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Josh Misner, PhD

Mindful Living in a Distracted World

Author

Josh "Dr. J" Misner

Mindfulness researcher, author of Put the F**king Phone Down

Three in the Morning

A lot has transpired in the last two weeks since I blogged here. We left Poland, had to skip traversing the Kiel Canal in Germany because of technical difficulties (with the canal, not the ship, thankfully), spent about 6 days in Lisbon, Portugal and Cádiz, Spain, and now, we’re crossing the Mediterranean just north of Algiers.

I have some catching up to do on recording our experiences in Lisbon and Cádiz, but for now, I wanted to post a poem I penned a couple of nights ago while battling insomnia. Continue reading “Three in the Morning”

Peeking Behind the Iron Curtain

When I was a kid, living my best parachute pants-clad life in the 1980s, I was a devout fan of Mad Magazine.

My fandom, of course, was fueled primarily by my love of the cartoon, Spy vs. Spy.

Continue reading “Peeking Behind the Iron Curtain”

Survival By Accident: Reflections on Gdansk

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As I sit up in bed on our ship, the MV World Odyssey, Polish food in my belly and a hint of Dubrowka bison grass vodka in my veins, I cannot help but reflect on what an incredibly profound day today has been.

Today was my first field class, meaning that I took one of my three communication courses for Semester at Sea on a “field trip” of sorts, this time my intercultural communication class on an exploration of the impact of the Holocaust on the people of Gdańsk, Poland. Continue reading “Survival By Accident: Reflections on Gdansk”

Berlin: The Character of a City

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I’ve always felt like cities have a character about them. Growing up in Spokane, we all talked about our city’s character; it was the big city with a small town mindset. Even to this day, it has that feel to it, for the most part.

In Reykjavik, it was all about the environment. Iceland is, by far, one of the cleanest countries I’ve ever been to, and their commitment to zero emissions and waste is evident in every single thing they do. In fact, I’d say that’s probably their defining feature and what they seem most proud of.

In Bergen, it was their heritage and way of life. Everywhere we went, everyone we saw, and everything we were surrounded by was decidedly Norwegian. Even the ancient wooden stave we visited, though it had the emblems of Christianity and all the influence that comes with that, those symbols were overpowered by the Viking and Nordic influences of old. Continue reading “Berlin: The Character of a City”

The Power of Kindness in Any Language

I didn’t know what picture to insert, so here’s a pretty sunset over Krakow.

Before our plane landed in Reykjavik, the first stop on our 15-country, 4-continent adventure, I had downloaded language packs for each country we had planned on visiting via Google Translate.

As we sat on the plane, with about 20 minutes before landing, I pulled up the app and immediately looked up a translation for one phrase, which I consider the most important universal symbol of kindness and connection: THANK YOU. Continue reading “The Power of Kindness in Any Language”

Stories of Hope: Balancing the Scales of Morality

WARNING: This post contains Nazi emblems and imagery of graphic violence.

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Last night, I couldn’t sleep. Each time my head hit the pillow and my eyelids fell shut, all I could see were the images from Auschwitz, while my imagination ran roughshod with  nightmarish stories emerging from the shadows of the past.

Moments like this were made for melatonin.

Today’s quest was to continue our exploration of the stories from the Holocaust; however, our agenda remarkably contrasted with that of yesterday’s, for today, our destination was Oskar Schindler’s factory. Continue reading “Stories of Hope: Balancing the Scales of Morality”

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