Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Message from a supporter

"Welcome back! Glad you have Re - -Turned!"

This message came to me in an email today from one of New Horizons supporters. Short as it was, it prompted me to respond with the following comments. I liked what came of it. My response might be of general interest here and/or useful to Possible Human, Possible Society Study participants.

My response is as follows. (Also posted today on Anastasia The Storyteller.)

Dear “Anonymous”

Please feel free to forward this message.

Thank you for your email message. I am grateful that you chose to offer me your perspectives on my present "Great Turning."

My response to your message follows.

I invite you to continue the dialogue that connects us and your view from outside and mine from the inner. I do, also, have some perceptions of the outer as well as input from others. Continuing to converse in meaningful, growth producing ways such as in Possible Human, Possible Society Study interviews, our Think Tank, storytelling and New Horizons Small “Zones of Peace” Project group presentations and programs are keys to this unfolding dialogue in the thinking paradigm of New Horizons.

“Turning,” as I am meaning it in my “Tis A Gift To Be Simple” article, is a spiritual discipline, luv. So I have not re-turned to anything, physically from anywhere. I am where I always am, physically, and, yet, still I am “turning” spiritually. On the physical plane, one need only reach out to me, personally, to get a personal response as you are receiving here.

Please re-read the “Tis A Gift To Be Simple” article and postings from both blog sites to pull forth additional conversation points.

As I live my life as a shaman, journeying endlessly from earth plane to the ethers, this does not always allow me to write for public presentation. Meditation and contemplation are timely pursuits. However, I am delighted to have been missed and will always do my best to respond to individual requests to the best of my ability and as quickly as I can.

Absence of my blog postings is not a sign of my leaving. Should this be otherwise, such as in the case of medical emergencies etc., Sue deVeer or Lisa Boyer, my board members, would no doubt, if appropriate, let people know.

I am regretful if it seems I have gone away, please let me know what else you might need from me and I will do what I can to accommodate, if I am able.

In terms of the study, we are now requesting college interns to assist us and the formation of an advisory board to assess study findings. Volunteers from our base of study participants have also been requested, but so far have no takers. Much is to be studied and assessed as this study and our various Small "Zones Of Peace" Project are enormous undertakings, needing as much support as possible at this time.

Please do use the blogs for your information gathering, though daily or even consistent weekly postings are not possible at this time without the assistance of volunteers. We are in the midst of a very revealing study and data gathering with our Possible Human, Possible Society Study.

The study in now beginning Round 2 of its mission. Approximately 70 people have so far been interviewed; some only briefly, others in-depth. Round 1 means the first year cycle of the study process. Round 1 with addendums for various phases completes August 30. Round One with its various additions included:

o Serene Survivor Inventory
o Lifestyle and History Inventory
o Peace Buddy Inventory
o Community Unity Building Inventory
o Addendum, Labor Day, 2012

There is still much research to do ahead with both new participants and those already onboard. However, we are pleased to announce that all present participants will soon be eligible to receive a draft copy of our submission, if permitted, to Murat's new forthcoming book, Ahmsta Kebzeh: The Science of Universal Awe, Volume II, due out, likely, before the end of the year.

We will await permission from Murat's administrative office for this before we proceed, however. So please be patient and plan to buy your early copy of the entire book as soon as it goes on sale.

An obligation will accompany receipt of this manuscript by present study participants. The obligation will be that the submission entitled "Doing Our Love" is read, contemplated and discussed as a teaching tool, one on one or in coming Think Tank meetings or other Small "Zones of Peace" Project programs (i.e. the Bus Ride Story Adventure series etc.). This will allow current participants to continue their active participation in the study, if they choose and go deeper and deeper, higher and higher with us as possible humans building a possible society.

Current plans suggest, of course, that all study participants to date are appreciated for their contribution. However, only a select 20% in each of the four categories will be included for ongoing data collection. If you, or any of the people you introduced me to, wish to be included in the 20% from the to date participants, please let me know.


Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Science of Universal Awe

Behind the scenes of New Horizons Bus Ride Story Adventure (original story by Murat Yagan).

Murat Yagan's new book and our contribution to it.

Ahmsta Kebzeh:
The Science of Universal Awe,
Volume I
In May Anastasia and New Horizons were invited to submit an article for Murat’s forthcoming, new book Ahmsta Kebzeh: The Science of Universal Awe, Volume II.

The topic of our article is the behind the scenes foundations of our Bus Ride Story Adventure as well as our coming plans for the "adventure" series.

Our submission was mailed in for our August 15 deadline. Wasn’t that just yesterday? Well, yes it was!

Actually it went out at sundown the night before which we were advised was also the end of Ramadan, celebrated by dear friends of ours.

The process of writing and editing this article has been a most profound experience for our board, also a behind the scenes undertaking of New Horizons while our annual meeting was being delayed. (Maybe all was just as it should be.)

Once the final review and editing of this article are completed by Murat and his support team, the unpublished, pre-publication final draft of it will be emailed to Possible Human, Possible Society Study interviewees as a thank you gift for participation, unless we are asked not to do this. It is expected, at this time, that the entire 10 page article will be published in its entirety.

If you are a Possible Human, Possible Society interviewee you should find this to be a most enlightening piece as some insightful comments are made in it about our study findings and our March Abkhazian Dinner.

