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Being Alive

I originally wrote this on Bowen Island, attending an Art of Hosting retreat. It reminded me of the counter cultural nature of Parker Palmer’s writing and events focused on his work. It is about communicating and seeing others as fully human.

In today’s divided world, this seems countercultural. An essential element to hosting and dialogue is listening to others in respectful ways. It does not mean we agree with them. What it means is we are open and listen to hear how they experience living their life, guided by one’s conscience and sense of values that ground us. Values give each of us strength, anchoring us and letting us understand what is proper and improper.

When we invite people into conversation, listen deeply, and ask questions which shake our certainty about the world we turn inward and focus on what grounds us to respond to them and help heal a hurting world.

Perching pensively–

Holding pen tentatively;

Senses coming,

In the midst of nature’s beauty.

Awakening–

Becoming aware;

Listening deeply;

In the midst of sounds flowing.

Breeze caressing gently–

Sunlight bathing softly;

Basking in these moments,

Resting in peace.

A colleague took this picture of me on top of Cates Hill on Bowen Island as I wrote and they were gracious enough to share it with me. It is spectacular with water and land in the panoramic view.

About ivonprefontaine

In keeping with bell hooks and Noam Chomsky, I consider myself a public and dissident intellectual. Part of my work is to move beyond (transcend) institutional dogmas that bind me to defend freedom, raising my voice to be heard on behalf of those who seek equity and justice in all their forms. I completed my PhD in Philosophy of Leadership Studies at Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA. My dissertation and research was how teachers experience becoming teachers and their role as leaders. I focus on leading, communicating, and innovating in organizations. This includes mindfuful servant-leadership, World Cafe events, Appreciative Inquiry, and expressing one's self through creativity. I offer retreats, workshops, and presentations that can be tailored to your organzations specific needs. I published peer reviewed articles about schools as learning organizations, currere as an ethical pursuit, and hope as an essential element of adult eductaion. I published three poems and am currently preparing my poetry to publish as an anthology of poetry. I present on mindful leadership, servant leadership, schools as learning organizations, how teachers experience becoming teachers, assessement, and critical thinking. I facilitate mindfulness, hospitality retreats. and World Cafe Events using Appreciative Inquiry. I am writing and researching about various forms of leadership, how teachers inform and form their identity as a particular teacher, schools as learning organizations, hope and its anticipatory relationship with the future, and hope as an essential element in learning.

7 responses »

  1. Much-needed wisdom…
    ”Listening deeply”

    Reply
  2. If nothing much seems without challenge this year, one ‘grace’ I’ve been gifted is the in person and awe-inspiring knowledge that as divisiveness and chaos increases, so too, does the sincere acknowledgement of any communication being one of ‘deep listening’ and how, simple words of gratitude long spoken, in the years before, are now regarded not with suspicion/or not heard, but embraced with sincere gratitude to have truly heard them – – for me, that has been both a sadness AND a silver lining, as more and more, folks yearn for a ‘harbor’ to drop anchor in and truly communicate with another, sans the hue and cry of those who still fail to listen… Beautiful poem and your intro to it, the words, were balm to my heart – today! 🙂

    Reply
    • Thank you for a wonderful comment TamrahJo. If we learn to listen deeply in challening times, will we carry it into less challenging times? It is a challenging time in so many ways. I am glad you found something in the post to help you lift yourself up a bit.

      Reply
  3. At this moment, being alive seems a luxury. The pandemic has taken so many lives.

    Reply
  4. Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:
    WELL-SAID AND THOUGHT!

    Reply

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