Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
A Conversation with Jewel
Category:
Healing

In February 1995, singer and songwriter Jewel emerged on the national scene with what would become one of the best-selling debut albums of all time. Twenty-two years later, she will lend her familiar voice in a new way as a featured speaker at the annual conference of Wisdom 2.0.

“We are excited to hear from Jewel about her storied past, growing up on an Alaskan homestead, leaving home at the age of 16, and struggling with all sorts of internal issues, to rise above and rediscover her true self,” said Wisdom 2.0 founder Soren Gordhamer. The conference, of which Esalen is a community sponsor, will be held February 17-19 in San Francisco. Wisdom 2.0’s annual retreat at Esalen will be held August 2017.

In anticipation of her Wisdom 2.0 debut, eNews spoke to Jewel about the experiences which have brought her to this latest chapter in her life.

eNews: Many people identify you as an award-winning singer and songwriter and now most recently a best-selling author. How would you describe yourself?

Jewel: I describe myself as a person who is constantly evolving. Music, books, and poetry are all the soundtrack to my own personal evolution. I believe that if I delve deeply into the river of myself, it will lead me to the ocean of everyone else. I think that's why my writing speaks to people, because it’s not just my story — it's the story of us all. The story of struggle, triumph, failure, and the will to keep standing with greater grace each time.

eNews: When you wrote Never Broken, did you have a vision to create a mindfulness movement and community behind it?

Jewel: I was compelled to write Never Broken in response to a question I get so often: how did I go from an abusive background, to moving out at 16 to being homeless to happy? I know how much people struggle to feel the healing and internal permission needed to become an architect of your own life, instead of the backseat driver of one you were born into. I believe there are every-day solutions that can help other people find peace of mind and live an extraordinary life.

I had hoped to launch the website with the release of the book, so I could pick up where the book left off and offer real tools. I soon found out that getting the exercises I created for myself out of my head and into simple shareable steps would entail a lot of time and thoughtfulness. I released the book while I worked on perfecting the exercises and learned more about the business side of creating a new platform outside of the arts. But personally, I see what I'm talking about in Never Broken, and my exercises are the same thing I have been talking about my whole career:  How do I live a more authentic and satisfying life that has harmony in all aspects of what it means to be human? But now I want to do it by sharing specific things that helped me.

eNews: What has surprised you most about your experience in launching the Never Broken community?

Jewel: I was so pleased when renowned mindfulness expert Dr. Judson Brewer agreed to be my science endorser for the website. I made most of my exercises when I was 18, so to have him and so many wonderful therapists I respect endorse my site (and to see Dr. Brewer explain why my exercises work) has been pretty thrilling.  

eNews: Can you share a bit with us the journey that has brought you to this place in your life where you’re helping others with the tools and insights to bring mindfulness and joy into their lives?

Jewel: I think this has been a mission I have always been on. Hands and Who Will Save Your Soul, among other [songs], were about these topics. My life has been a journey of learning how to look at nature versus nurture and challenge the assumptions and give power back to myself. If I received bad nurture, could I get to know my true nature? And could I re-nurture myself? Could I relearn a new emotional language so I did not repeat the one I was raised with? The answer is yes, if you're willing to look inside and work for it.

Happiness is available to anyone who is willing to look in the mirror and say they demand their life to rise to that level, and then set about creating and executing a plan to create meaningful change. It doesn't take the right therapist, spouse, house or family. It takes learning that happiness is in your hands and yours alone.

eNews: You shared once that a secret you have learned in life is that the great thinkers of the world were not great thinkers – they were great “get-out-of-their-own-wayers”. How are you able to get out of your own way, and what can we do in own lives to do the same?

Jewel: I don't believe scientific, personal or artistic breakthroughs of any kind happen because a person thought about it. It's because they learned how to escape the mind and tap into a larger sense of intelligence. Eureka moments come when we are inspired — and that does not take place in the mind, nor by being consumed with thoughts of anxiety, fear, or worry. They come from developing a relationship with your own inner Observer and distancing from the noise and static in your head so that you can hear your own soul's longing to talk to you.

eNews: What does it mean to be a farmer of light?

Jewel: I sign all my emails with this quote from a poem I wrote: "We are not in the business of fighting darkness, we are farmers of light." To me, it means we no longer lend our strength to that which we wish to be free from, choosing to focus instead on the good we can grow in the world.

eNews: You’ve inspired so many with your heart-felt words and music. Who inspires you?

Jewel: So many amazing authors... Rilke, Bob Marley, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Flannery O'Connor, Steinbeck, Pablo Neruda.... really too many to count!

Learn more about the Never Broken community.

Tickets are still available for Wisdom 2.0. Register today.

