Category Archives: GrandpaCaleb

“Righteous Prick” Hug Nation Sept 11, 2012

1st Hug post-Burning Man

It is long video, and it is deep…but I came back from Burning Man with a more powerful vision than ever before. We are all Messiahs. Our Heroes Journey is to greet each task at hand by being Present – with Integrity – aligned with Love.

I step into a new chapter of power. I open to a new level of vulnerability.  I Love you.

Includes reflections on:
Grandpa Caleb (, Pupose, Westboro Baptists, Burning Man Sexual Assault, & living our Purpose.

“Be Present. Have Integrity. Align with Love.”

Wedding photos by Ben Indyck and Andy Cooper

TEDx Perfection

My TEDx talk was a smashing success. I felt excited, not nervous, on the day of. When I hit the stage I fell into the flow. I had to fight back tears a couple times, but otherwise felt totally in the zone and channeling Love. It was an honor to share Grandpa.

When I finished, the crowd gave me (and Grandpa) a standing ovation. My parents were there to see it – and feel the love, too.
It was an experience I’ll never forget.
(Archive should be online within the month.)
Sharing "Gratitude, Gifting, & Grandpa" at TEDx

“Xmas, Santa, Christ, & Coke” – Hug Nation Nov 29, 2011

Yuletide ramblings about the consumer culture of Xmas and an attempt to refocus on Gifting & the birth of Christ Consciousness within us all.

Neighborhood boy done good

Sign on my childhood church:

notice in the local paper:
Tonight's talk

my talk:

Talking to my childhood church on June 25, 2011. (My “first sermon” said someone in attendance.)

More on Pronoia, see Rob Brezneys’ ( Huge thanks to Grandpa ( & Jacob ( who inspired big parts of the talk.

Helping People

Caleb & John (@Virtual Grace, precursor to HugNation)

“I feel something deep inside that says whatever time you have left, give yourself to loving people and helping people.”
–Rev. Caleb Shikles

Saturday night, I was driving while the sun was setting. I was in a great mood and reflecting on how wonderful my day had been.
But for a moment I couldn’t remember what I had done all day.

In the morning I visited my parents and helped with babysitting my nephews. Caleb was a handful – but I managed to keep him pretty busy. We played catch, chase, and wrestled. He only made his little brother cry twice. And I only made Caleb cry twice.
As I left my mom was very thankful – but I shrugged it off. I wasn’t there out of obligation, I was there by choice!

Later I visited my friend Edwerd. I set him up a blog last week and he needed some help with uploading and posting photos. After I gave him a tutorial he thanked me profusely. I appreciated the gesture, but realized that it was truly *my* pleasure. My actions were motivated by a kind of selfishness: I am at a point in my life where if I have free time, I would LOVE to spend it helping someone I love.

Driving home from Edwerd’s, I dropped by a friend’s house who mentioned they needed to borrow my hair clippers. (I had put them in the car earlier – I don’t always drive around ready to trim people’s necks.)

By the time I was driving home in the sunset, I had spent the bulk of my day helping people. And contrary to feeling depleted, I felt warm and energized. Grandpa’s words replayed in my head. Was I “getting it” finally??

When I called my mom later in the eve, she reflected on how much I have changed recently in that regard. “We used to hate asking you for anything,” she said. “If we needed a ride to the airport, you would do it grudgingly and make it very clear that you had things to do. But lately you’ve spent full days helping us with the computer and it feels like you are happily present.”

I’m still wrapping my head around this: Help people=good day. Could it be that simple?

I recently heard about a study where they looked at happiness trends. They found that once you get your basic needs met, getting more stuff did not meaningfully affect a person’s happiness. The one thing they found that DID affect people’s happiness was by GIVING more.
How’s that for turning the model on it’s head? We spend all our energy trying to get stuff. And the only thing that will really make us happy is to give.

Later that night another friend sent me an email asking if they could borrow my photo studio. After making sure I was free, my thought was, “SWEET! It’s gonna be another great day!”


**To hear Grandpa’s quote, watch the first minute of the video at the top of**