Sacred Activism and the Media

RTM is organizing a couple of sessions at this weekend's Sacred Activism conference in Lynnwood, WA.

The first is a panel on Media and the Good Life, which I'm moderating. Panelists are YES! Magazine managing editor Sarah van Gelder, and independent filmmaker Velcrow Ripper, director of Scared Sacred and the forthcoming Fierce Light.

I'm also co-presenting (with Kaliya Hamlin of Identity Woman) a workshop on media activism and using technology for progressive social networking.

Conference presenters also include Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Cindy Sheehan, and others. Prof. David Domke and Rev. Lisa Domke will present a panel on the use and abuse of religious discourse in contemporary American politics.

Finally, we've been able to arrange a last-minute Mothers' Day screening of Velcrow's wonderful (and Genie-award winning) documentary Scared Sacred:

8pm, Sunday May 14
Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center
17th Ave and Yesler, Seattle (Central District)
$5 suggested donation; proceeds after costs benefit the artist

Screening introduced by filmmaker Velcrow Ripper

In a world teetering on the edge of self-destruction, award-winning filmmaker Velcrow Ripper sets out on a unique pilgrimage. Visiting the 'Ground Zeros' of the planet, he asks if it's possible to find hope in the darkest moments of human history.

Ripper travels to the minefields of Cambodia; war-torn Afghanistan; the toxic wasteland of Bhopal; post-9/11 New York; Bosnia; Hiroshima; Israel and Palestine. This powerful documentary captures his five-year odyssey to discover if humanity can transform the 'scared' into the 'sacred'.

Deep in the jungles of Cambodia, Ripper meets Aki Ra, a child soldier forced to lay landmines for the Khmer Rouge. Today Aki wanders his ravaged country with a simple wooden stick, decommissioning thousands of mines each year. In the shattered land of Afghanistan, Ripper searches for a Sufi musician who was banned from performing or even listening to music, by the reign of fundamentalism. The musician discovered a way out: he filled his house with songbirds. In each Ground Zero, he unearths unforgettable stories of survival, of ritual, resilience and recovery.

ScaredSacred deftly weaves together stunning footage with haunting memories, inspirational stories, and an evocative soundscape. Featuring an engaging, first-person narrative, this film is an exquisite portrait of a search for meaning in times of turmoil, a luminous gift to a world in shadows.

The media's job is to interest the public in the public interest. -John Dewey