It is with a sense of privilege that I reflect upon the people and the events from the ‘When its NOT about the Food’ Seminar. The profound bravery of people to sit with themselves, and with each other. To sit with pain in a group setting requires both vulnerability and compassion. It requires a willingness to go to depth and to know self.
We journeyed that day to the very centre of ourselves, we peeled the onion, and yes there were tears. We asked of ourselves what we ask of the people we work with. We made ourselves vulnerable in order that we may grow.
I sit with the privilege of the richness that emerged – of growth and of change. I recognise that I will be forever changed because of the shared experiences of the group.
Our experience reminds me of the story of the velveteen rabbit. The story tells us “Real isn’t how you are made. Real is a thing that happens to you. It takes a long, long time. And once you are real, you can’t become unreal again. It lasts for always.” This was a weeeknd where we willingly sat with real, our rough edges, our shabby bits, and from this we cannot go back. Real we can now be with those that we work with. Inviting them too, to be real with themselves and with us, beyond the masks, beyond the story, with incredible capacity for growth and for change.
The powerful nature of acceptance, of being real, and the shifting of pain was witnessed in this group, each of our lives touched by one another and the stories shared.
In borrowing the words of Marianne Williamson, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.”
My hope is that we all may connect strongly with our values and that you strive to express them as deeply and as richly in your life. Those that chose to come to the seminar did so with a willingness to sit with the shadows of self, to sit with pain as ordinary people. As a result they shine brighter in the world, inviting others to shine also.
May the world shine brightly today wherever you are.