Last month I had the opportunity to organize and facilitate, in conjunction with the Greenheart Transforms team, a four day retreat in Sedona, AZ, which brought together seventeen enlightened individuals, including the leaders of these organizations: the Institute of Noetic Sciences, Integral Transformative Practice International, the Theosophical Society in America, and Greenheart Transforms. The purpose of our gathering was to explore ways in which our organizations might work together to further the transformation of consciousness. The quality of our conversations was at such a new level of cooperation and understanding that I am still struggling to absorb the message from this historical meeting of the minds. Fortunately, detailed transcripts were taken of all that was said, and I would like to dedicate this newsletter to the wisdom of the masterful group that was present, and share some of their thoughts with you.
As I read through over 50 pages of comments from the group, there were a couple of common themes that were prevalent: radical inclusion and community building. The transformative movement must endeavor to include the widest range possible of people, not simply accepting all forms of radicalism, but accepting people for what they can be, and give them hope to change. Thus we build community by accepting others, and communities, like the four main organizations that met in Sedona, meet and merge in the best interests of the whole.
May the thoughts that follow give you a sense of the discussions at the Sedona Summit, and a feeling of hope for the new year and new era ahead.
Laura Rose, CEO of Greenheart International:
“Living in a transformed world means creating space for people to live without fear, and to help them let go of things they hold so tightly, because that is what they are familiar with and what they have been conditioned to understand, and unless we are loyal to this community then we are being untrue to ourselves. Inclusion is so deeply important; if we are to transform we have to embrace others, and yet allow others to find harmony. That transformation is about creating a broader worldview, first enabling ourselves and then little by little opening ourselves up to others. If we allow that to transmit, then we can save the planet and ourselves. I’m buoyantly optimistic that we can do this.”
Cassandra Vieten, President and CEO of the Institute of Noetic Sciences:
“Radical inclusion is a concept I’ve been using when teaching about mindfulness, and when we are practicing it, radical inclusion also includes our ego, our failures, our greed– we all have these aspects of ourselves that exist through karma, hard-wiring and past experiences. We can take all of those as valuable teachers and if we can do that within ourselves we can do that with others. Aggressors come in all forms and we must make sure we hold all of this complexity and realize that there is a shadow to embrace just as we embrace a higher impulse. These short-comings can be transformed, we don’t have to banish and suppress them. We can transform them with love.
We truly believe in the human capacity to make these tools and practices accessible to everyone. We are creating this space, this invitation that says anyone can really take these tools and use them wisely, make them their own and allow them to thrive. The way to thrive is to look deeper inside of ourselves, and after all this research we have learned how important it is to be mindful and intentional with our efforts. If we were to put that intention toward something really specific, as we are with this group, imagine the energy and the power of what is to come. There would be nothing that could stop us.”
Pam Kramer, President of Integral Transformative Practice International:
“We have had many discussions about this concept of holding one another in their best and highest potential. And this ties into the theme of inclusion, radical inclusion, and at the same time seeing the highest and best flowering of the other and our self and everything around us. For me, what I would love to see in this heightened state of possibility is the stream of evolutionary love flowing from each of our hearts to each other. From there, if we have it living and breathing inside of us, we can easily transmit it out in the world. The emotional felt sense is very important and noticing our feelings and having a vocabulary to connect that way – then magical things happen. There is a tipping point around integral embodiment and group outreach.
I think about love. I think about fertile ground for transformation and everything seems to be circular and flowing and how it’s important to keep that spirit of a flowing pathway that is awakening. There is a deep inner knowing that is available to all of us individually and collectively. There is also a spirit of play, and I love keeping that alive as we co-create.”
Tim Boyd, President of the Theosophical Society in America:
“From what I’ve seen from all of you, there is a lot of life here, and the word that came to me was “be” and then “allow.” The fact that we are here, what are the chances? This isn’t one of those statistical phenomena. It is happening because we said “yes,” and we allowed this to happen and all we have to do now is come out to play. The structure of the universe is such that we are engaged in a sort of pilgrimage, wandering far from home, and then we need to find our way back. Where the personal responsibility comes in is that there are certain choices. Reaching the human stage, there is a capacity for choice that comes in, and to do nothing is also a choice. So we can choose to accelerate this process, this journey home, where you see and feel what’s real.
I don’t think we can fully appreciate the scope of the opportunity of what we can achieve in the world. It demonstrates what the nature of this real potential is. Earlier, Andrea used the word dharma, and this word can mean a lot, but it can mean the “soul’s highest purpose.” People spend a lifetime trying to figure out what that is and bounce from thing to thing, but no matter how we translate it, we all know inside that we have made an alignment with that deeper dharma and I see this for me personally, I’m all in. I’m very hopeful. We are going to be alright, and because of us, a whole lot of other people are going to be alright.”