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The Wonder Dome

Author: Andy Cahill

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Welcome to The Wonder Dome. On this podcast, I explore the question “what is your fiercest hope for humanity?” through conversations with an incredible array of practitioners from across disciplines, including coaches, artists, entrepreneurs, healers, scientists, philosophers, psychologists, and organizational leaders. All of these people are working at the edge of what’s possible for humanity, striving to help us all become more resilient, adaptive, creative, and compassionate.
66 Episodes
As a Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory University's School of Medicine, Dr. Brian Dias seeks to understand how our neurobiology, physiology, and our psyches are impacted by stress and trauma, and how parental legacies of stress and trauma influence future generations. Today, we focus on the research that Brian and his team are doing around the remarkable field of epigenetics, the process by which genes in our DNA turn “on'“ or “off,” and the triggers that cause them to do so. What’s amazing to me is that before we were even a gleam in the metaphorical eye of our parents, things that happened to them can show up in our DNA. These impacts, which can be both beneficial and traumatic, are carried forward through the sperm and egg cells that eventually come to make the embryo that becomes the multicellular complexity that is you and I.Brian is very careful not to jump to any outsize conclusions about what the research might tell us, but he's also open to exploring what might be possible for us as a species if we begin to understand these legacies of both intergenerational trauma and intergenerational gifts. He uses the metaphor of ‘The Book of Life’ to point towards the incredibly rich depth and complexity encoded in this intergenerational story.By understanding and interpreting our own individual chapters in this infinite book, and by seeing the greater story we are all a part of, we can begin to heal from and let go of the traumas that no longer belong to us. From there, we can begin to embrace the greatest and best of who we are.Get Connected:The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook The Sins of the Father:'Memories' pass between generations: 10 Most Important Discoveries of 2014: more at
Elizabeth Markle is the co-founder and executive director of Open Source Wellness, bringing the ethos of ‘community as medicine’ into the modern healthcare system. She's a licensed psychologist, Ph.D., and researcher who's devoted her attention to understanding what makes communities thrive. She is also a teacher at the California Institute of Integral Studies, focusing on community mental health.In addition to all this, Liz is a member of and proponent of community living, co-housing, and cohabitation, which may remind you of my previous guest, Chris Herndon. This is a wonderful part two to my conversation with Chris around what it actually means for us to come together in ways that allow us to live together and learn from each other.Liz has a wonderful firsthand perspective as someone who lives in co-housing and secondhand as someone who researches and teaches others to connect with each other in the name of healing and growth. This is a powerful, fun, enriching conversation in that spirit.Get Connected:The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook with Liz:Open Source to my conversation on community living with Chris Herndon:
Richard Barrett is a provocateur of human potential. He has committed his life to helping the human species evolve. And, if I’m honest with myself, I expected him to be a solemn elder espousing wisdom from up on high. But he surprised me by bringing a lovely joie de vivre to our conversation, spiced with a dash of "the devil may care" attitude. As I reflect back, it’s clear to me that this energy serves as a wonderful complement to the deep work he's doing in the world. The work of advancing the evolution of human consciousness on a global scale. I suppose you have to be pretty damn playful if you're working at that level :-)Through the Barrett Academy for the Advancement of Human Values and the Humanity Awareness Initiative, Richard explores what it means for our individual and collective consciousness to continue to evolve as we meet the realities of today and envision beautiful futures for tomorrow. His aim is to help more people reach the level of consciousness where we’re aware of ourselves as one human species, making choices that will ripple across nations and ultimately into our collective civilization and biosphere.As you listen, I hope you get a taste of what it is to relate to yourself and your place in the world with this level of dynamism and complexity. A truer sense of what it is to be alive at this moment on Earth, and of what we're all capable of if we commit ourselves to the lifelong journey of growth and evolution.Get Connected:The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook with
