TED x SFU Pitch

Earlier this month I went to Radius SFU to pitch a TED talk to Ted x SFU about the strength of resiliency. Their program was focused on Unchartered.

My pitch is supported by weaving the roots of etymology, and trees, to share a different side of suffering that reinforces resiliency.

Listen to the 90 second pitch:

Below are a few exerts from my application:

Passion” excites me, it comes from a intertwined network of words that share a common theme of suffering. If we trace the roots of the word it literally means “suffer” like many other words. “patience”, “comPassion”, “passive”, “sustain” the path we walk in life and many other words we use all come from suffering when we look at their origin. What may be beautiful words on the surface, may seem much more unappealing to most of society when we look into the depths of their meanings. Interconnected researches, from philosophies, to mental health practices to various examples of nature such as trees resiliency and their beautiful artisan characteristics that flourish through stress portray that there is a interconnected theme of growth through suffering in our world. If we can expand our perspective around darkness and suffering it will reveal, and can aid support health.

The suffering, trauma we experience in life usually plays a key role in shaping who we become.

“Shit is fertile ground for growth.”

Technically “shit” comes from scheissen of German origin which was originally neutral and was used without vulgar connotation. TED stands for technology, entertainment and design. I like to use various definitions and perspectives when looking at words and appreciatte the roots of TED as it genuinely emphasizes “ideas worth spreading” from my perspective. Interestingly so, the etymology of TED is: “spread manure”.  Manure actually originates from maneuver. It’s up to you how you move when working through your shit. Toiling soil is work but is worth it if you want grow. It’s up to us how we want to use and see words which shape our path and society around us.

Trees are a key example of the power of resiliency. Under stress and fungus, Maple trees spalt and yield artisan characteristics from the stress it endures. What may seem rotten on the outside is not usually on the inside, after a craft-makers efforts to clean up and get to the core it reveals so much beauty beneath the rot on the surface.  Agarwood another specimen is formed from infected Aquilaria trees.  Once infected the heartwood develops a dark aromatic resin used for ayurvedic medicine to high end fragrances. Its called the “Black gold of the forest”. or grafted Douglas fir trees that yield magical transmogrifications after being cut down. It’s the support of their neighbours that aid them continue to grow. *”Douglas” comes Gaelic Dubh glas “the dark water,”.

We can see Trees and nature as an inspiration to see how stress in their lives can lead to characther. Inspiring us to tap in and work through our traumas and come back to our nature to pave the path we choose to in life.

The etymology of dark is “to hide” and “conceal”. But if we continue to charter into darkness we can assimilate our senses, illuminate whatever darknesses lie hidden and reveal gems. There are gems hidden in darkness which lead to buds of growth.


*Want to learn more about trees. Ted & Gina Cooke put together a video which speaks of the truth of trees.

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