MISSION Sends Off Workshop Courage Soldiers
Seeing MISSION reach the tipping point in two years’ time does not seem to be an elusive feat with twenty more members committing to propagate MISSION Workshop Courage all over the country and the world. Apart from the workshops that Nicanor “Nick” Perlas himself is conducting to open twenty new nodes in the country before the year ends, the newly-formed global node and the existing Philippine nodes are bound to grow in numbers with more facilitators ready to conduct the workshop in their respective nodal territories.
Nick shares his excitement about the meeting of the different representatives from the different nodes who come from different sectors of society—business, government, civil society, activists, students, teachers, and young professionals—in the Facilitators’ Training. “I can remember exactly how each of you has manifested and continues to manifest your imaginality in so many different inspiring ways,” he said in e-mail sent to the participants a few days before the training.
The participants share not only MWC-related insights but also their knowledge on group dynamics, relationships and conflict resolution manifesting the emergence of a collective intelligence—"the wisdom of the whole." It is critical for everyone to participate, otherwise, “we won’t have an overview of the different ideas sitting in this room,” Nick explains in reference to drawing out input from the participants in a Workshop Courage.
What does it take for a facilitator to be ready? "Clone Nick,” the group offers. The joke proves to hold a rather profound meaning as the discussion goes along. It is evident in the questions, reflections and group interaction that facilitating Workshop Courage is “laden with responsibility” and “a sense of service.” The group resolves that one must have the right inner condition and must be constantly in touch with his imaginality. They coin the phrase “charismatic facilitation of Nick.” The group bursts into laughter. The best way to prepare, somebody says, is to be creative. The group agrees.
Being able to listen and being present in the true sense of the word are two critical points being highlighted in order for a facilitator to connect with the participants and be able to draw out their truths—thoughts, feelings, experiences. Workshop Courage, after all, is about the emerging realities and system of causes that create them as well as tapping into the True Self, sometimes called the Real Self, Higher Self and Creative Self depending on the input from the participants. Writing down what they say and using their language is essential, Nick emphasizes. He also cites some scenarios where the facilitator will have to reinforce the rules or simple agreements made before the workshop has started in order to keep the imaginal mood alive.
The profoundest of the discussions in the training is, probably, on the Journey of the Birthing of the Imaginal Self that is captured in the Lemniscate Process. It captures the same metaphor in the Inverted “U.” In that “gap” between Chaos” and “Enlightenment,” the group falls silent.
“All profound things and emotions of things are preceded and attended by Silence,” wrote Herman Melville.
Silence, said Pico Iyer, is "something more than just a pause; it is that enchanted place where space is cleared and time is stayed and the horizon itself expands." It is in the gap where the self communes with the authentic, with the real, with the creative. It is where the self taps into a Higher Source, a Higher Creativity, a Higher Purpose. It is where we start to feel the oneness—the non-duality of existence. It is where we clarify our intentions. Questions came after the silence—like, what of people who choose to go on retreat, in the mountains or in any higher place or dimension, to live a meditative life and not come back to the world? One of the participants believes that there are people whose duty is to pray for the world. “If you don’t return, you become irrelevant to the world,” Nick asserts. The I.O.N. in MISSION stands for Initiatives, Organizing and Networking. It is the container of imaginality. It is the image of the creative self.
Workshop Courage facilitation is a sacred task. It is where one realizes that change is possible— that there is a creative power to make it happen. It is a place where one realizes that true purpose has nothing to do with the self and that Providence moves when one commits to it.
The newly-trained facilitators committed to conduct the workshop within a month from the Facilitators’ Training last February 28, 2012 at Brgy. Libongcogon, Zarraga in Iloilo. They are: Corinna Zuckerman, Peter Crowe, Christian Gmelin, Philip Burroughs, Mirka Hurter and Louisa Mittmann of the global node; Asela Delariarte-Pe, Jose Pepito Pe, Jason Gonzales, Sam Prudente, Aurora Hugo, Frances Lacuesta, Joseph Teruel and Atho Dela Cruz of Iloilo; Felcon Rivera, Jude Cabangal and Ritchie Mortillero of Bayawan; Rico Colayco of Manila, Ma. Clara Rowena Ebdani of Cebu and Nerieza Suyom of Koronadal.
As of writing time, Corinna, Peter and Christian have already conducted their first workshop in Alegria, Cebu; Philip, Mirka, Louisa and Rowena in Cebu City and Ritchie and Jude in Bayawan.