Tonight I am at a community in Southern California. I spent the last few days with my friend Diane in San Clemente soaking in the surf and enjoying relationship and reflecting as tides rolled in the new year. Feeling quite thankful for all of the blessings in my life, most immediately now this eternal well-flow in my heart from the heart of the Source within.

I am at a 12 tribes community, which may be interesting to google if you aren’t familiar with their structures and intentions. Tonight we danced and sang and ate together and there was a lot of joy, earnest sharing, and communion. In my search for what is working for communities, I am especially impressed with this nightly ritual of sorts, where everyone young and small gets together and speaks from the heart as things bubble up from within. Everyone can speak from young to old, male and female, and the dancing is Israeli folk dancing. To me the dancing gets the chi moving, then the people regather into a circle and whoever feels touched to speak can speak and this can be anything they want to share (and often in relation to the morning teaching – which will happen at 6am tomorrow!), the intention here is to be spirit-led, to let the spirit flow through the people (this seems to have the potential to be a very cleansing and unifying process) and then there is song (which are picked as they well up in the hearts of the kids and people).
In my searching, I find that these structures can be very beneficial for groups of people. As someone said tonight at dinner, the community and its activities, its infrastructure are containers or the form that love embodied can take. The rhythmic structure of the nightly dancing, singing, coming together and speaking in community are wonderfully rich and unifying rituals to uphold within community.
While I don’t agree with all of the tenets of the community, I find the spirit of love and joy and so much beauty here. I hope to keep uncovering what is working for them and I feel challenged then to fashion it into a form which contains greater freedom. Yet from this community I seek knowledge in how structures serve the life force and visionary and inspired creation. I’ll keep sharing as I learn and, as always, am interested in any gleanings from your experience that you’d like to share in relation to these topics.

On the burner now:
How does structure enhance life and bring greater connection?
Do people all have to “believe the same thing as big t truth” in order to share structures filled with great intention and a unifying purpose?
How can we, as groups of people, fashion life-giving structures without limiting ourselves through not-completely life-giving thought forms?
For example, on the last one, it seems there is a lot of truth within the old and new testaments, and it is this on which this community is based, and it serves to unify them and gives them fodder for conversation, yet it is not The complete and only truth and it seems to abide by it as such is limiting. How can we be unified and what texts and structures can we use and how can we present them in a way that exudes freedom and choice and will it work? This question is a big one of mine- I’m going to keep prodding it.

And of course the question of will comes up. It was posited tonight that humans are inherently selfish creatures and therefore the will needs to be surrendered to the will of God in order for harmony and selfless action to exist within community, otherwise, as we see in the mainstream culture, the drive of the individual will will look to only take care of itself. With this statement in mind,
What is the balance between the individual will and the good of the community/the whole? Is the human will doomed or is there a way to take care of self and whole?

I believe there is. Incarnated and aligned with the spirit inside, we are drawn to actions which nourish and care for ourselves and we are enabled to step forth and share in community care. Still exploring this balance and what it looks like.

I come upstairs tonight after some good dinner conversations to find this little basket of goodies on the bed. An action of love in form. The great thing about this medicine of open-hearted sharing is that it’s contagious. Very thankful on this eve for this beautiful mirror of community and excited to keep prodding these questions. I’ll be posting more pics! There is a lot of beauty to share here. Peace!