“Remembering to be as self compassionate as I can and praying to the divine that we're all a part of.” 
–Aaron

“Prayer, reading, meditation, walking.”
–Karen
“Erratically — which is an ongoing stream of practice to find peace.”
–Charles
“Try on a daily basis to be kind to myself and to realize that making mistakes is a part of the human condition. Learning from our mistakes is a journey. But it starts with compassion and caring. First for oneself.”
–Steve

“Physically: aerobic exercise, volleyball, ice hockey, cycling, sailing. Emotionally: unfortunately I have to work to ‘not care’ about people or situations which may end painfully. Along the lines of ‘attachment is the source of suffering’, so best to avoid it or limit its scope. Sad though because it could also be the source of great joy. Is it worth the risk?“
–Rainer

“It's time for my heart to be nurtured on one level yet contained on another. To go easy on me and to allow my feelings to be validated, not judged harshly. On the other hand, to let the heart rule with equanimity and not lead the mind and body around like a master.”
–Suzanne

“I spend time thinking of everything I am grateful for, and I try to develop my ability to express compassion for myself and others without reservation. I take time to do the things I need to do to keep myself healthy and happy. This includes taking experiential workshops, fostering relationships, and participating within groups which have a similar interest to become a more compassionate and fulfilled being.“
–Peter

“Self-forgiveness for my own judgments. And oh yeah, coming to Esalen.”
–David B.

“Hmm, this is a tough one! I guess I take care of my heart through fostering relationships with people I feel connected to. Spending quality time with them (whether we're on the phone, through messages/letters, on Zoom, or in-person). Being there for them, listening to them, sharing what's going on with me, my struggles and my successes... like we do in the Esalen weekly Friends of Esalen Zoom sessions!”
–Lori

“I remind myself in many ways of the fact that " Love is all there is!" LOVE is the prize and this one precious life is the stage we get to learn our lessons. I get out into nature, hike, camp, river kayak, fly fish, garden, I create, I dance (not enough!), and I remain grateful for each day, each breath, each moment. Being in the moment, awake, and remembering the gift of life and my feeling of gratitude for all of creation.”
–Steven
“My physical heart by limiting stress and eating a heart-healthy diet. My emotional heart by staying in love with the world and by knowing that all disappointment and loss will pass.“
–David Z.


Today, September 29, is World Heart Day. Strike up a conversation with your own heart and as you feel comfortable, encourage others to do the same. As part of our own transformations and self-care, we sometimes ask for others to illuminate and enliven our hearts or speak our love language.

What if we could do this for ourselves too, even if just for today… or to start a heart practice, forever?



About

Esalen Team

A Conversation with Jewel

About

Esalen Team

Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
Category:
Healing

In February 1995, singer and songwriter Jewel emerged on the national scene with what would become one of the best-selling debut albums of all time. Twenty-two years later, she will lend her familiar voice in a new way as a featured speaker at the annual conference of Wisdom 2.0.

“We are excited to hear from Jewel about her storied past, growing up on an Alaskan homestead, leaving home at the age of 16, and struggling with all sorts of internal issues, to rise above and rediscover her true self,” said Wisdom 2.0 founder Soren Gordhamer. The conference, of which Esalen is a community sponsor, will be held February 17-19 in San Francisco. Wisdom 2.0’s annual retreat at Esalen will be held August 2017.

In anticipation of her Wisdom 2.0 debut, eNews spoke to Jewel about the experiences which have brought her to this latest chapter in her life.

eNews: Many people identify you as an award-winning singer and songwriter and now most recently a best-selling author. How would you describe yourself?

Jewel: I describe myself as a person who is constantly evolving. Music, books, and poetry are all the soundtrack to my own personal evolution. I believe that if I delve deeply into the river of myself, it will lead me to the ocean of everyone else. I think that's why my writing speaks to people, because it’s not just my story — it's the story of us all. The story of struggle, triumph, failure, and the will to keep standing with greater grace each time.

eNews: When you wrote Never Broken, did you have a vision to create a mindfulness movement and community behind it?

Jewel: I was compelled to write Never Broken in response to a question I get so often: how did I go from an abusive background, to moving out at 16 to being homeless to happy? I know how much people struggle to feel the healing and internal permission needed to become an architect of your own life, instead of the backseat driver of one you were born into. I believe there are every-day solutions that can help other people find peace of mind and live an extraordinary life.

I had hoped to launch the website with the release of the book, so I could pick up where the book left off and offer real tools. I soon found out that getting the exercises I created for myself out of my head and into simple shareable steps would entail a lot of time and thoughtfulness. I released the book while I worked on perfecting the exercises and learned more about the business side of creating a new platform outside of the arts. But personally, I see what I'm talking about in Never Broken, and my exercises are the same thing I have been talking about my whole career:  How do I live a more authentic and satisfying life that has harmony in all aspects of what it means to be human? But now I want to do it by sharing specific things that helped me.

eNews: What has surprised you most about your experience in launching the Never Broken community?

