You are invited to experience a laid-back introduction to a men’s group. There’s no commitment to anything beyond this night.
Note: Due to COVID restrictions we need to limit the gathering to 10 people. We will be outside for the evening, weather permitting.
For millennia, people have gathered in circle – generally around a fire, to listen and share stories of their life. This practice continues into modern times, and the experience of being with others in this way is in turns simple, boring, delicate, expanding, precious and enlivening. Friendship has grown and deepened, along with self-knowledge and an ability to put this self-knowledge into practice.
For those who may not be familiar with a typical men’s circle, here are some guidelines that have been developed over the years that help to create a safe space in which to gather. These would include:
- confidentiality – each person’s story is their own to share, and not ours to repeat
- non-judgement – our truth is our own.
- welcoming all experience – all feelings, stories are welcome
- Speaking from the heart, not only our head – this is a space of feeling and experience. This is not a place to philosophize, politicize or evangelize
- I-language – we each speak only for ourselves. Over time, we gain experience of owning our language and experience
- witness and listening are paramount – advice and problem-solving are avoided
- presence – really showing up for two hours – tired, sore, ecstatic, sad – just really showing up
There is a longer term intention behind this invitation. We are looking to form a circle that will meet for the next 12 months. Specifically this circle will explore those unwanted areas in our lives – be it addiction, lack of purpose, depression, sexual habits, etc…. however, even if at this stage you’re not sure this is you, why not come along and see where the seed lands. These themes are our life’s work, and we find ourselves coming back to them at different stages of life’s journey.
So, if you want to deepen your self-knowledge, practice deeper empathy and listening, develop greater self-compassion, and paradoxically find freedom from something unwanted, this is for you.
For those inspired by allegorical language, here’s how Joseph Campbell puts it:
We have not even to risk the adventure alone for the heroes of all time have gone before us. The labyrinth is thoroughly known … we have only to follow the thread of the hero path. And where we had thought to find an abomination we shall find a God. And where we had thought to slay another we shall slay ourselves. Where we had thought to travel outwards we shall come to the center of our own existence. And where we had thought to be alone we shall be with all the world