My conversation with Netaly Ophir Flint was an exciting meeting of multiple worlds. She and I have worked together as part of a leadership development organization called KONU that she helps to lead. She's an amazing consultant, coach, teacher, and entrepreneur, and she also has an incredible personal journey.Our conversation centers around our shared passion for adaptive leadership, a revolutionary approach to leadership that's rooted in a deeper understanding of how change actually happens. It was pioneered by Ron Heifetz at the Harvard Kennedy School and has been taken up by an incredible number of amazing practitioners around the world. And it's a core piece of the work that we do together at KONU.To get there, we explore Netaly’s purposeful, personal journey into her identity as a leader who builds bridges between worlds, helping Jewish people around the world imagine and live into a common history and identity. As both Israeli-Jew and an American-Jew, Netaly has developed a unique ability to bridge diverse worlds as she works to build this vibrant global network.If you've been sitting with the changes that this year has forced, and you've been wondering where and how to go next, this conversation has something for you.Get Connected:The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook HeifetzCenter for Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy SchoolConnect with Netaly on LinkedIn
My guest today is the singular Raj Sisodia, a founding member of the Conscious Capitalism movement and co-author of the book by the same name, along with Whole Foods founder John Mackey. Raj is a prolific author who has written a number of books, but his most recent one, The Healing Organization, is the centerpiece for our conversation.Raj makes a powerful case for a deeper orientation in our global economic systems. An orientation towards people, purpose, and impact, where profit might follow as a wonderful bonus, but is not the name of the game. He asks what it is to be an organization that's not only doing good in the world but is actually healing the world? As an individual modeling change from within for himself, Raj is pointing us towards a path of collective change from within the systems we've already built. To build something new inside of something old. To do business in a way that actually heals ourselves and the world.Get Connected:The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook Mentioned in this Episode:Conscious Capitalism: Healing Organization: Leadership: with
Wesley Morris is a pastor, facilitator, and mentor. He extends an invitation for all of us to walk towards the parts of life that cause us the most fear or uncertainty. Towards the deeper, emergent truth waiting for us in the so-called “darkness.”Wesley is the director of programs and strategy for the Southern Vision Alliance, working with on-the-ground activists who are facing systemic racism all over the South. These are people working with the question, How do we evolve our society so that we can move past systemic racism and truly reach a place of freedom for all people?Together, we explore the question of what it is for us to face the “darkness” of our life. To face those places we think we know so that we can, in fact, step in the direction of the unknown in service of our best self. In service of wonder. In service of connection with each other. All of this rests on the possibility of becoming ever more aware that we are not in control of life. We are life. The more we allow life to express, the more that possibility for healing, growth, for change, for what Wesley calls “unconditional love,  belief, and identity” can emerge.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook southernvision.orgWesley's Facebook Wesley's LinkedIn
Brad Rowe is doing incredible work at the forefront of cannabis policy and research. He is committed to making this emerging domain of entrepreneurship a space where people who have faced the worst injustices of the war on drugs have access to the entrepreneurial upsides of the legalization of cannabis.In addition to his own venture, Brad is a lecturer in Public Policy at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs. He has also worked for over a decade with homeless populations and homeless job seekers, teaching them courses in stress management, goal setting, and relapse prevention. Before all of this, Brad had a remarkable, multifaceted career in Hollywood, including the GLAAD Media Award-winning film Shelter.We explore all of that together, and the ways in which his early work as an actor and his current work as a policymaker actually weave together into a greater coherent whole.By hearing Brad’s story, I hope you’ll tune into the beautiful reality that life will never be a linear journey. If you listen to your curiosity, follow the questions that are waiting for you, and pay deep attention to the lives of everyone around you - especially those lives that culture might tell you to ignore - the possibility for discovering your own path can truly emerge.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook rowepolicymedia.comConnect with Brad
