The yearning to help alleviate suffering in our world can be overwhelming. People you love are struggling with their mental health, the rates of homelessness due to addiction are on the rise in your community, and images of people living in war zones fill your screens.
When human suffering is a global issue manifesting in various forms, across all layers of society, it’s pertinent to question how much of an impact you can truly have, and what the most effective way to help is.
In his book “Doing Good Better”, William MacAskil’s research into the field of effective altruism reveals that one of the best ways to positively contribute to solving some of the world’s most critical problems is by contributing money to effective charitable organizations.
When we consider poverty, food security, and climate change to be critical areas, where does enabling the distribution of iRest to people throughout our world fit in?
It’s an excellent question with an important answer.
The Exponential Reach of an iRest Teacher
In the first few months of 2020, free iRest practices were listened to over one million times. That’s in China alone.
Amid panic that evolved into rampant stress, anxiety, and depression, Jing Qian and her colleague Dr. Lu formed a volunteer group to translate Richard Miller’s yoga nidra meditations into Chinese, sharing them in their community and with hospital workers.
iRest Teacher, Jing Qian
“The recordings have been a great help for people suffering from pain, anxiety, insomnia, grief, and trauma”, explains Qian. One listener shared: “I've been feeling very depressed these days. I’ve felt hopeless and despairing. I have no energy to do anything. When I woke up from this iRest nap, this powerless feeling disappeared.”
“I want you to realize how much these tools can help people to understand themselves and deal with the unconscious patterns they are caught up in”, says Paul Collins. His work with hundreds of people in prison and those battling addiction is supporting them in rehabilitating themselves.
iRest Supervisor & Mentor, Paul Collins
“Most of the prisoners, and those in addiction recovery, have had traumatic life experiences. They have emotional issues that drive violence and addiction, with no answers for how to deal with them. iRest helps prisoners and people in recovery understand what has driven their destructive patterns and reactive survival behavior. It also helps people in recovery deal with deeper, unresolved issues that can drive their addiction.“
The people he’s worked with echo his understanding: “Little did I know that this was some of the most profound work I’d ever do. I came to understand how childhood experiences were affecting me and learned to meet all parts of myself with compassion.”
Having single-handedly brought support and relief to thousands of school-going children, teachers, nurses, police officers, firefighters, active duty military, veterans, C-suite executives, and federal agents, Jennifer Boileau echoes Collins’ sentiments.
iRest Teacher, Jennifer Boileau
She explains, “My work has always leaned toward supporting the first responder, military and veteran communities because I feel these practices help save lives. How can we expect officers or soldiers to truly process the amount of trauma they experience if we aren't showing up with the strategies to support them? I feel iRest is the answer for anyone struggling with high stress, anxiety, or hypervigilance.”
iRest doesn’t only belong in yoga studios and therapy rooms, it belongs out in the world. This practice is for everyone, in support of the highest good for all because when we address our individual suffering, we’re loosening the systemic roots of everything that’s not working - on a personal level and a collective one.
iRest Teacher, Deborah Welsh
For presidents, world leaders, and political society, this looks like the awakening of a conscious, inclusive, and compassionate approach to governance. A political sea-change from “power over” to “empowering each other”. Or, as Deborah Welsh, who shares iRest at a home providing end-of-life care, exclaims: “It’s the practice of love replacing fear.”
For a person living in poverty, this may look like building inner resilience for facing harsh daily realities while over time reestablishing a connection to their innate self worth and dignity. Ultimately, enabling and supporting this person to create a new way forward.
iRest Teacher, Sharon Ash
“iRest meets people where they are. There’s something for everyone. It’s effective and sustainable and just as powerful for children as it is for senior leaders. There’s no limit.” —Sharon Ash
[Feeling compelled to play your part and significantly impact the world? Take action now by showing your support here.]
“This Is What The World Needs Right Now”
Do you see the potential? Enabling one person to become an iRest teacher means potentially reaching and helping transform hundreds, thousands, perhaps even one million lives. This is why your contributions matter. You can be a sea-change starter. Your contribution has a phenomenal ripple effect across our world and throughout all aspects of society. This is the power and infinite potential of you plus iRest, and our teachers experience it firsthand everytime they share the practice.
iRest Teacher, Peter Coroneos
“Whatever your role in the world, we’re all human. Whatever can be done to increase the availability of iRest to broader populations will contribute to an alleviation of suffering. Support for iRest is ultimately support for your fellow humans.” —Peter Coroneos
“I’m working with some students continuing their practice outside of prison. Some of them want to be able to give back by teaching iRest and sharing their experiences of change and how iRest can help people in prison. Unfortunately, their financial positions mean the training is often cost prohibitive. When scholarships are available, they can complete the training and help others who otherwise would never be able to get access to this kind of work.” —Paul Collins
“Supporting someone to embark on a journey into iRest is like tossing a precious pebble into an infinite pond. The ripples of your gift will extend and expand in all directions, well beyond your initial investment.” —Jennifer Boileau
Supporting our current teachers and enabling the Institute to expand our teacher network through generous scholarships for future teachers in need ensures that you’re having a significant positive impact. It makes you an active part of the solution at an individual level as you help people all over the world gain access to the teachings and relieve their suffering, and at a communal level as new teachers share the practice with new communities and populations around the globe.
Please join us in creating the better world we know is possible.