Books permit us to voyage through time, to tap the wisdom of our ancestors. The library connects us with the insight and knowledge, painfully extracted from Nature, of the greatest minds that ever were, with the best teachers, drawn from the entire planet and from all our history, to instruct us without tiring, and to inspire us to make our own contribution to the collective knowledge of the human species. I think the health of our civilization, the depth of our awareness about the underpinnings of our culture and our concern for the future can all be tested by how well we support our libraries.
— Carl Sagan

At the convergence of the Placemaking and the Little Free Library Movements are Helping Friendly Book Stands. Helping Friendly Book Stands capitalize on local community's assets, inspiration, and potential, with the intention of creating free public book sharing spaces that promote conscious, connected communities.  

 

Goals  

  • Elevate the free public book exchange movement to the level of an art form by commissioning artists and designers to create stunning, one-of-a-kind urban art installations for books. 
  • Develop and produce a modular  ‘Helping Friendly Book Place Kit” that we can use to build as many free libraries as we can. 
  • Activate conscious, connected communities around the shared values of knowledge and reading. 
  • Make an impression on the cultural landscape of Dallas.
  • Create more opportunities to discover through books the necessary curiosity to begin the Quest for the Secrets of Eternal Joy and Never Ending Splendor.
 

Purpose

To help reverse the trend toward a culture of ignorance in the age of the smartphone by fostering an increase in the sharing of knowledge and insight through the exchange of books and ideas in local communities. 

Just as Dallas is working to rebuild a crumbling system of outdated roadways and gas lines, and address the food desert by adding gardens and grocery stores, so are we addressing the city’s literacy infrastructure and cultural systems.  

By connecting words, people, books and cultural experiences in never-before-seen ways and unexpected places, we can help seed and instill strong and exciting experiences of meaning.  In an era of rapidly expanding digital technology, the tactile, personal world remains.

The literal, visceral experience of unexpectedly discovering a book that feels like the universe meant it just for you is a wonderfully impactful experience.  Rare as it may be, this experience is not impossible to create for people, and experiences of this kind can have the power to jostle the mind into the early stages of awakening.  

 

Photos from the Book Place

 

the first helping friendly book place

Sage Cleansing and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
12.13.14
Boxwood Tap+Grill Dallas, TX


"Ladies and Gentlemen,

The Helping Friendly Book Club is on a quest to discover the ancient Secrets of Eternal Joy and Neverending Splendor.  That quest has led us here, to today, to this very moment, as we welcome the first ever Helping Friendly Little Free Library to the Uptown neighborhood.

The ideal and purpose of all Helping Friendly endeavors is to illuminate curiosity for the purpose of forward motion. Without curiosity, willingness to learn is nonexistent.  Curiosity is a first step, a prerequisite to beginning your own quest to discover the ancient secrets to eternal joy and never ending splendor.  

When we say Forward Motion we mean something similar to the idea of following your Dharma, or Spiritual Phyllotaxis.  When you follow your curiosity, growth is a pattern of development over time that optimizes exposure to stimulus in order to maximize utility, much the same way a plant grows in response to the stimulus of the sunlight. The stimulus is your own curiosity.  The utility is your own eternal joy and never ending splendor. 

My hope is that this Helping Friendly Little Free Library becomes a Helping Friendly LIVING Free Library, just like the seeds that we have planted here on top.  I hope that this Helping Friendly Little Free Library takes on a life of its own.  And just like the seed that was first only the IDEA to build a Helping Friendly Little Free Library, that seed has now grown into this, the physical manifestation of a dream.  We have turned mind-stuff into creation, and now we are introducing it to the community for the betterment of all.

Let this be a lesson! 

All things manifest first from an idea.  If you will it, it is no dream. My hope is that we can gain your support and continue to nourish The Helping Friendly Vision and keep the momentum of this forward motion going.  Let us not take too long to start thinking about the next milestone we want to achieve.  The Helping Friendly Foundation would love to build a team to design, assemble, install, and steward as many Little Free Libraries as possible.  Where would the world be without books?  Where is it now?

Before we go any further I have to thank each and every one of you that contributed to help make this milestone a reality.  I want to give an especially huge thank you to Chase Williams for taking the creation of The Helping Friendly Little Free Library squarely on his back and delivering beyond expectations.  I am sincerely grateful.  You have made the world a little better place, as have we all with this project, and the fun is just beginning.

As a living entity I expect The Little Free Library is only just starting its existence and will go through many stages, just as all living entities do.  The more love and attention we shower on it, the more meaning it will have, and the more meaning it will radiate.  Cosmic Froth is created through engagement.  I encourage you all to engage with The Helping Friendly Little Free Library in your own special way.

Take a book, bring a book.  Read the book.  The formula is simple.

Without further ado, please join me in a blessing as we sage The Helping Friendly Little Free Library and cut the ribbon to officially open it here, today, 12.13.14, the final sequential day of the century."

 

The Blessing

Great Spirit, Creator of all things,
Whose voice I hear in the wind,
Whose breath gives life to all the world
Guide me with your strength and wisdom.

To the North, to the East, to the South, and to the West

Great Spirit, with this sacred sage please rid this space of all negative energetic residues.  Leave in their absence a clean and clear energy field full of infinite potential.  Infuse this space with your sweet omniscience and make it a fertile field for cosmic growth.

Great Spirit, we gather here today to marvel at your wonders and give thanks for you continued love and support of our Helping Friendly endeavors.

We ask that you bless this, our first ever Helping Friendly Little Free Library, and aid it to
 become something greater than the sum of all its parts.
Bless these books, and bless the people who bring them.
Bless the holy exchanges that are made under this roof that they may be catalysts for enlightenment.

Great Spirit, please allow the Helping Friendly Little Free Library to be an instigator of fertile confusion,
Illuminating curiosity for the purpose of forward motion.

May the Questers of the world follow their pine cones right to you, and may you assist them as needed to discover the ancient secrets to eternal joy and never ending splendor.

To all our Relations, we give thanks.
Namaste!