December 03 2015

My attorney/sister/bff/former-Listserve-winner Harini told me not to say anything incriminating in this email. Hi, NSA! So kids... DON’T do drugs (but, look up “MAPS research” if you’re curious).


Look around your home. Every object you see was created by individuals who made a series of decisions — what materials/shapes to use, what functionality to include, how those objects would make you feel.

The things we bring into our life form a huge part of our day-to-day experience in the world. You can choose to stock up on poorly-made products, or you can consciously consider each object you acquire based on its value, and the values, that it helps you think of when you use it.

Well-made products help us live better, more thoughtfully, more intuitively, in ways we often can’t intellectually perceive, but we just *know*. To me, that’s the magic of design and creativity — through the things we make, we have the power to help us all lead better lives. Shoutout to Patagonia, MUJI, Apple and countless others who get this.

~ ~ ~

We live in interesting times – rife with terrorism, police brutality, climate change, and more.

These are all just large-scale manifestations of personal human struggles. Worrying about politics and the “system” without addressing the root cause — ourselves — is a band-aid solution. After all, a society is just a collection of individuals. Change yourself first, and the world follows.

There’s a parable I love:

One evening, an old Cherokee Indian told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, ‘My son, the battle is between two ‘wolves’ inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.’

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: ‘Which wolf wins?’
The old Cherokee simply replied, ‘The one you feed.’


In any scenario you face, you can *choose* how to react. Decision by decision, we create the world. Here’s to our new wolfpack of ~23,000.

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What would you do if money were no object?

With huge technological changes afoot, we face multiple possible futures.

Behind door #1 is the status quo — massive structural unemployment caused by technology, growing inequality/poverty, and millions living in the rat race under a single-minded pursuit of economic profit at all costs.

Behind door #2 lies the total freedom to pursue our passions, do work we love, and enjoy fulfilling lives, using the technology we’ve built to power the system. Sounds pretty good?

The concept is Universal Basic Income (UBI) — a basic living wage, paid to every citizen, allowing us to eliminate poverty and choose the kind of life we each want to pursue. It’s *crazy* that we have the power to make this happen in the next 10-15 years. I encourage you to look up “Basic Income Action”, join the movement early, and get involved.

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Whether it’s the objects we use and create, the way we live and react in every moment, or the society we build, we hold immense power — we get to decide which wolf to feed. Let’s be mindful of those choices.


A question for you: what would *you* do if money were no object? What’s stopping you currently?


Harish (instagram @hv23)
[email protected]
Bay Area, Earth-Planet, Universe

P.S. We have the crazy belief that everyone is inherently creative — so we’re building a platform where anyone can master creative skills (like design) and find work they love. Check out “Designlab” :)

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