Writing Again

I’m in the longest stretch I’ve had in the last two and one half years of not posting on this blog. It’s only a month, but I can feel the hunger in my fingers. I can feel the grown cue of ideas that have come, rested a while, and then left. Or of some that just cooked in me in a different way through oodles of conversations with people.

It’s been a full stretch of travel, working with groups, teaching, and learning in public. Wonderful bits with really amazing partners and participants that have occupied me from early mornings well past sun-setted evenings. I’ve been to Whidbey Island, teaching The Circle Way with Amanda Fenton. It’s one of my favorite places in the world. Then further with Amanda and Penny Hamilton to Australia to introduce more of The Circle Way to a community services organization and others so honest in their hunger for deliberate containers of connection. Then immediately upon my return to Minnesota to teach and offer Circle, Song, and Ceremony with Quanita Roberson and Barbara McAfee, bringing forward a new offering.

What great pairs and trios to be a part of! Sometimes in the profound and broad narratives of humanity — how we human beings are, after long drought, requenching our way back to story, context, voice, song, ritual, and wisdom together. Sometimes the satisfying moments with my teaching companions have been in the simple ahas that come over a bite of left over pad thai at the end of the day. “I loved the way that ____ came alive today.” Or, “Wasn’t that a great question that _____ asked!”

It is a gift to host. It is a gift to be hosted. It is a gift to reshape paradigms of teaching that encourage ourselves and others to go together.

Among the many bits that will no doubt continue to unfold within my awareness, or begged from within to be shared more broadly, here’s a gem from the gathering that concluded just yesterday. It is original song from Barbara McAfee, “I Wish That I Could Show You.” The group of 26 of us sang it a few times over the weekend. It’s quite a thing to be touched deeply, and dare to find any words to share moments of aliveness. Thanks Barbara — and all.


Days of The Circle Way

I have many gatherings in the next six weeks that are deliberately focused on The Circle Way. That makes me quite happy — The Circle Way is such a grounding and core methodology that underlays a way of being. There is The Circle Way Practicum August 23-28 on Whidbey Island, teaching with Amanda Fenton — Amanda and I have picked up a twenty year tradition of teaching in Christina Baldwin and Ann Linnea’s home teaching space. There is a workshop and a practicum in September in Australia, again with Amanda. This is new territory for both of us, and delightfully partnered with Penny Hamilton from Brisbane. There is a new weekend leadership retreat in mid September in Minnesota with Quanita Roberson and Barbara McAfee, who are both people that I love to laugh with.

I’ve been reviewing this morning some of my notes from the practicum workbook. It gets me quite excited. I love the feeling of added nuance that arrives when it feels like I’m on the on ramp to those events. I get excited to teach. I get excited to play off of what these really skilled teaching companions bring to the table themselves.

One of my favorite learnings about The Circle Way came earlier this year in conversation with Christina. She was framing intent that she and Ann felt very deeply in offering The Circle Way. “We wanted a culturally neutral, light structure to correct what goes awry in so many contemporary forms of meeting.” I’ve always loved the way that Christina can take a deeply spiritual practice and bring it down to the everyday. I’m a pretty natural question catcher. From this statement it makes we want to engage a group around questions of what goes awry in so many meetings, and, what is possible in these meetings?

Circle creates a container for so many of the important conversations needed in the ongoing weave that is humanity. It’s a container for the challenging conversations, the ones that we are often afraid to take on. It’s a container for some of the exciting conversations also, to give them more depth and reach. Wisdom-based change arises from people together. That’s pretty cool. It just needs some support and structure.

I’m grateful for wise people that have guided me. I’m grateful for imaginative and kind teaching companions. I’m grateful to further immerse myself in teachings and practices from The Circle Way over these coming weeks. Because, well, they feel like home in how they animate realness together.