Dear Helen, Rita and learning village friends! Thank you for this beautiful harvest and thank you all for expanding my heart and strengthening my belief in how we can live together and create the humanity and society we know is possible.
I want to share a story with you. My year started with my first Art of hosting training, in Kalundborg. I had practiced participatory leadership all my life, and I had just left my artistic social entrepreneurship Circus Cirkör after 12 years (in good hands) because I felt a strong pull to serve other organisations who wanted or needed change.
I had made one clear decision, to keep at least 25% of my time to the unknown, what I not yet knew or could plan for. Finding you all, this community and our shared practice was the reason, it took me not more than hours in Kalundborg to know this. Slovenia made it just that much clearer. I learned some pretty amazing things this year, as that of the power of asking for help and honouring vulnerability. For a worn in pioneer “always having answers to point out that the impossible is possible” it took the generosity of our community to break new grounds in me. ”never trust someone who cant ask for help” as Toke quotes.
I ended this year with all of you by my side on the 29:th, when I hosted a first of, what now is asked to be many, Sweden 3.0 gatherings. We have had a dark fall in our country, with nationalists and racists voices being stronger and a opposition in despair lacking clarity of vision, lacking conversations and stories of a society and culture we want and can be. Five weeks ago public friend called me about making a invitation for a 12 hour conversation. "A true call" as we would say. We borrowed the house of parlement, had to turn people down to fit the 60 the space could hold, who came from all parts of Sweden and society - leaders, politicians, artists, entrepreneurs and more. Friends at the learning village in Kopenhagen supported the call, Jan and Erik helped me design the 12 hour event on skype, Nanna and Johan came to record on the walls during the event, and Tracy visiting me helped me prepare and stay in centre. For 12 hours I was on my own and not at all – all of you being there with me. I found my self saying ”ah – now I need to step in to my David Reis and care fore the space and beauty” while the OS-conversations was steaming in the rooms. Took swings with the sword. Checked in with the grandmothers during café rounds. Lit candles in the centre and asked them to trust the process.
12 hours later at the check out circle I heard things like “this is the first time I can say I am proud to be Swedish” and “I felt more Swedish than ever before”. from people with and with out other ethnical background. “I have been in opposition all my life, now I have learned another way of honouring my beliefs and reach real change”, “it feels so good to be for something, not always against”, “I did not believe it possible but I feel hope for the future again”, “amazing to have conversations on such a high level and in a constructive way”, “I am no longer ashamed of being Swedish”, “I feel a huge gratitude”, “I now believe we can create a Sweden that hosts everyone’s potential”. And the party leaders and parliamentarians that attended shared their gratefulness for this taking place at their workplace, bringing in the level of conversation they wish for to the room.
Over all they all shared their feeling of being a community, that they would not feel alone when they got back to their initiatives, cities, homes and positions. That they would feel the support from each other.
I am beyond words grateful that I had the opportunity to se that happened. To see others giving each other the gifts I have been given this year, the same feeling of support, co-creation and community.
This year is full of stories of like this, and full of you. To me Slovenia and this event linkes together to a beautiful proof that by being the change we want in the world, we can make it happened.
With love, hope and gratitude,