Love-Based Living in Action
For nearly three years now we have been gathering together about once a month to do a Love-Based Living Circle. It is a time we set aside to put into practice the things we talk about in the Declaration of Interdependence. I thought I would start out describing the general flow of a love-based living circle before talking about a recent circle.
We open up space in the Kitchen by moving tables out of the way and assembling the chairs into a circle. A small table for the center is filled with talking objects. These are a collection of items that a person would select and hold while they are talking to allow each person the time to share without interruption.
Each circle starts out with a time of quiet to allow our brains to transition from where-ever we have been into this quieter, more introspective space. Then a question: something to get us thinking and talking about ourselves, a question that brings each individual into the circle sharing from the I or me. Next, after most have shared, a weaving question: something along the lines of "what touched you" and a time to ask for more information or to reflect and comment. Then we focus on the "take home:" what or how do I want to take what I have learned about myself and others into everyday life?
For this particular circle, Karen asked for candles and as the space was being prepared, I lit one candle for each person present, seven in all.
Tonight's first section consisted of these questions: What are typical features of the transition to winter for you? What is coming up for you this year specifically?
As the circle progressed and we each shared our responses to these questions, comments revolved around how life is different being away from bio-family.
As time came for the second section, Karen asked each of us to claim a common or personal pitfall of relationship communication and name our candle. The following is a list of the candles that were presented:
These are the things we learned and took with us from this Love-Based-Living Circle. While every circle is different it is a gift we give to each other as we show up and allow ourselves to be vulnerable in a supportive community.
- I did something crappy ‒ acknowledging that my recent behavior was not my best or not in my interest
- Intimacy is not a right to abuse ‒ having a deep meaningful relationship does not give either party the right to mistreat the other
- Distinguish between What and How ‒ there is a big difference between what gets done and how it gets done and in that difference is a potential minefield of misinterpretations
- Wrong Person ‒ talking about an issue with a third party instead of the person who was involved
- Disparity between Intention and Action ‒ My to-do list is so big that I get caught up in managing it instead of moving a project forward
- Warm Hello ‒ even late in the day ‒ Sometimes it is lunchtime before we might see one another and remembering to greet each other is important
- I'm Sorry ‒ a heartfelt "I'm Sorry" goes a long way
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