Our campus is uniquely located in the Abbotsford Convent precinct in Melbourne’s inner east. We are immediately adjacent to the Collingwood Children’s Farm and nestled in a bend of the Yarra River.
In this first session of term 3 we talked about the characteristics of the Parents College, how they have evolved and how we want to move forward.
Brigitte started with a short mindfulness practice to centre and ground ourselves in the circle.
She then read the following poem from Otto Scharmer
PROTECT THE FLAME!
Sometimes I am alone
Sometimes I am connected
Sometimes I feel
A Light from within, around
A Light through the opening of our hearts
A light illuminating a Field
of Inspired Connections
of friendship and love
of a future that stays in need of us
That light and flame has been passed on to us like a torch
From those who acted from this connection throughout generations
Gandiji, MLK, Madiba and many millions more
A torch that one day in not too long
We will pass on to our children and generations to come
A flame that connects us across all cultures, religions, ages
A light that speaks to us, to me:
PROTECT THE SOURCE!
PROTECT THE FLAME!
CONNECT TO YOUR HEART.
When feeling connected in these ways
I feel elevated to another level
Beginning to live
in that light,
through that light,
for that light—
I am that light.
We spoke about what the group has meant to us. We appreciated the learning and the connection which the group enabled through the space we’ve created.
Over the last two terms the PC’s structure has organically evolved into a circle which is usually held by 2 people
– a host who opens the space, brings some flowers and a candle and hosts the conversation
– and someone who brings a teaching, a practice or simply a question for discussion.
Without any planning we always had clarity at the end of the session what theme or question we would bring to the next circle and who would be hosting.
Without a set program we had the flexibility to respond to the needs of the participants and questions which arose from parents’ contributions.
The Parents College can grow in many directions and this circle will not be it’s only activity in the future. However we talked about that it is important to continue to hold the space for us parents to hear each other’s stories and to learn deeper listening together. Given that a healthy community is a connected community we have been doing good work together so far and we wish to continue.
“The pattern that connects is the pattern that corrects” Gregory Bateson
There was discussion about the PC hosting official Parent Education events, but no clarity on any actions has resulted. In future meetings it will need to be discussed further.
We ended the session with questions regarding serving the emergence of collective wisdom,
what nurtures the social body of the school and what structures serve connection?
We talked about the connection between deep listening and wisdom and how being present is the condition for both.
We agreed that the theme for next session would be Wisdom and Presence and Chris Bolden offered to be the host.