2008.08.24 08:00 - We are Young and Finding our Way

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    This Sunday morning, at 8 am SLT, we had our weekly PaB guardian meeting.  More than half of the 33 guardians attended part or all of the meeting, 17 in total:

    Adams Rubble
    Avastu Maruti
    Caledonia Heron
    Doug Sosa
    Fael Illyar
    Gaya Ethaniel
    Genesis Zhangsun
    Maxine Walden
    Neela Blaisdale
    Pema Pera
    Pia Iger
    Riddle Sideways
    Solobill Laville
    Sky Szimmer
    Stim Morane
    Storm Nordwind
    Wol Euler

    Here is the log of the meeting, which lasted for exactly one hour, without further comments.

    Pema Pera: Hi everybody! Nice to see such a crowd here coming together
    Pema Pera: We don't have a set topic for today
    Pema Pera: I do remember one point that Storm brought up, about whether we do a good job in conveying the background of the 9-sec exploration to new people
    Pema Pera: we could talk a bit about that
    Pema Pera: are there other angles anyone would like to bring up?
    doug Sosa: I am not sure those of us who know and practice the 9 sec talk enough about it in the regular sessions.
    Pema Pera: yes, Pia?
    Maxine Walden: it often feels a bit awkward to bring up the 9 sec practice, as if dashing the sponteneity of the moment in the session
    Pia Iger: I read last wk guardain meeting's script, wow, so much was discussed already. I can tell many people can 'see" a lot in new light. My questions is how have we implied the seeing to daily life
    Pia Iger: we talked a lot, but did we walk it?
    Pema Pera: yes, very good point, Pia, and Doug, you are voicing something very similar as what Storm said, I think
    Pema Pera: we may want to refocus a bit
    Pema Pera: getting more back to the original starting point
    Faenik: なるほど^^
    Maxine Walden: not sure what you mean Pema
    Storm Nordwind: Yes, my point was that I have been surprised how some people who have been many times to the sessions have still a hazy or confused idea of the practice.
    Pema Pera: well, the 9-sec exploration is a joint adventure, Maxine, and we can all report on how we experience the practice and also how it affects our life
    Caledonia Heron: maybe they are not doing the practice Storm
    Pema Pera: if we do that more of the time, newcomers will get more of a sense of what we are doing
    Pema Pera: and we can stimulate each other to explore more deeply
    Storm Nordwind: Cal, I'm not sure how they can if they aren't sure what the practice is! :)
    Pema Pera: it is probably a catch 22
    Caledonia Heron: agreed
    Faenik: why not?
    Caledonia Heron: and, one can describe plus point to resources and people come without being prepared anyway
    Neela Blaisdale: Could we designate one meeting a week where part of the discussion was catching up newcomers?
    Neela Blaisdale: or too cumbersome?
    Pema Pera: what I mean by refocusing is not a switching or a leaving out of parts of what we do, but a switch in emphasis -- it is fine to talk about personal experiences, and it is fine to sprinkle in more intellectual or metaphysical questions, but both would ideally be tied to the actual explorations that we are doing
    Caledonia Heron: I would prefer not to Neela
    Wol Euler: (tricky, Neela, because of the timezones.)
    Solobill Laville: Why, Cal?
    doug Sosa: I have noticed that almost always one of those present tells the newcomers enough, and they are quick to "get it." I think it is more the frequnt ones among us who seem to not turn to the 9 sec.
    Pema Pera: yes
    Caledonia Heron: well, if it was *your* session Solo, it might be ok :)
    Solobill Laville: hehe
    Pema Pera: I think that for most of us present, we got a lot out of the 9-sec practice already in the first week, right?
    Storm Nordwind nods
    Solobill Laville: yes
    Caledonia Heron: sure
    Pia Iger: (I can gather basic 9-sec ideas in a folder, so new comer can go there and read details. I just come across the early session Pema talked about his inspiration from book TSK.
    Neela Blaisdale: Or could we have a poster at the pavillon with links to the resources? So new people could access easily
    Fael Illyar: Yes, I had huge effects the first week.
    Storm Nordwind: Pointing to things people can read does work for some people's learning styles
    Caledonia Heron: hey Sky :)
    Pema Pera: I think PaB has two very strong pillars as a foundation: the 9-sec trick and the community we have built -- and it seems that we have been swifting from the former to the latter ; it is all a matter of balance of course
    Storm Nordwind: *does NOT work for some people's learning styles!
