Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Business Mind, a Zen Spirit

“To trust in the force that moves the universe is faith,” Marianne Williamson writes in A Return To Love. “Faith isn’t blind, it’s visionary.”

I believe this. I live this. And I am ever drawn to others who get it because it turns the notion of “blind faith” on its head.

Rich Tola falls in the category of those who get it.

“It is visionary,” he said. “And it takes courage. Whatever it’s supposed to be, it’ll come. It sounds like mumbo jumbo, but it’s not.”

Last December I wrote a Game Plan column about Tola -- a product of a Wharton and Kellogg education -- moving from the Wall Street scene to the Hollywood hills to pursue acting and yoga. And because he sees what has been put in front of him and has faith in his vision, he is now entrenched in forming a meaningful foundation called The Boulevard Zen Foundation.

It is, according to its Web site, “a nonprofit organization that provides yoga classes and lifestyle education to women and children in domestic violence shelters.” The idea is to pay excellent yoga teachers at the top of the scale, make it a free service at the shelters, and really build a company that will expand nationally and internationally.

“The money is coming from me right now,” Tola said. “Basically I took a sabbatical from my life to create the foundation. I want to put the company in a position to grow if a million dollars walks in the door.”