Cave Dreams

Brad in a CaveSometimes I think it would be great to be a Buddhist monk contemplating the meaning of the dharma in a cave somewhere.

That isn’t really the way we do things here in America. Most of us have a family, work, bills, hopefully a vacation, and then more bills.

We’re still supposed to contemplate life. And find a way to integrate the teachings we find in the world into our lives.

It ain’t easy. And it’s the path.

I wonder if the monks up in those caves dream about working.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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Mightier Than the Sword

brad's penWhen my pen runs out of ink I’m always shocked.

By the time I’ve used enough ink to have run out I’ve developed a relationship with this pen. It’s traveled in my pocket, lived on my desk and been privy to secrets that no one else will know. My pen is my collaborator, conspirator and knows both my heart and my grocery needs.

When it’s time for that relationship to end it comes suddenly. I’m always surprised.

It turns out the average pen can write for over a mile before running out of ink. Seems pretty short when you think about the distance it travelled.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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Shut up and show me.

Brad taking a picture of himself through a windowI struggle with how to communicate our company goals.

The problem is the words we would use have been co-opted by companies that we aren’t aligned with.

The bleach company lists integrity, honesty, ethics, collaboration and doing the right thing – in their company values.

The fake seed company uses transparency, integrity and respect.

Makes me laugh and puke at the same time.

To me it’s less about the words and more about the products.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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a hummingbirdThere are two incredible things about hummingbirds.

The first is their whole existence. They make that whirring sound like a string of ‘vvvvvv’s as they fly by. They’re colored with bright jewel tones. And to watch them hover and drink the nectar is simply amazing–those tongues!

The other incredible thing about hummingbirds is that they’re no more special than any other living thing.

Everything and every one of us is that fascinating. That stunning. That beautiful.

With some things (and some people) you just have to look a little harder. We’re not all lucky enough to have tongues that long.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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The California CoastThe world used to be flat.

The few brave sailors of the time knew different. As they sailed, the edge of the earth continued to be on the horizon. While to those on shore, they appeared to have sailed off the earth.

As we sail off into our unknowns, it scares some people. Yet our experience is of confidence because, on our journey away from the shore, we know there is still a horizon ahead. We have a different perspective.

If we asked for feedback from the shore, they’d say you’re crazy or dead. Instead, ask those on the journey with you, they see the horizon.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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Mural behind parking lotSelfless. Selfish.

Such similar sounding words.

When raising kids, you need to be selfless. The attention is on them. You must be passive, loving and nurturing. Engaged from the heart.

Work demands more intellect than feelings. Survival of the fittest. Optimize your income. Selfish. Aggressive.

Balance is necessary. They can even be complimentary. Both are motivated by survival, but what different perspectives.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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It’s A Man’s World

You go girl signWhy is it still remarkable when a woman does something? It seems we may be able to vote for a woman as our president next term. The simple fact of her gender is as big a topic as her world view.

We live in a world that has been mostly directed and molded by men. Whether you like that idea or not, it’s hard to argue with.

I think I’m ready for a change.

I’d like to see what happens when we live in a world guided by the feminine.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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X & Y

a mural in JapanThere are millions of possible genetic combinations that can make up a person. From the color of your eyes to your blood type to your like or dislike for salty foods, the combinations are nearly endless.

All of these combinations are made up of just four proteins. Despite the many, many possible combinations of these proteins there’s just four of them. Humans are remarkably similar to each other.

But, there is a dividing line. Most of us have a roadmap in our makeup that determines how we will develop, the XX or XY divide. Boys and girls. Women and men.

We are so similar on a molecular level.

Yet our experience is vastly different.

Just one little chromosome difference. That’s it.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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Brad's BikeIf I had only a short time to live (relax, I’m fine but you never know), how would I live my life differently? What would I do differently than I’m doing now?

My first thought is that I would exercise, eat healthy and sleep a lot. There’s an honor in living that way for me.

I would be with the people I love.

Laugh as much as possible.

I’d also like to play the piano again.

This is how I try live my life. Except for the piano. Because we only have a short time, even if we live a hundred years.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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Statue of monkeys There are many complicated issues that we confront daily. With many of these issues we are asked to be either ‘for’ or ‘against’. We seem to live in a world of extremes.

I think most of us live somewhere between yes and no most of the time. We are not creatures of black or white. It’s just not that simple.

Life’s decisions are largely a grey area. Reality is more of a compromise than a checkbox. It’s very difficult to be totally for something, or totally against it. Most people just can’t feel that extreme about anything.

I try to make my decisions on a case by case basis. I live in the grey area of being honest with myself. There are no easy answers in this life, and that includes blanket statements about belief.

-Posted by Brad Black, EO’s co-founder and co-CEO

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