There are no individual solutions to systemic collapse. A future for humanity means reweaving our frayed threads of togetherness into a fabric that is stronger than we could ever be in our individualized existence. Especially when our collective capacity for doing so is at its lowest ever given our atrophied collaboration muscles.
If we are to pull through this, some of us will be called to take on what Miki calls “needs choreography” – the capacity to weave together everyone’s needs so that more and more of us experience what it’s like to come together to attend to everyone’s needs, even in challenging moments.
This course is designed to be an intensive introduction for those who want to learn how to do this transformative art form and support families, communities, organizations, and even divided stakeholders to realign with life.
The course is comprised of three 90-min sessions held on three consecutive days. The outline below is loose and may shift to adapt to needs, experiences, and situations as they arise in the course of our time together.
Monday: Why Capacity Matters: Freeing Ourselves from Patriarchal Overstretching
One of the hallmarks of patriarchal functioning is a complete disregard for limits. This includes the extractive economy that is destroying the planet just as much as it includes our own and each other’s capacity limits. Anything less than honoring these limits is continuing to use force against self and other. Cultivating tenderness, humility, and the willingness to believe the signals we get from within and around us, we soften our relationship with everything. This session focuses on how, especially as practitioners committed to a world that works for all, we can integrate this gentle approach, model it even while being fully mobilized, and support others in doing the same.
Tuesday: Needs, Impacts, Resources: Building Blocks of Integrative Decisions that Work for All
Most of us are habituated to navigating life, and making decisions with others, based on what should happen, who is at fault when anything doesn’t work, and who deserves what. When we remove all this and open, especially through the door of surrendering to capacity, to look directly at what is simply true, we discover the possibility of replacing should’s with needs; shame and blame with clean descriptions of impacts; and deserve and fairness with accurate assessment of available resources. Then we can experience the radical simplicity of making decisions based on how to move resources from where they exist to where they are needed with the minimal unwanted impacts and based on full willingness. That is a door to heaven even within the limits of our devastated world.
Wednesday: Needs Choreography: Leaning on All Available Capacity to Dance Together for Liberation
With the collapse of the commons in particular, modern humans lost our capacity to dance with each other to optimally attend to needs within available means. Rebooting this capacity is sacred work. Not everyone will accept the imperative to stretch into trusting life so much that we are willing to surrender to the possibility of not getting our needs met because we know that life ultimately works when we all surrender. Sometimes being needs choreographers means going on faith when our trust is low, so that we can hold and navigate both our own needs and those of everyone around us, even when those others don’t do the same, with the purpose of finding pathways that optimize available capacity in relation to all known needs. This is a tall order spiritually because we have lost the trust in mutual influencing as the most precise measure of collective capacity. This work invites those of us who are willing to shape ourselves after the image of the Boddhisatva, who returns to life when offered Nirvana in order to support the liberation of all.