INTRODUCTION

Though the man was seated in the middle of a room, surrounded by hundreds of colleagues, he managed to make piercing eye contact with me as he leaned slightly forward and said slowly, deliberately, and unwaveringly, “What I want from you is that I need to feel completely different than I feel right now, and I don’t want to have to do anything about it.”

He is not alone.

Although I have formally been involved in social change, social justice, environmental justice, and trauma work for more than thirty years, I am finding myself amid a landscape that is, at times, unrecognizable. Not in the content—suffering has been around for a long time, of course—but in the depth and breadth of the pain, despair, and overwhelm so many folks throughout ...

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