Facilitation is Not a Dark Art

By Julian Griggs, IAF certified facilitator, who will be presenting Alchemy of Group Facilitation in Vancouver on Nov 20-22, 2017.

“Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.” – A.A. Milne

“Could you facilitate this meeting, please? Here’s a flipchart marker.”

For some people, this invitation marks their first adventure into the world of group facilitation. It is an invitation to leap in to an unfamiliar situation, often under the scrutiny of peers, and with little or no preparation. The scope of responsibility implied is ambiguous, although there is some expectation that the facilitator is a kind of ‘servant leader’—whatever that confusing term may mean.

‘Drop in’ facilitation of this type is uncomfortable and highly challenging, particularly for facilitation novices. This approach also reflects an assumption—that facilitation is a mysterious, mercurial role, practiced ‘on the fly’, characterized by brilliant interventions and enlightened guidance, which somehow enables a group to operate at its best.

I think that assumption is false and misleading.

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Writing to Awaken at Hollyhock

By , originally published in AT FORTY FIVE

Writing To Awaken, the latest book by bestselling author, Mark Matousek, begins

When you tell the truth, your story changes
When your story changes, your life is transformed.

and that set the stage for the 5-day retreat I attended in mid-August at Hollyhock, Canada’s Lifelong Learning Centre on Cortes Island in beautiful Desolation Sound, British Columbia.

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Robert Beatty – Mindfulness: Awakening to the Natural Way of Being (Podcast)

Long-time mindfulness practitioner and teacher, Robert Beatty speaks about mindfulness as a way of waking up in our lives and becoming fully human in each moment. Robert shares fundamental insights about impermanence, the connection between ethics and meditation, and truth of unity of all life.

Robert will be presenting “Mindfulness Meditation/Vipassana: The Practice of Waking Up” October 8 – 13, 2017: hollyhock.ca/programinfo/beatty/

Are you a Warrior or a Worrier (Or a Whiner?)

By David  Wagner, originally published on davidwagner.dom 

I’m not sure if I’m even allowed to do this – but I want to share a section from my men’s book BACKBONE.  It’s a book for men, but this section is for everyone, in fact, this section will be the basis for what I’m teaching at The Whole Man Intensive at Hollyhock this Fall. So, without further ado… here is the first bit of my chapter on “The Warrior” archetype.

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Sauteed Apple Salad

By Rebeka Carpenter (Hollyhock Head Chef) & Tecuana Wooldridge (Hollyhock 1st Cook)

Tecuana Wooldridge, one of our 1st Cooks, made this simple and delicious salad yesterday for lunch for 75 people. Our wonderful gardeners have been busy harvesting apples from our many trees, so we put them out in our communal fruit basket to enjoy and we cook them at most meals at this time of year.  We start with the early transparents, which are great for a quick nibble and most certainly for baking and apple sauce.  Then we move into other varieties as we wind down from summer and into fall. These include many of our old trees from homesteading of years past, variety names unknown.

This salad is best with tart apples. We used a mix of 2 varieties from our old trees in the Hollyhock garden. Our weather is so amazingly beautiful in BC at this time, so making a quick, easy, barely-cooked and fast put-together dish is just the thing to nourish us. We now have ample space in our day to enjoy the outdoors for a hike or a swim to cool off, or to take on a picnic on the water in a kayak or boat, or simply to the beach or lake and soak up the sunshine.

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