Ben's Open Road
No Death Bed Regrets (1:24)
Fire Spinning (0:32)
Leaving Career In Human Rights (1:41)
Discovering His Passion (0:41)
Mistakes Are Some of the Greatest Things (2:06)
Definition of Happiness (1:05)
Leaving Your Hometown (1:05)
I've got great benefits, I've got a great salary-but here's this other thing, and when I'm doing this other thing, I'm not just really happy...I'm extremely happy.
- In college, saw the film Hotel Rwanda and became an activist; worked to end genocide in Darfur.
- Moved to Washington D.C. to work for the Genocide Intervention Network.
- Became disillusioned by the internal politics at the organizations he worked for; decided to take his own trip to Kenya.
- Had begun poi spinning after discovering it at Burning Man; taught the art of poi/fire dancing on his trip to Africa.
- Felt more fulfilled teaching in Kenya for one month than he'd felt in two years working at the Network.
- Started teaching poi spinning classes in Washington D.C., posting tutorials online.
- Rather than wondering if he was making a difference, he now had people seeking him out to say he'd changed their lives.
- Says spinning poi brings him so much joy because it's a form of meditation; there are no worries about immediate gains-you just spin.