Rumi is rather beloved. This 13th century Persian Poet has touched many hearts.

Today, I’m moved by these simple words, carried forward 800 years.

Stay together, friends.
Don’t scatter and sleep.
Our friendship is made
of being awake.

It’s core, no? In these times. This awakeness rooted in friendship.


It begins with a simple hello. There is joy in connection. A joy that is as natural as this mountain stream cascading over stones. There are four of us on Zoom, which gives us video and voice connection. We are colleagues. We are also friends. We haven’t connected in this way for a couple of weeks. If we were wolves or dogs, this simple helloing is some tail-wagging and playful bumping into each other.

It continues with some restatement of purpose. There is joy in this too. “I think what we are up to today is a bit of reconnection (in this case, before going into a Q & A session with prospective participants to an upcoming Art of Hosting that we will all hold together).” We are cultivating our learning field among us, which has direct bearing on what participants will experience.

It continues with deliberate check-in. It’s updating a bit of where we each are on our respective paths. We each know that it won’t be everything. It’s not a report. It’s a moment of witnessing with each of us choosing right-sized bites to share that build us into an “us.” There is more than tail-wagging. We are inviting the belonging that is pack.

Aside note — I recently listened to “The Wisdom of Wolves: Lessons from the Sawtooth Pack” by Jim and Jamie Dutcher. It was road-trip listening that carried me through much of Montana and southern British Columbia last week, headed north to Fairmont, Canada. I loved the book. I loved the imagery of the wolves. I loved the insights into their social behaviors.

Back to the call — I’m close to these people on this call. There is already a chemistry. And it’s growing. Because we are committed to hello, and purpose, and deliberate check-in. We are going together. We are growing together. It feels natural to be in our sharedness and in our difference that is held by honest relationship — I’m glad for that.

And then the call continues. Others come to join — these are the participants. They are yummy. They share a bit of intro. They share a few questions. And then we think and be out loud together. Without script. But with much purpose, honesty, and expectation to learn and connect.

All of this, I would suggest, is tending to a “field.” It is a less visible connective tissue. It involves words, but is more than words. It involves images and is social cues, but is more than that too. “Field” is the ethereal that carries more of the whole of us. Into knowns and unknowns. I love this. And I’d suggest, that this is so much the work of people in varied organizations today. Reclaiming connection. And honesty. And unscriptedness. So that we can go deeply to the inner and the outer.

Rumi, the 13th century Persian poet, is often quoted for this expression of field:

“Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field. I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase “each other”
doesn’t make any sense.
The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you.
Don’t go back to sleep.
You must ask for what you really want.
Don’t go back to sleep.
People are going back and forth across the doorsill
where the two worlds touch.
The door is round and open.
Don’t go back to sleep.”

Here’s to our awake together. To our fields of awakeness. And streams. And to all the good that grows from that. Inner. And outer. In groups small and large.

Keep Walking — Rumi


Thanks Rumi. And all of your 13th century wondering, Persian poet.

Thanks Meg Wheatley, for sharing this Rumi passage. And thanks Meg for all of your 21st century fellow wondering and wandering.

Keep walking, though there’s no place to get to.
Don’t try to see through the distances.
That’s not for human beings.
Move within, but don’t move the way fear makes you move.
Today, like every other day, we wake up empty and frightened.
Don’t open the door to the study and begin reading.
Take down a musical instrument.
Let the beauty we love be what we do.
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.

Jellaludin Rumi



The Undressing — Rumi

I’m appreciating my friend and colleague Kinde Nebeker (New Moon Rites of Passage) today. She is supporting and guiding so many deep and needed layers of change.

I went to her to get some help working with grief. In the spirit of Francis Weller’s “apprenticeship with sorrow.”

Kinde hosted me through a process of listening, council / dialogue, and shamanic journey. This is the kind of work that is so much needed for many of us these days.

I’m grateful to Kinde for her knowing stuff, and for her intuition of knowing what’s helpful and when.

Kinde also offered me this poem, from the 13th century Persian poet, Rumi. To help learn the sweetness of grief.


The Undressing

Learn the alchemy
true human beings know.

The moment you accept
what troubles you have been given,
the door opens.

Welcome difficulty,
as a familiar comrade.

Joke with torment,
sent by the Friend.

Sorrows are old rags of clothes
and jackets that serve to cover,
and then are taken off.

This is the undressing
and the naked body underneath
is the sweetness that comes
after grief.