We went with the flow, together

After a rich and stirring experience at Eroles during week 1 of the "Camp as if people mattered" residency, I felt the urge to put down some reflections. These emerged from the original aspiration that I formulated when we did a dragon-dreaming exercise on the first day: We went with the flow, together. And they are inspired by the mountain landscape and the sense I had of the emergence of a quality of resilience amongst the participants that holds the promise of a truly unique contribution to new paradigm thinking and doing.
Like tiny streams, sourced high in the mountains,
Eager to flow towards something bigger, stronger, deeper
We embarked together on our enquiry as a collective, at Eroles…
Tentatively, respectfully, we offered our aspirations and commitment
Like a gathering of waters, tracing a path towards each other
Coming together to form a small river…
Almost bursting with enthusiasm, dancing over stones baking in sunlight,
Then resting, under stars radiant in cool midnight blue skies, dreaming
Of a braver, kinder, more generous world
Sometimes gasping for air, running dry over the hot, parched soil,
When it got too heated, like the water, we sought cooler space
Seeping back down into cracks in the earth, under rocks, in small pools…
To seek shade, preserve energy and await the moment to emerge again
And to re-engage with the dynamics of the movement onwards
To bubble forth with ideas, new awareness, the pleasure of listening, querying,
connecting with others
Accepting to explore frustration, fear, anger at the multiple sources of pain in the world,
Hearing new takes, observing reactions, listening again and again,
Offering thoughts, experiences, stories, questions…
Pooling, then flowing along again, gently gathering momentum and depth,
Conscious that alone, we could easily drown in the vast complexity and pace of the many challenges,
Or dry up in the face of so many other external forces and seeming lack of resources.
Were it not for the love, trust, courage and compassion that we breathed into the dry, tight spaces
When our minds and bodies tired and faltered, our spirits wearied,
We could have built up barriers, borders, to halt the flow…
But rather, we pulled together, we laughed together, we made music together,
Exploring non-otherness, non-duality, in a delicate, vulnerable human movement
Seeking to find our way through tricky terrain, in all weathers, against all odds
To learn that we can grow our resilience, and inspire others to do so too,
To learn to feel empowered with – not over – and to truly go with the flow
Jill Mackechnie
Retired UN humanitarian aid worker
now seeking new ways of caring
for people, places and planet