    Solobill Laville: yes, both Storm
    Gaya Ethaniel: _/!\_
    Pia Iger: or at least GOC has a place to copy the details for new comers at real time.
    Caledonia Heron: hey Stim :)
    Fael Illyar: Hi Stim :9
    Storm Nordwind: I can see some merit in having a "Basics" meeting once a week (plus extra for timezone)
    Gaya Ethaniel: _/!\_
    Faenik: why not?
    Pema Pera: Also, the wiki could be used more effectively
    Stim Morane: Hi Cal, others
    Caledonia Heron: that requires an infrastructure
    Maxine Walden: Hi, Stim
    Solobill Laville: Or a volunteer...
    Caledonia Heron: yes Solo, the infrastructure :)
    Solobill Laville: :)
    Neela Blaisdale: yes I was just looking at the wiki and the web blog and it is hard to find what the current practice is since it has changed from the original
    Caledonia Heron: yes, the morph is not represented well
    Pema Pera: perhaps the compilation of excerpts may help, as a point of reference
    Pia Iger: The homepage can have link to basics of 9-sec
    Pia Iger: so once new ppl go to wiki, they can see what our practice is.
    Pia Iger: clearly
    Adams Rubble: Yes, the basics on the Wiki. I am interested in the point Cal raised about not being prepared. Should the GOC be preparing for sessions in some way?
    Storm Nordwind: It needs to be very very simple. Like "New visitors start here" visible everywhere! :)
    Neela Blaisdale: I think that would be great Pia
    Pia Iger: yes, storm
    Faenik: could be
    Pema Pera: we have a hints page, on both the blog and wiki, prominently -- does that not work?
    Pema Pera: should something be changed there?
    Caledonia Heron: good question, I was thinking at the participatory level, hard to share if you have no current 9sec practice
    Pia Iger: they are very wordy.
    Storm Nordwind agrees
    Neela Blaisdale: Its hard to find what the current practice is I think
    Pema Pera: there is no "current practice"
    Pema Pera: there is the original one, drop what you have to see what you are
    Pema Pera: and then a few optional variations
    Pema Pera: perhaps that should be spelled out by itself, what I just wrote here?
    Adams Rubble: yes
    Caledonia Heron: I mean current in time Pema, if you're not doing it then what can you share, it's not a coffee club
    Neela Blaisdale: I guess I mean the variations
    Pema Pera: not everybody has to do the same practice
    Pema Pera: we can still share
    Adams Rubble: We have to do what works for us
    Pema Pera: at least half the effect of the 9-sec is the high frequency
    Pema Pera: almost more important that what it is you do
    Pema Pera: how does it effect your life if you turn away from the narrow focus on standard views frequently?
    Pema Pera: the specifc forms are embellishments
    doug Sosa: I am not sure about the frequency. In my case it quickly came to pervade much of my non 9sec existence, so i was in it mhc moethan i was doing the 9 sec explicityly.
    Caledonia Heron: sure, how can we circle back to the topic of informing newcomers effectively?
    doug Sosa: What counts is the reporting on the experience, whatever it is.
    Maxine Walden: maybe we are right here having some tussle between 'getting the practice right' and having the freedom of our own evolving experience about the practice, or from the practice
    Pema Pera: Cal, I think if we would spend at least, say, 1/3 of the meeting time actually talking about our experiences, then newcomers would quickly get a sense
    Pema Pera: as Doug also said
    Caledonia Heron: yes Pema, so it is incumbant upon the goc to stay on topic
    Faenik: ah :)
    Pema Pera: I don't want us to set any rigid guidelines but something like 1/3 about raw practice (the phenomena themselves), 1/3 about what we think it implies, and 1/3 just being silly and having fun ?
    Maxine Walden: in my experience there is hesitation is reporting evolving experiences which emanate from the practice
    Caledonia Heron: lol, not sure if you can meter fun :)
    Maxine Walden: as if those experiences may be off target
    Pema Pera: hehe, in time you can guesstimate
    doug Sosa: What maxine said, if it is true.
