The Evolutionary Collective welcomed 125 people from near and far to its New Year’s Day Internet call. Patricia Albere, the founder of the organization, led us in exploring the topic of “longing”. Part of our time together was in groups of two and three. We looked at what aspects of society we’d like to say goodbye to. Later, what were our visions for the world we’d love to inhabit?
I felt into the questions and stayed open to the images that wanted to emerge. There was no “figuring it out”.
Here’s what I’m saying no to:
1. So rarely do we physically touch each other.
2. Kids respond rather than initiate. Their ideas are not as important as those of adults.
3. We are afraid of each other. Our tendency is to move away rather than go towards.
4. I’m right and you’re wrong.
5. “Home” is our own needs and wants.
And then there’s the vision of what is yet to be:
1. We laugh together at how silly life is.
2. We look deeply into each other’s eyes. We linger there … and feel the beauty.
3. We value ideas from whomever they spring, regardless of age, gender, status or what your peers think.
4. We go slow, seeing the moments of the world unfold before us, and we smile at what is revealed.
5. We hug, easily and often, including all in our positive regard.
It was a lovely two hours together. With Zoom technology, we could see 25 folks at once on our laptop screens. A simple click and there were 25 more faces. The infinite variety and grace of human beings was on full display. It was a privilege to come together like this.
Earlier, I sat in a comfy chair near Keur Saloum’s pool. To my left was a black family: mom, dad, son and yappy little dog. They were talking in English, and clearly enjoying each other’s presence. I decided to let them be. My vision for the future revolves around reaching out to new humans but it didn’t seem right to be intruding into their joy. The power of contact, however, was initiated by an unexpected being – the little doglet came close and really turned up the barking.
Mom apologized for “Simba”. I smiled and said it was fine. And then it came to me: tell Simba that my name was Mufasa (Simba’s father in The Lion King). So I did. Mom and dad laughed … and we were off to the races.
Where do you live? > For the next year – in Dakar [the capital of Senegal]. After that, back in the United States.
Where in the States > In California
Where in California? > Near San Francisco
Where? > Berkeley
In eight days, I’ll arrive in Berkeley. I’ll be staying for a week > (!)
Oh my. What can be created, what can emerge, when we simply move closer to each other? I think it’s called magic.
I told Penda and Solomon that I volunteer in a Grade 5/6 class in Canada, and that months ago three girls asked me if I would bring them something back from San Francisco. I said yes, in the spirit of rewarding kids who speak up. It turns out that they all wanted a necklace. Actually the very same design: the tree of life.
Do.you know where I could find “tree of life” pendants in Berkeley? > Yes. Your conference site [The David Brower Center] is only a few blocks away from a bunch of street vendors who carry stuff like this. Walk east on Allston Way to Oxford Street. South on Oxford to Bancroft Way. Three blocks east to Telegraph Avenue … et voilà.
From Toubacouta, Senegal
across the world to Berkeley, California
There is really no distance between us