Ashley Munday is the director of Thrive by SweetRush. SweetRush Inc. is a global training and development firm where Ashley leads the Thrive team of culture and leadership consultants. She leads an expert team of culture and leadership consultants. She and her amazing team help guide clients to create human-centered cultures where authentic purpose becomes the beating heart of whatever else that organization does in the world.As you'll hear in this conversation, Ashley is a deeply dynamic, life-loving person who has spent her life's work deepening into the questions of what it means to thrive in the world, and how purpose can help serve as an anchor for our thriving.She stands for the power of asking the questions that most of us simply aren't given permission - or the invitation - to ask. For the deep, foundational relevance of exploring purpose and meaning in a world often more concerned with fitting in. For the beauty of music, arts, and culture to reframe our everyday experience. Above all, for the power of falling in love with life. The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook Culture in Larger Organizations: by SweetRush: Academy for the Advancement of Human Values: barrettacademy.comConnect with Ashley
Hana Ramat has a fascinating background in psychology, psychotherapy, mindfulness, and human development. Over the past 10+ years, she's worked with folks of all ages and backgrounds; from adults with severe and persistent mental illness at Bellevue Hospital in New York to children at Albert Einstein's College of Medicine’s early childhood center, and many in between.Most recently, she’s shifted her attention to work with women who are struggling through life and are navigating a journey to self-actualization. She helps them reckon with and move through the unique challenges that women face as they navigate a patriarchal culture that prizes dominance, relentless competition, and emotional repression. At the root of her work is the invitation for women (and, really, for all of us) to step into their bodies and into the pleasure and power that comes with being alive, without shame. The pleasure of love, romance, and sex. The power of being a leader and claiming space in the world. The way pleasure and power work together to allow for healing, wholeness, and resilient inner strength.If you care at all about a world where women thrive, and a world where all of us - men, women, and everyone else along the gender spectrum - have access to more of the innate feminine energy and the capacities and sensitivities that come with that, then this conversation is for you.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook more about Hana: 
My guest today is Amer Jandali, an energizing, creative human being who brings together a variety of different disciplines to imagine a world where a true human future is possible. A world in which we have not only tackled the challenge of climate change, but actually built a beautiful, more inclusive, more energizing - both metaphorically, but literally in the sense of where we get our energy, our fuel, our food - world where everyone can thrive.He's the founder of a new social design firm called Future Meets Present, and they're doing incredible work to help us see what's possible on the other side of the climate crisis that we're facing right now. He brings a natural optimism and enthusiasm to these questions of existence, survival, and thriving, and he's also just a wonderfully heartfelt human being who has dedicated his life to bring people together.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook
Dr. Jeffrey Hull has been something of a “mentor at-a-distance” for me. His book, Flex: The Art and Science of Leadership in a Changing World, provided a framework for leadership that I had an intuitive sense for but didn’t quite know how to describe. Reading his book was an ‘a-ha!’ moment for me. I hadn't heard anyone else put into words in the way that he did. So having him on the show and exploring with him first-hand was a real privilege.His book explores the distinction between alpha leadership and beta leadership. Beta leadership is a way of leading that allows for more flexibility, inclusivity, warmth, and perspective-taking. Jeff compels leaders who are limited by an ‘alpha-only’ approach to take a wider stance, to develop the emotional and intellectual agility to either lead from beta, or step back so that beta leaders can step forward when they’re most needed.However, even the binary between alpha and beta is a kind of constraint. Jeff named that binary limitation in our conversation, and we started to dive more deeply into the question of what it is to be a meta leader. A meta leader is someone who is neither alpha nor beta. Someone who draws from all of the different perspectives available so that they can show up in a way that is in service of the greatest good.If you care at all about leadership, human development, about what it is to meet the current moment with agility, grace, new perspectives, and a deeper sense of what's possible for our collective future, then this conversation is for you.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook more of Jeff's work at JeffreyHull.comCheck out his book, Flex
Brooke Lavelle is the co-founder and president of the Courage of Care Coalition, a nonprofit that helps people from across cultures, backgrounds, and identities work together at the intersection of compassionate inquiry, self-discovery, mindfulness, and spirituality.Our conversation today dives into the question of what it is for us to be together, not in spite of our differences, but rather, as a direct extension of and integration of our differences. Coming together in a way that allows each of us to be who we uniquely are, while also being in true community with other people who have their own story, journey, and identities.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook
