6 Any place is a wounded place if it feels damaged to you.

  • # 7 If you think you don’t know how to listen to the land, you do. Just don’t talk. Be present and look around.

  • # 8 Whatever you feel is appropriate, even if you feel nothing.

  • # 9 Sharing stories? You noticed something in this place. What was it?

  • #10 Make a gift of beauty for the place: Make the RadJoy Bird out of materials you find at the place. And/or: sing, dance, say a prayer, jump, sit, cry, shout, laugh, make a sculpture out of trash, make a circle, make a mudpie, hug a friend, hug a tree, drum, chant, walk in circle, make a human pyramid, do a cartwheel, make a mandala, write a poem, play, make prayer flags, make music…

HEALING MOTHER EARTH:
PRACTICE RADJOY WITH CHILDREN

Dear Parents and Teachers—

Thank you for your interest in joining the Global Earth Exchange. You’ll be joining people all over the world to bring attention and beauty to places where we live and that we love that are damaged or endangered.

Children and young people are deeply connected to nature. They know that many places on the Earth are hurting and they are disturbed by that. When they have the opportunity actually to go to one of these places and do something fun, adventurous, and creative there, they become more engaged in their world. And that means they’re on their way to becoming adults who will put a priority on protecting the places that are important to them.

Ever since the first Global Earth Exchange in 2010, children have been taking an active and often leading part in the adventure.

Click below to download the RadJoy Practice (Earth Exchange Guide) for Children & Adults.

Get the manual!

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