Look for details on our article submission and Murat’s new book, coming soon!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Annual Review Time

July and August bring New Horizons Annual Board Meeting time, short, mid and long range planning. Next year at this time, we want to be where? And, how did we get here from where we were last year last year at this time?

Last year, as many new people were being introduced to New Horizons, particularly through our Possible Human, Possible Society Study, we wanted them to know what a big package of tools for peace building we had in our medicine bag of healing gifts to share. But mostly, as the study moved into action, we wanted to discover what others had in mind from their own bag of tricks to help carry this country of ours forward to its highest potential in the coming years. This is what the study set off to discover when it was launched as a test on August 1, 2011.

(Officially we defined January 1, 2012 as our formal launch date, with December 31, 2015 to be the completion date for our intended four years of data gathering.)

In the spring of this year, following our (Almost) Annual Abkhazian Dinner, study participants, having shared their hopes and fears and dreams, led us to want to support their intentional progress and transformation. We are, definitely, all in this together, this “possible society in motion” process.

So knowing that Murat’s Bus Ride Story had been pivotal in achieving the transformation of New Horizons since our massive changes began in 1998, we next sought to offer our bounty by refining this beautiful teaching story, initially introduced at the dinner, for broader public appeal and application. We are deeply involved in this agenda now.

As our board reviews this current activity as well as others of the past year and plans for the next, we are hoping to attract more and more commitment from individuals to build community unity together at the grassroots level and to collectively reach for our dreams in the realm of AWE, with our feet on the ground of our local communities and in pockets of community and family. This posting is a preview of what is coming out of our behind the scenes meetings and planning presently at New Horizons.

Our annual board meeting, traditionally held in July was postponed this year due to several family priorities. However, you can look for board-related news, from here forth, as we filter it out, before and after the meeting, through the end of September. The meeting is now tentatively re-scheduled for early September.

Board members, preparing their agendas for this annual meeting, will also be gathering their perspectives and polishing them for public reports and announcement. In particular, expect to find more and more commentaries and details on the findings, thus far, of our Possible Human, Possible Society Study and plans for our Bus Ride Story Adventure series as we prepare it for both private groups and public presentations.

This past year has been quite a year for the New Horizons Support Network, Inc.!

Friday, August 3, 2012

By The Stream

The Bus Ride Story Adventure and the Chinese menu

By the side of Sue (and Paul’s) gently burbling trout stream, we spread out our notes, handout papers and chairs. An old stone wall behind us serves as a teachers’ desk while a great maple tree canopy shades us from the hot midday sun. The setting is picture perfect and we are well-prepared to offer our personal best.
Be in the flow with us.

This day, again, our Bus Ride Story Adventure moves forward, heading in the right direction, strengthened personal and communal well-being, with Sue and I certain we will sparkle this day as we have done many times before.

So we set ourselves, optimistically and energetically, out on our course, presenting our program to a generously attentive audience. Still we do not sparkle, we do not shine. We have a well-worn map to the magic kingdom. We have traveled there many times before. But we have no magic wand to materialize it before us this day, not quite yet with our typical shine this day.

The right elements we have come to depend upon for our usual successes are served up. However, they don’t quite come together and crystallize into fairy dust as they have before. Somehow they are not yet arranged to best advantage. So we come off a bit like a feast with too much to eat.

I am the chef and I, too, leave hungry though still happy and satisfied, knowing that something delicious has been imbibed although there was more that we wanted. Having access to the menu as well as each ingredient, in a day or two I will know what is missing. As insight comes, I realize we have served up something, a bit like an all you can eat Chinese buffet.

Hungry as we finish, we have had our feast yet still yearn for more without knowing what else it was that we want. By Tuesday, our regular weekly meeting day, Sue and I, are already .planning for our next feast, having discovered some of our missing ingredients

We set off last Sunday on rehearsal day #3, discovering, as we progressed, that viable teachers, particularly in this day and age, must, first and foremost, always be as ready to learn as to teach. From the teaching position, we learned that the source of greatest fulfillment that we can offer, as taken from Murat’s translation of how exceptional communities function (see “Building Up A Kebzeh Community”), is to instruct our travelers on how to pack their travel bags with the essentials of exemplary human virtue and character.

Each time we present, we keep being vividly reminded of this; people are eager to find out what we know and can share to better ourselves as individuals and collectively. These essentials are the key. Our Possible Human, Possible Study findings, thus far, underscores the lesson:

How we treat one another on a day-to-day basis is the foundation of an exceptional community.

How starkly reminded we are of this as the most fundamental of principles. How difficult the application, the essentials, surprisingly, unclear to most, especially as a formula for systemic change, societally. (Read Murat’s original “Bus Ride Story”, as edited by Sue, to see the brilliance of how he presents this formula within the context of an imaginary “social game”, the Bus Ride adventure.)

Sue and I are priming ourselves to place our new Small “Zones of Peace” product, the Bus Ride Story Adventure, in the full public domain before long. However, for just a bit longer, we must linger in our semi-public preview, our rehearsal “public” made up of an audience of friends.

For now, who else can we count on to contribute the patience and generosity of their time, astute insights and caring respect for our still somewhat stumbling performance as we continue to polish our travel package? Charity – and exceptional community building begin at home.