Methodology

How might we do this at Liwanag?

We believe that the answers to our most burning and deepest questions, the solutions to our most pressing dilemmas and conflicts, the sources of our greatest needs do not lie in any one person’s domain. They lie inside all of us, and they lie around and beyond us—collectively. The answers are brought out when we are brought together in certain ways and states of being. Only then can the emergence of new realizations, ideas, even beliefs about the way forward take place.

Otto Scharmer, a senior lecturer at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management and co-founder of the Presencing Institute, describes this process best in his book called Theory U (see diagram below). It proposes that the quality of the results that we create in any kind of social system is a function of the quality of awareness, attention, or consciousness that the participants in the system operate from.

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True change can only take place with the transformation of the human heart.

We have found that engaging in the following modalities brings us closer to a state of collective thinking and co-creativity necessary for us to birth the next step in our evolutionary path.

  1. The Art of Inquiry.  Question-ing takes a lifetime to perfect, for the most interesting questions flow from a deep well of insights and experience.  The more we understand, the more fine-grained our awareness of the negative space—that unknown place that holds so much, that is so rich in potential—will be.  The more we learn about the world, the more we realize how much more there is to know about it.
  2. Circle Work. In a circle, there is no beginning or end, no one higher or lower, no thought better or worse, no all or nothing. An elder said the Circle is the birthplace for the new human.  Here, we will engage in true dialogue, which means new meaning moving through a group. We will be speaking from the heart, listening with a willingness to be changed, clearing space among us and inside us for something new to come through, seeing the gift of connection and synchronization through a different frequency of conversation that invites the higher Self in us to speak.
  3. BalayBalayan (or Down Home Collective) Storytelling. We believe in the power of story to transform our lives and our world. What is happening in the world around us is an expression of the collective story we hold in our belief system that gets played out in the world. Except most of the time, we don’t observe and understand this inner story that we’re playing or living out; so the story itself is running us and our lives. Through revealing to each other the stories we have been playing out within these social movements, we will gain a more holistic and deeper view of what we understand about how the world works, the purpose of our lives and our role in making the world “a better place”. Add creativity, resourcefulness, duwa (Cebuano for play), innovation and improvisation into the mix and we can change the story of our lives and our future.
  4. Art. Expressionist painter Paul Klee said, “Art does not represent the visible; it makes visible.” This is the gift of the art forms of dance, photography, music—to see the unseen, to invite Spirit into the dialogue. Art serves as a doorway to seeing and listening to what is showing up, what is being born and what is being asked of us. It touches us in a way that helps us to access parts of ourselves that hold a larger wisdom—our hearts, our bodies, our intuition, our imagination and creativity
  5. Open Space. When we let go of our need to control, need to know, need to be right or correct, and open up to the Universe of our Self and others’ Selves. In doing so, we put ourselves in a larger, unplanned (in our minds anyway) conversation and we touch upon a larger design we have only barely touched. Whoever comes are the right people. Whatever happens is what is meant to happen. When it begins and ends is the right time. These are the tenets of open space, and can be fully practiced through a willingness to be very present to what is happening – without judgment or blame – to listen deeply and throughout and to trust the process