To Make This World a Better, Gentler, Safer Place



Dear IONS Community,

Like many of you, the recent mass murder of little children in a Connecticut school knocked the wind out of me. I could not even talk with my son, for fear of breaking down with emotion as I looked at each grieving parent. Inevitably I asked myself if we were doing enough – if we COULD do enough – to make this world a better, gentler, safer place for ourselves, our children, our grandchildren, and for all the people we love.

Sometimes, especially when we’re working on long-term societal and spiritual change, what we do doesn’t seem urgent enough, immediate enough, or big enough. Yet our work is in the essence of the Jewish tradition of “Tikkun” – to repair the world – a world in need of much work, much love, and much personal and social responsibility. I am proud of the work we are doing together through IONS; it is as vitally important today as ever in our history.

For the past four decades IONS has been researching the nature and potentials of mind and consciousness and the interconnectedness of all things, and applying that research to help make this world a better place. IONS’ transformative education programs and materials have touched hundreds of thousands of people, and they, in turn, have touched countless more.

Now, when it is more urgent than ever to recognize that we are all interconnected and that the survival and flourishing of our planet and its people depends on each of us, IONS’ work has never been needed more.

For example, our new Worldview Explorations curriculum is reaching a crucial generation of young people with a unique experiential program that expands self-awareness, increases a sense of interconnection with others, and cultivates understanding and compassion for people with different perspectives and backgrounds. Our Conscious Aging program is helping elders make choices that transform their later years into a time of wholeness, purpose, spiritual growth, and commitment to serving the community.

Other applications of IONS research include programs that benefit people in marginalized populations like the At Home Within program that trains homeless people in meditation, and the Mindful Motherhood training for high-risk pregnant women.

Thank you for being part of IONS and for expanding the circle of knowledge, love, compassion, and understanding.

Be well, and be there for each other.

Steve Villano
IONS CEO / President

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