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Meet Ethan Lipsitz of Love Extremist in Northeast LA

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ethan Lipsitz.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Ethan. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I moved to LA in 2008 to focus my time on building Apliiq.com, a custom apparel platform all about empowering creativity and fashion entrepreneurship. In 2017 I suffered a horrifying seizure in my sleep and discovered I had brain cancer. In moving through surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, I stepped down from my role at Apliiq and began healing my body and devoting my days to love. As a Love Extremist (www.extremist.love) I am devoted to exploring love as activism in how I engage with my own body, my relationships and the world. I host Love Extremist Radio (https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/love-extremist-radio/id1443881491?mt=2), an interview podcast that seeks to define love in practical, actionable terms. I paint cars, buildings and other objects as a way to spread love with color (www.ethanlipsitz.com) and I host group co-creative musical experiences in The Outernet (www.welcometotheouter.net). I’m also working on a number of other creative projects designed to spread love through conversation, writing, music and other media.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Lots of challenges have come up along the way, running a business isn’t easy nor is battling brain cancer. I’ve completely changed how I eat, following a strict anti-tumor ketogenic diet and continue to live in gratitude and on purpose every day so as to ensure my body is at its full capacity for healing. Growing so many projects at once, from Apliiq to my art and music work, has brought a fair share of challenges. I also challenge myself to find joy and love in every person and every day, many times I struggle, but the rewards are worth it.

Please tell us about Love Extremist.
Love Extremist began as a simple question and a heart-shaped pin with the word ‘EXTREMIST’ inside. I’d ask what is the opposite of extremist hate? Now, in addition to the pins, I have expanded my work across media with a weekly Podcast and regular art releases. I’d say I’m known for always standing for love as a practical approach to living a full life of purpose. What that means is learning to be at peace and in truth with what is happening in real-time (both in our own lives and in this current climate of disruption and struggle) while holding a vision for and pushing towards a better future.

What sets this movement apart from other love movements is the focus on practical love starting with the self and moving outwards to our interpersonal relationships and then, our communities and the world. All paths of love are integral here. Love for self isn’t true love if it’s ignoring love for all other beings outside ourselves. Being a Love Extremist is about consistently checking in and acting every day with heartfelt support for yourself, others and the planet.

What were you like growing up?
I was into art, skateboarding, writing music on the guitar and exploring with friends. From a young age I would dress myself in mismatching socks and crooked caps, it was the 80s and I was determined to express myself at all times, it wasn’t too difficult with a huge head of bright red hair.

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Image Credit:
Daniel Johnson – white car, me in my studio; Soho Warehouse – Rooftop Pool Textiles

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