Hope is an antidote to pessimism, depression, stagnation, and powerlessness. It is a powerful force for personal and planetary transformation, a catalyst for both individual and systemic change. An indespensible ingredient in our lives, hope is the optimistic belief that people and circumstances can improve. It rejects the conclusion that our future will be a stale replica of the past, more of the same. Hope is the fresh expectation of good things to come. The two-fold mission of Raising Hope is to help distribute this antidote, promote optimism, and feed this expectation by sharing inspiring, health-enhancing messages of hope; and to encourage others to become "holders of hope."
Hope has proactive and prophylactic powers. Proactively, hope is a way of thinking, feeling, and acting that can enhance the quality of life, help guard against despair, serve as means of coping, and fuel individual and national transformation. Prophylactically, the power of hope can serve as a stress-reducing antidote to:
- The epidemic of fear, anxiety, and clouds of doubt hanging over our nation.
- The hope-killing news and frightening media images of terrorism.
- The anger-saturated disinformation spread by partisan journalism and "fake news" sites.
- The emotionally-draining, rude rants posted on various social media sites.
Raising Hope is my response to the stress-inducing, health-threatening, growing epidemic of social and political divisiveness and polarization. Saliva, blood, and brainwave tests provide convincing evidence showing that over-exposure to negative news, and media that communicate messages of anger, bigotry, conflict, cruelty, disrespect, fear, hopelessness, hate, pain, racism, unfriendliness, and ugliness, has a measurable weakening effect on the body's life energy and a detrimental impact on overall health. Compare this to the antidote-like protective, strengthening, and health-enhancing effects triggered by exposure to expressions of cooperation, compassion, loving-kindness, respect, courage, hope, friendliness, pleasure, and beauty.
Communication and information can either help or harm—either increase and strengthen our life energy or decrease and weaken it. The good news? We have the power of choice—the power to filter. We can choose to help protect our selves from the stress-inducing effects triggered by over-exposure to negative messaging. The antidote is simple but not always easy. Give more attention to positive, constructive, conversations and media messages that leave us feeling encouraged, hopeful, and inspired. Give less attention to negative, destructive, conversations and media messages that leave is feeling discouraged, hopeless, and disillusioned.
Raising Hope offers multi-media resources to help you feel more relaxed, healthy, and hopeful. Please browse through our collections. As you do, may the message, medicine, and magic of hope, inspire you to expect the good and, in your own way, serve as one of the countless "holders of hope"—those who strive to embody, express, and help transmit the protective and life-enhancing power of hope.
Timothy A. Storlie, PhD