We have come to the end of our last chapter, where our focus has been on describing what full generativity might be and might look like. It is clear from our descriptions that it requires a collective-conscious intimacy with all of life. I really mean: all of life. The wild, the exotic, the magic, the subtle, the alluring included. We have spent enough time noting that our collective witnessing capacity needs to expand to hold collective pain and trauma, to make sure that these so-called positive qualities are not a denial of the so-called other side. On the contrary, it is because of our ability to hold intensity – also regarding big historical and cultural traumas – that we are capable of holding more and more life-affirming energies.
Observing what is in We-Now-Here and Potential
As I am writing this it is mid-August. Still quiet summer time for me, but attention is more and more shifting to what the next working year will hold. With our forming 4-person-strong little business we also wondered what kind of workshops we will offer next year. Strangely enough, I didn’t have many ideas so far, just one. But sitting in a circle (online) this week, through the unfolding conversation, some ideas came up from one person, which triggered new names coming up in me of whom to work with. One day later, I reached out to one of these new names, she responded very enthusiastically, and we arranged to talk the following week! That, for me, is living in the soup of life. You don’t have a clue, but you trust life and its unfolding – and in no small way, you trust your team with its collective intelligence, wisdom and sensing! – and suddenly something very appealing just appears. The one small idea I did have seems to unfold in a good direction and a conversation is planned. Of course, we will need some longer-term planning as we organize more and more, but for now we are happy to muddle along in this soup, taking it one step at the time. We have opened our minds that this soup will bring us good food, as long as we are present to ourselves, to our collective field, and to the responses from life all around us. We don’t need to cling on to strict planning as we would do if we didn’t trust what life will bring us. Our intention is clear, and we hold our minds open for what will unfold.
Accepting what is in We-Now-Here and Potential
Accepting what is in We-Now-Here and Potential implies a deeply embodied understanding that we need to bring our authentic capacities together in a collective-conscious way, otherwise any potential that we might sense will not be realised. Back to our small business start-up, we realized some time ago that, although we each have our own business, we cannot fully realise whatever it is that is in our midst by staying in separate units. Accepting this means a lot of steps to take, not least many administrative ones, which is not my favorite pastime! But we do accept that, so we act accordingly.
In another team where we use Collective Presencing as our basic practice we have accepted that there is a potential that we all resonate with, feel called by, but it has not been the right time and the right space to bring it into any manifest form. We invited and invoked our shared inquiry, but so far it didn’t gel and we remain in the sensing phase, holding the not-knowing-yet, because we have accepted that.
Honouring what is in We-Now-Here and Potential
In a next phase – and again, not in any linear way! – where you collectively deeply honour that you are in service of a potential – the process of unfolding moves from the more frustrated feeling of is-this-going-to-become-anything-at-all to a sense of being in love with the collective potential; like looking out for what is going to happen if we keep our senses open, collectively. Out attention is geared towards: what is hidden in the gift that we are receiving from life? We cannot rush and tear open the paper of the present, but calmly we untie the knots, of which sometimes there are many.
Honouring here means that we don’t see our efforts as a struggle with the knots of the ribbon, or with the beautiful wrapping paper, but that we see it as engaging in a continuous and collective piece of action research, learning with every step.
Living what is in We-Now-Here and Potential
If we honour the continuous collective inquiry, if we accept that we are in the service of a collective potential, and open and ready to live and work in the soup of life, then our lives and our projects are always in the process of becoming; always creative, always generating some more life-affirming actions. It is amazing to have almost daily feelings of gratitude that give you a soft heart: for yourself; for your colleagues; and for what is happening in the world, even that is sometimes quite ugly. It is quite amazing that the gratitude is not only for the big breakthroughs or sudden insights, but just the same for the daily chores – as when someone did the dishes which you didn’t expect, or cleared something away helpfully, or gave attention to some small detail – and daily ‘normal’ experiences: noticing the flowers next to the road, seeing the clouds passing by, and so much more. Work flows easily, insights come frequently and in their right timing when we are engaged in a team like this. The practice of Collective Presencing gives you all this, and more!