Europe– a soft autumn & full circles

From 9 October to 1 November, Ann Linnea and I have been traveling in central Europe through weeks of soft weather and incredible people-time. Landing in Brussels, we were whisked into the Belgian farmlands to visit friends and spend a day in a small, informal, circle of women…a breath upon landing. Then we trained to Cologne, Germany, and spent the rest of the weekend in Bad Honnef, near Bonn—and our education began. This would be a visit in which our friends took the time and effort to fill us in on European history and prehistory—Celts in Germany and Austria, Romans along the Rhine and empiric walls under the city of Vienna, the path of the Crusaders marching home, the intertwined politics of church and ruling families and the emergence of nations.

Old castle ruins in the Eiffel region of Germany.

Old castle ruins in the Eiffel region of Germany.

Roman walls under the main square, Vienna

Roman walls under the main square, Vienna

Durnstein, Austria

Durnstein, Austria

Ann and I, and our Canadian circle colleague, Amanda Fenton, were lovingly plunged into an “audio visual world history course” that happened while driving through the countryside and walking cobbled streets. We come home with an immersion into our roots that will work in us for a long time.

And somehow all of this grounded the work we did depositing circle practice and learning about what is already happening here. We had full groups in every setting and circle did its magic while we have conveyed the strength of the structure to hold us in complex, multi-cultural, multi-lingual settings. It’s astonishing to have created a body of work and see what’s happening 20 years later with folks mostly 20 years younger.

We had a 4-day training in Germany, a 1.5-day training in Vienna, and a 4-hour salon evening, followed by a 3-day training in Bregenz. Amanda’s traveling with us brought both great support and a bridge between how the work is growing in Europe and in North America.

Many of the people we work with are also working in the European Commission in one way or another and have shared stories about the internal transformation of communication occurring in an extremely formal, complex hierarchy. We are humbled to see how deeply circle work has moved into consulting, facilitation, community organizing, and government. Wow… We are just starting to integrate these experiences… more to come.

4 replies
  1. Gretchen Staebler
    Gretchen Staebler says:

    “…we have conveyed the strength of the structure to hold us in complex, multi-cultural, multi-lingual settings. It’s astonishing to have created a body of work and see what’s happening 20 years later with folks mostly 20 years younger.” I’m so glad you were able to witness, to really see what you have done. It makes me weep, you are two such amazing people: recognizing, realizing, utilizing your gifts for good in the world. Twenty, 40, 100 years from now, your presence will still be present.

    Reply
  2. Jeanne Petrick
    Jeanne Petrick says:

    Ditto response to how nice that you are witnessing the fruits of your circle work that will live on 40, 60, 100 years from now. Now that is a life well lived! I am grateful to have learned from you both as well – lucky me!

    Reply
  3. Jude Rathburn
    Jude Rathburn says:

    Even though I was not a participant in your sessions throughout Europe, I feel deeply inspired knowing that the work that has touched my life so deeply is finding its way around the world. I am looking forward to continued inspiration as the ripple effects continue. Thank you for the gift of circle as a way to deepen our human connections and change the world.

    Reply

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