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Acts of Joy

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Big Joy Science Project

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Acts of Joy

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Big Joy Science Project

An Offering of Poetry

with David Whyte

Subtitles Available!

What you'll learn

Fall forwards into your life against what you think is a barrier or a doorway. Have faith in where you’re being invited, even by your own troubles and your own sorrows. See them as a kind of compassionate invitation to your own integration and eventually what we understand as joy and happiness.” 


In this intimate, generous, and insightful session with internationally celebrated poet David Whyte, we explore how joy may be discovered within our most subtle, often unspoken inner experiences of fundamental elements of our fleeting lives:  light, darkness, change, death, friendship and more.  

David seamlessly weaves personal reflections, insights, encouragements, and commentary with recitations of Blessing for the Morning Light, Start Close In, and The Bell and The Blackbird.

About the speakers

David Whyte

David Whyte grew up with a strong, imaginative influence from his Irish mother among the hills and valleys of his father’s Yorkshire. He now makes his home in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. The author of eleven books of poetry and four books of prose, David Whyte holds a degree in Marine Zoology and has traveled extensively, including living and working as a naturalist guide in the Galapagos Islands and leading anthropological and natural history expeditions in the Andes, Amazon, and Himalaya. He brings this wealth of experience to his poetry, lectures, and workshops. David Whyte is one of the few poets to take his perspectives on creativity into the field of organizational development, where he works with many European, American, and international companies. He is the recipient of two honorary degrees: from Neumann College in Pennsylvania and Royal Roads University in Victoria, British Columbia.

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  • “The words “fall forward into your life against what you think is a barrier or a doorway “felt like the wellspring of deep knowing to me on this early chill of autumn moving into winter, and I felt an opening sentence. I’m thankful to you David and to Joe O’Donohue

  • Listening to David Whyte magnified my joy this morning. Thank you to him and to all those who made it possible.

  • A lovely morning call to remember that what brings joy is the mere pure living, the courage to open to our vulnerability and embracing the mystery of life, in its full. Thank you David

  • I was first introduced to David Whyte at Kripalu many years ago . He is brilliant, gorgeous and such a great teacher, poet and human entity. I have watched and listened to this particular video 5x’s. It truly resonating with me as I have just lost a “foundational friend” in my own life. It was a privilege to encounter The Joy Summit and hear David again. Thank You!!!!!

  • What would be a joy summit without a mandolin on the background ? =)
    Joking aside, I was touched harshly by the first step that is the one we do’nt want to do. Thanks for sharing this poetic vision.

    • A Joy Summit = Mandolin

      A truism, dear Berengere.
      I have entertained the sweet vision of Mr. Whyte playing his fiddle at one of his event/sessions a few times over the past two years.
      A lovely vision indeed.
      I’m just wanting to give voice to the vision, because I believe in magic and I appreciate your joke.
      Teehee ! ! ! Geraldine

  • One of my favorite things about Life is its offering Opportunity to learn/explore/know of things about which we were ignorant just yesterday. I am so grateful to have been introduced to David Whyte….

  • David’s poetry was insightful. His explanations an expansion of his thoughts in writing the poetry were very meaningful. I enjoyed this session, thank you.

  • Thank you, David! You have captured so well the “radiance” of the red wing black bird’s call, which has always ignited that spark of the Divine in my heart. Creation does indeed cry out “Alleluia!” if we only stop to listen. Your poem has touched my soul. Blessings.

  • Beautiful! Thank you David for creating an opportunity to be transported, again. I first came across your work with a reading we offered at the ceremony of our mother’s passing. The close up lived experience of loss and love in your work is stunningly resonant!

  • Thank You, David for your beautiful and meaningful words. I suddenly lost my life partner of 10 years just 6 weeks ago when we were about to have 3 weeks holiday together and planning retirement next year. Alone now, and lost in my life, your words have been both meaningful and of comfort to me.

  • Many thanks, David, for such inspiring thoughts and remarkable poetry. They’ve really resonated deeply inside me. Totally absorbed in reflexion!

  • Much gratitude to you, David, for your beautiful and meaningful words. You have reminded me to start close in with the step that I don’t want to take. With a bow…..

  • Thank you for share your offering of poetry. A beautiful gifth I will remember with respect and joy.

  • Thank you so much David for your beautiful, gentleness, and warmhearted wisdoms and soul moving poetry. “The ability to be found by the world and by the miraculous nature of the world, and when we give up our misnaming of creation we find that creation comes to find us, and gives us a much deeper, profounder more foundational name that we ever could imagine.” – David Whyte Beannacht Leat and abundant joys. from a grateful heart.

  • Very much appreciated present, David Whyte! I’m delighted to have allowed myself to indulge by listening to you for a 2nd time here, the beauty of the words is irresistible… (Funny, I started Day 4 with you and did not know I’ll close with you, in passing!!!) Thank you! My heart overflows with joy.
    Love and blessings. Namasté!

  • There’s something about David and how he is able to put words together that touch the very core of my soul and I am humbly grateful to receive his poetry. Humanity is blessed to have him walking with us on this journey. Thank you David!

  • Thank you for sharing your experience. Your words carry with it the possibility for me to live life as I feel it. As Joni Mitchell shared in one of her songs. “ I really don’t know life at all”. I know this is true and feel human beings in great part have strayed far away from our home. Our inherent wisdom before all the ludicrous conditions spewed at us for generations of people being misled like sheep down a dark and narrow path.

    I’ve searched blindly to find my voice, to recognize my inherent value and
    have been led astray, only to discover that I am lost, confused, anxious, sad and depressed.
    The times I’ve had the wherewithal to weather the storms, have shown me that my over and over my value as an individual, has nothing to do with my outward appearance or what I’ve have been conditioned to believe is my identity.
    The letting go, reaching into the heart of the matter and listening to the wisdom shared by you and everyone here in this Summit. Has come to me, as perhaps you felt the Red-Wing Blackbird and your wife’s sounding the bell 🔔 at the same time, while you were experiencing the vibrations of a new season coming alive within you
    I don’t know if what I’m saying makes sense, or the way I recognized the truth and light of your observations is what you meant.
    The truth is l feel at once calmer, more centered and less concerned with all my shortcomings and I believe is wrong with me. I am hopeful that as I lay my defenses to rest. My inherent wisdom will have the room it needs to develop, grow and thrive in time like the seasons that come and go.
    Thank you 🙏

  • Wow, David blown away-thank you or shall I say-Go raibh maith agat-so much joy in these wonderful poems. I am a huge John O’Donohue fan being Irish myself. I came to John’s work by accident, through my beloved sister-who passed away suddenly like John. You have brought me close to her and to John through these beautiful words. A hundred thousand welcomes to you-cead mile failte- so much joy felt here in the middle of the night listening to your haunting voice. 🙏

  • Wow, David! So beautiful talk… I am inspired by your talk. Sending you Mabuhay greetings from the Philippines!

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