brief reflections from the on being gathering20 Feb 2018
i got back this morning (like 1a e.s.t.) from california coming off of the first on being gathering. it was beautiful and problematic (as are most things). here are just a few highlight reflections that i want not to forget.
- i made a few spiritual crushes. jacobo, chris, arzhia, sarah bradley, marilyn nelson, tim, padraig, john paul, scott (from la), scott (from houston) just to name a few.
- i ran out of energy to speak at the end of day 2. day 3 i spent speaking as few words as possible. it was pretty strange and also sort of lovely.
- the conference was (unsurprisingly) pretty white. i appreciated that there was sort of an acknowledgement of that. i also appreciated that there was open space (thanks casper dearest) for people to propose their own conversations. there were two black caucus moments. i missed the second one because i was trying to get to know an older black man (seemingly gay) who survived the aids epidemic in the 90 and because of his survival, ended up becoming a de facto leader. the second one was pretty big and i have major fomo about it but i’m glad i had the convo i did.
- i haven’t felt so spiritually full in a long time
- i haven’t swung from feeling so spiritually full to so spiritually off center this quickly ever. it’s barely been 24h since i’ve been back and already my heart is racing at even the slightest mist of anxiety.
- i’m realizing (more than i usually do) that i really do need a spiritual community to ground me. something regular. maybe i already have this and i need to reframe it (e.l., uhuru, meditation)
- i finally had an opportunity to experience tai chi. it was a lovely first time, especially connecting with chris, a new friend. we ended up doing this intense eye-gaze while learning cloudy hands and it was nuts. reminded me of my eye-gazing experience with jess back during evolutionary leadership.
- the retreat center, 1440 multiversity, was SO white it was unreal. they had fucking stalks of cotton in the “healing arts” center/building. just like… in a giant vase right in the entryway. clearly no black people were involved in the making of that space. jesus.
- given the theme of the conference, civil conversations, it was shocking to me how resistant the organizers were to actually having conversations across difference. i wish i had noticed that earlier.
- jpl has inspired me to haiku
- also turns out he is friends with camilo’s dad. and he told a story about ricardo from the stage on the last day of the convening. nuts.
there’s more but it’s late and i have jury duty in the morning.
one more thing actually. on the final morning right before leaving, me, jacobo, and ashby (from portland) sat in the sun in the redwood ampitheater. i laid back and tried to crystallize the memory in my mind. i conjured that memory several times today when i was feeling stressed. it helped. a lot. visualization is so powerful. thinking is a hell of a drug lol.
words / writing / post-processing
495w / 12min / 4min