Liz Moyer Benferhat is a healer with a big question and a big dream: How do we heal ourselves collectively in the face of the damage and change that our entire planet is facing as our climate and culture shifts? How do we take care of each other and care for the world that we are a part of? Her dream is that we find a way to answer those questions through our individual journeys of healing, which can become our collective journey.Liz draws from an incredibly rich and deep set of practices and disciplines. She has a background in systems design, applied research, and international sustainable development. She also has deep lived experience facilitating community-based approaches to emotional healing and relational consciousness. From psychology to spirituality to the human body, Liz brings together all of these elements to create spaces where people can come together, grieve for what they've lost, and find a way forward in the face of all that we still have to reckon with.This conversation is a beautiful inquiry into what collective healing is. You'll hear us working with that edge because it's something that has never been done on a global scale before and that's how big Liz's dream is.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook​EPISODE #53 NOTES Circle Training: Mini Training: Facebook: Instagram: YouTube:
David Sauvage is an empath, deeply attuned to the emotional states of people around him. He's best known for his performance art doing intuitive readings in front of audiences. His journey towards embracing his abilities - not only to understand other people's emotions but also to help them understand their own - is a remarkable one, fraught with challenges, struggle, loss. And, ultimately, a humble embrace of all the things he thought he was meant to run from.This resonates deeply with me. Whenever I find myself trying to repress or distance myself from my emotions, the outcomes are never good. David's invitation in this conversation is to confront that which we're most afraid of, or that which causes us the most pain. In a world so committed to comfort, convenience, and surface harmony, this deeply counter-cultural stance has the power to transform who we are.If you care at all about expressing yourself fully and helping others do the same, this conversation is for you. I can't wait for you to get a taste of what becomes possible as David and I enter the church of what wants to happen.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook​EPISODE #52 NOTESDavid featured in The GuardianHealing Heals the Healer Too by David SauvageEmpath
Nadja Taranczewski is a transformational coach, and I can attest firsthand to the power and impact of her work. I did two coaching sessions with Nadja a year ago and I still notice the impact of those sessions literally almost every day. She is truly someone who knows how to hold a transformative space. She navigates the process of taking a possibility and getting it all the way down to the cellular level with such grace and commitment.Our conversation today primarily explores what she's doing with CU*money, and the ways in which we have built for ourselves a culture that holds up money as the golden ticket when it is, in fact, the golden cage. We ask, what might it mean to shift to a world where resources, money, time, attention, and energy all start to converge where they’re most needed. A world where we are consciously connected to each other. A world where we live in what Nadja calls a conscious tribe.This conversation is important to me because of the impact Nadja has had in my life, and I trust she’ll impact yours, either by listening to this conversation or going deeper into the work that she's doing in the world. She works to help people live with more ability to see themselves, to be compassionate towards themselves and others, to take ownership over their life, and to engage in truly deep and open dialogue with each other in service of a more conscious world.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook #51
Well, it's hard to believe it, but it's been one year since I’ve launched The Wonder Dome. It was shortly after we went into lockdown here in the States, in April of 2020. It's now April 2021, and you are about to listen to the 50th episode.Today’s guests are no strangers to The Wonder Dome. They’re three distinctly talented, distinctly unique, and yet also deeply connected human beings: Francis Briers (Ep 10), Cyrus Sharad (Ep 12), and Lee Chambers (Ep 39). As you listen in, you'll hear incredibly deep themes around wellness, purpose, reality, meaning, and identity naturally emerge in our conversationIt felt like the perfect way to celebrate 50 incredible conversations with incredible humans by bringing some of these incredible humans together. I hope that wherever you are right now, there is someplace for you to anchor your hope and some source of fierceness to tap into that will help carry you through all of the challenges still to come.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook with Cyrus on CyrusShahrad.comConnect with Lee on LeeChambers.orgConnect with Francis on
