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Utasman Buffet — A Learning Cohort

You know how some learning friendships and colleagueships are so bounteous that having a journal nearby and pen in hand are utterly essential? The ones where you want to catch the ideas because they are good ones. This is the kind of learning relationship I feel with two friends and colleagues in New Zealand. Glen Lauder is a long-time friend, met first at an Art of Hosting training near Boston. He is a facilitator rich with insight, imagination, fierceness of purpose, clarity, and generous heart. Phillip Barker is similar. A gifted co-thinker and younger social entrepreneur. Inspiring. Honest. Gentle. Fierce.

Together we have committed to a deliberateness in learning, exploring, harvesting, and offering. Linking together these home bases (me in Utah, Glen and Phillip in Richmond and Nelson respectively, on New Zealand’s south island and Tasman Bay — it may not remain “Utasman,” but it is how I playfully think of it now).

Yesterday was the first of what will be several regular skype calls in the next year. For this time it was Glen and me. It had the feeling of starting to nibble at content and process of something very important. Bites that nourished and called forth my appetite for more. Insights that come in the company of friends. The beginnings of content and format that will feed the work that we offer together and individually (writing, coaching, workshops, programs, exploratory dialogues).

Some of this is here (my journal and pen were well used). Glen’s question, for example, “What are the qualities that bring aliveness into dialogue every day?” stayed with me as we shared stories of dialogues that have been flat, or stayed at a superficial level. We shared stories of dialogues that have popped also. Into what feels like a new kind of consciousness, accessible to all that are present. The way that showing up with full attention and presence (or intending / practicing this) births a new entity. A new organism that is the constellation of people in heart, mind, and more. It is the kind of work that Otto Scharmer gives much attention to, “presencing the future.” What if dialogue were a means of birthing a future as a living entity? I do think of dialogue this way.

Cheers to these beginnings — more to come.

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