Ethan Nichtern talks with Shelly Tygielski about her new book, Sit Down to Rise Up, and the incredible work being done by her mutual aid organization, Pandemic of Love.
Shelly Tygielski is a trauma-informed mindfulness teacher, self-care activist, and the founder of the global grassroots mutual aid organization Pandemic of Love. Her work has been featured by over one hundred media outlets, including CNN Heroes. Shelly’s new book, Sit Down to Rise Up: How Radical Self-Care Can Change the World, is now available. Learn more about her work at shellytygielski.com.
Sit Down to Rise Up
Ethan welcomes Shelly back to The Road Home Podcast, and they chat about her new book, Sit Down to Rise Up. Shelly details her experience with an autoimmune condition that could leave her blind, and how mindfulness practice helps her deal with the extreme discomfort caused by the treatments for her condition.
“I learned to just sort of sit with that discomfort and exist with it, coexist with it, and recognize that this too is a part of who I am. That it is part of my makeup. And that if I’m going to try to heal it, I have to really identify it and get in there and get dirty.” – Shelly Tygielski
Ram Dev (Dale Borglum) explores how pain is mandatory, but suffering is optional, in Healing at the Edge Ep. 36
Pandemic of Love (12:30)
Ethan asks Shelly about her work as an activist, and how her mutual aid organization, Pandemic of Love, came about. Shelly gives some background on how her concept of mutual aid grew from her mindfulness community in South Florida. She talks about the unique way in which Pandemic of Love connects people in need with people who have resources to help.
“And that’s really my mantra: Enough is a Feast. It’s like, if everybody just had enough, if we could just make sure that everybody started at that same baseline and everybody had their basic needs met to the point of enough, imagine what the world would look like. It would look completely different. And that’s really what mutual aid is designed to do, to make sure that anybody who has excess of enough could give to somebody who doesn’t have enough of whatever that is.” – Shelly Tygielski
Shelly Tygielski and Sharon Salzberg talk more about Pandemic of Love in Metta Hour Ep. 121
Deep Listening (29:25)
Ethan shares his own experience participating in Pandemic of Love. He and Shelly discuss the misconception that someone ‘deserves’ to be rich or poor, and how Pandemic of Love has helped change people’s perspective on the matter. They talk about how we’re too polite in America to have difficult conversations, and that we all need to practice deep listening.
“We need to get back to the roots. We need to understand that self-care really is an act of self-preservation and survival, and an act of political resistance, too, by the way.” – Shelly Tygielski