Pearl Bates is an incredibly talented visual artist. John Cleese, of Monty Python fame, has referred to her art as some of the most original work he's ever seen. That's no understatement. It takes inspiration from all kinds of places: street style, haute couture, music, film, theater, dance, nature. These incredible ingredients come together in Pearl's work to produce sensual, atmospheric, magically real paintings, drawings, and illustrations that evoke emotion, intensity, and aliveness.Pearl has exhibited her artwork all over the world, from fashion illustrations, to children’s works, to city murals. As you’re listening, I highly encourage you to check out Pearl’s incredible portfolio. As you hear her discuss her devotional approach to creativity, you’ll also be able to see and feel the aliveness that comes through her art. Truly special stuff.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook #49 NOTESListen to my conversation with Francis
Tochi Onyebuchi is the award-winning author of several works of speculative fiction. His most recent novel, Riot Baby, strikes at the heart of our collective reckoning with systemic racism. It is a searing, powerful, and deeply insightful take on what it is to be Black in America, on our prison industrial complex, on what it is to have power and freedom.The title of this episode is a subtle nod to the science fiction that influenced Tochi’s own writing. It also evokes the powers of Ella, one of the book’s main protagonists. Riot Baby explores the question of what a young Black girl like Ella would do if she grew up to discover she had powers far beyond what most of us could imagine. It's an incredible work of fiction that brings to life the moment in a way that no other book I've read right now is doing. Tochi is a deeply thoughtful human being who has some real wisdom to share on how we move in this world of ours. On how we live, on how we connect. If you care at all about questions of systemic racism, systemic injustice, on what it is to reach reconciliation - if that's even possible as a country as a result of our long history and legacy of slavery and racial oppression - then this conversation is for you.p.s. and be sure to look for Tochi’s forthcoming work of non-fiction (S)kinfolk, which speaks to Tochi’s own emotional and intellectual journey through his own education in Blackness. You can pre-order it here.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook #48 NOTESCheck out all of Tochi’s writings hereAmericanah by Chimamanda Ngozi
If you care about what it means to skillfully and meaningfully navigate inter-group conflict towards resolution, connection, and new possibility, then this conversation is for you. Gabe Wilson is the founder of Developmental Design. He's a leadership coach and organizational consultant, and he specializes in diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.He is also the co-author of Compassionate Conversations: How to Speak and Listen from the Heart. If you’ve been with The Wonder Dome for a while, then you’ve heard Episode 25 and my interview with Kim Loh, who co-wrote the book with Gabe and Diane Musho Hamilton.Gabe and I dive in right where my conversation with Kim ended: the intimacy that exists at the heart of conflict. Within a conflict, possibilities exist for new ground to emerge, new foundations that might actually bring us closer together. But we only get there by understanding what makes us distinct.Gabe calls this work Freedom and Fairness. Together, we explore what it means to cultivate that freedom and fairness in diverse inter-group contexts that hold seemingly competing agendas, histories, and visions for the future. The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook #47 NOTEShttp://developmental.designCompassionate Conversations by Hamilton, Wilson, and Loh#25 Finding Intimacy at the Heart of Conflict (with Kim Loh)freedomandfairness.coGabe's LinkedIn
Tai Sunnanon is a whirling dervish of a human, incredibly energetic, driven, persistent, intelligent, creative, and caring. He's the founder and CEO of Strategic Insights Group, a mission-driven consulting firm based out of LA. He's a life coach and executive coach. He's a second lieutenant in the United States Air Force. He is involved with COVID vaccine distribution across Southern California.And frankly, all of that is just the tip of the iceberg!  He has spent the past 25+ years traveling, teaching, and making a difference in the lives of everyone he meets.But all of that's just his external resume, as Tai likes to call it. He also has this wonderful idea of the internal resume, the journey that each of us go on to become healed and whole.We first met at Harvard while I was in my master’s program. Tai was a doctoral student and a teaching assistant for one of my core courses. I sensed that he was a person of deep integrity and deep intensity. But what I wasn't aware of was how driven he had been to escape his past rather than to face it. Eventually, Tai turned to meet his past, embrace it, and become who he was called to be. He shares some of that journey here in this wonderfully deep, enriching human-first conversation.The Wonder Dome Newsletter​Follow Andy on Twitter​Like us on Facebook #46 NOTESStrategic Insights GroupKatsushika HokusaiConnect with Tai on
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