Jewel: I was so pleased when renowned mindfulness expert Dr. Judson Brewer agreed to be my science endorser for the website. I made most of my exercises when I was 18, so to have him and so many wonderful therapists I respect endorse my site (and to see Dr. Brewer explain why my exercises work) has been pretty thrilling.  

eNews: Can you share a bit with us the journey that has brought you to this place in your life where you’re helping others with the tools and insights to bring mindfulness and joy into their lives?

Jewel: I think this has been a mission I have always been on. Hands and Who Will Save Your Soul, among other [songs], were about these topics. My life has been a journey of learning how to look at nature versus nurture and challenge the assumptions and give power back to myself. If I received bad nurture, could I get to know my true nature? And could I re-nurture myself? Could I relearn a new emotional language so I did not repeat the one I was raised with? The answer is yes, if you're willing to look inside and work for it.

Happiness is available to anyone who is willing to look in the mirror and say they demand their life to rise to that level, and then set about creating and executing a plan to create meaningful change. It doesn't take the right therapist, spouse, house or family. It takes learning that happiness is in your hands and yours alone.

eNews: You shared once that a secret you have learned in life is that the great thinkers of the world were not great thinkers – they were great “get-out-of-their-own-wayers”. How are you able to get out of your own way, and what can we do in own lives to do the same?

Jewel: I don't believe scientific, personal or artistic breakthroughs of any kind happen because a person thought about it. It's because they learned how to escape the mind and tap into a larger sense of intelligence. Eureka moments come when we are inspired — and that does not take place in the mind, nor by being consumed with thoughts of anxiety, fear, or worry. They come from developing a relationship with your own inner Observer and distancing from the noise and static in your head so that you can hear your own soul's longing to talk to you.

eNews: What does it mean to be a farmer of light?

Jewel: I sign all my emails with this quote from a poem I wrote: "We are not in the business of fighting darkness, we are farmers of light." To me, it means we no longer lend our strength to that which we wish to be free from, choosing to focus instead on the good we can grow in the world.

eNews: You’ve inspired so many with your heart-felt words and music. Who inspires you?

Jewel: So many amazing authors... Rilke, Bob Marley, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Flannery O'Connor, Steinbeck, Pablo Neruda.... really too many to count!

Learn more about the Never Broken community.

Tickets are still available for Wisdom 2.0. Register today.

“Remembering to be as self compassionate as I can and praying to the divine that we're all a part of.” 
–Aaron

“Prayer, reading, meditation, walking.”
–Karen
“Erratically — which is an ongoing stream of practice to find peace.”
–Charles
“Try on a daily basis to be kind to myself and to realize that making mistakes is a part of the human condition. Learning from our mistakes is a journey. But it starts with compassion and caring. First for oneself.”
–Steve

“Physically: aerobic exercise, volleyball, ice hockey, cycling, sailing. Emotionally: unfortunately I have to work to ‘not care’ about people or situations which may end painfully. Along the lines of ‘attachment is the source of suffering’, so best to avoid it or limit its scope. Sad though because it could also be the source of great joy. Is it worth the risk?“
–Rainer

“It's time for my heart to be nurtured on one level yet contained on another. To go easy on me and to allow my feelings to be validated, not judged harshly. On the other hand, to let the heart rule with equanimity and not lead the mind and body around like a master.”
–Suzanne

“I spend time thinking of everything I am grateful for, and I try to develop my ability to express compassion for myself and others without reservation. I take time to do the things I need to do to keep myself healthy and happy. This includes taking experiential workshops, fostering relationships, and participating within groups which have a similar interest to become a more compassionate and fulfilled being.“
–Peter

“Self-forgiveness for my own judgments. And oh yeah, coming to Esalen.”
–David B.

“Hmm, this is a tough one! I guess I take care of my heart through fostering relationships with people I feel connected to. Spending quality time with them (whether we're on the phone, through messages/letters, on Zoom, or in-person). Being there for them, listening to them, sharing what's going on with me, my struggles and my successes... like we do in the Esalen weekly Friends of Esalen Zoom sessions!”
–Lori

“I remind myself in many ways of the fact that " Love is all there is!" LOVE is the prize and this one precious life is the stage we get to learn our lessons. I get out into nature, hike, camp, river kayak, fly fish, garden, I create, I dance (not enough!), and I remain grateful for each day, each breath, each moment. Being in the moment, awake, and remembering the gift of life and my feeling of gratitude for all of creation.”
–Steven
“My physical heart by limiting stress and eating a heart-healthy diet. My emotional heart by staying in love with the world and by knowing that all disappointment and loss will pass.“
–David Z.


Today, September 29, is World Heart Day. Strike up a conversation with your own heart and as you feel comfortable, encourage others to do the same. As part of our own transformations and self-care, we sometimes ask for others to illuminate and enliven our hearts or speak our love language.

What if we could do this for ourselves too, even if just for today… or to start a heart practice, forever?



About

Esalen Team

Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
A Conversation with Jewel
Category:
Healing

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About

Esalen Team

A Conversation with Jewel

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Esalen Team

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