    Caledonia Heron: yes, good point Maxine
    Storm Nordwind: I agree, Maxine, that it needs a fair amount of self confidence to do that
    Pema Pera: if more of us do it more often, that should be less of a problem
    Caledonia Heron: people might not be sure if it's relevant, it is preferable to think the water is safe
    Solobill Laville: self confidence and a very supportive environment, yes
    Pema Pera: ah, here is an idea: we can start a session with one or more people reporting raw experience, putting it on the table so to speak, and then we can all talk about it -- like showing vacation pictures
    Adams Rubble: I would be more comfortable if you could give some examples of this being done well
    Pema Pera: Pia's excerpt team will give many examples
    Maxine Walden: so perhaps a balance between 'the practice' and evolving experiences
    Pema Pera: yes
    Pema Pera: and writing things during the practice will help!
    Pema Pera: we have neglected that almost entirely so far
    Maxine Walden: of course
    Maxine Walden: I think that must become a very individual thing, how much is written
    Caledonia Heron: I wonder how format requirements will affect the discussions;
    Maxine Walden: format requirements, Cal?
    Faenik: ah :)
    Caledonia Heron: depending on how committed anyone feels any given day, they may show up at a time when there is less requirement to perform
    Caledonia Heron: which kind of detracts from the overall
    Maxine Walden: ah, yes, think I see what you mean
    Sky Szimmer: I have a question.... sometimes when life is peaceful and doing the practice evokes a sensation that seems different, like much of what was described by Pema, Storm, Doug, and others... I find that sometimes I use that sensation for a lack of a better word as a standard of how things should always be, but then it seems to be wrong to create any standards with this kin dof thing
    Sky Szimmer: So, I tend to compare my moments
    Pema Pera: that's a great exploration by itself, Sky, starting from the raw experience in different background moods + life situations
    Pema Pera: and then to ask the questions you just asked
    Pema Pera: like a scientific lab: do an experiment, think about what it means, have a beer, in that order
    Caledonia Heron: I'm not sure these discussions can be compartmentalized easily
    Pema Pera: experience, implications, fun
    Sky Szimmer: but then my question is, should I be seeing that there is a similar quality throughout each moment
    Pema Pera: not rigidly, no, Cal
    Pema Pera: no should here Sky :)
    Sky Szimmer: yes. bad habit
    Sky Szimmer: but you know what I mean
    Pema Pera: open ended exploration
    Maxine Walden: maybe, Sky, you are also expressing the anxiety we feel when we are not sure, have no absolute marker, that there is change nearly all the time
    Maxine Walden: and we feel uncertain amidst the change we experience
    Faenik: why not?
    Sky Szimmer: i find that there are times when I absolutely try to be open to the practice, but then it doesn't feel open
    Caledonia Heron: if we choose to structure the time we may need to do a better job of communicating than we have to our newcomers :)
    Sky Szimmer: it doesn't quite feel the same
    Fael Illyar: when you "try", you're assuming you can't.
    Sky Szimmer: ok. let me rephrase.
    Caledonia Heron: yes agreed Sky, an ebb and flow sort of, sometimes more intense, sometimes more oblique
    Sky Szimmer: when i am consciously aware of the moment, then staying open, but not feeling open
    Pia Iger: you have expectation what "feeling open" is?
    doug Sosa: I like to do the 9 sec without preparation, and keep doing what i am doog (coasting wiht the momentum) and letting go of assumptions and seeing and being seen.
    Sky Szimmer: i guess i am saying that Pia
    Maxine Walden: it is easy to become frustrated with the descrepancy , Sky, rather than just be observant
    doug Sosa: I find that being tired, cranky, sleepy, or distracted makes the practice more, not less, worthwhile, because mind is revealled in these moments.
    Solobill Laville nods
    Maxine Walden: of the wished for state and the felt one. Doug may be sharing his experience in these states
    Sky Szimmer: i don't know if i am wishing for anything. but it seems what i am doing is noticing differences in my degree of openness
    Sky Szimmer: and with a bit of expectation of what "feeling open" is
    Sky Szimmer: in reference to the earlier discussion, I would have to agree with Maxine about a hesitation to report and talk about the experiences
    doug Sosa: why?
    Faenik is a hairy black ball with eyes and ears.
    Avastu Maruti: pardon my friends
    Caledonia Heron: maybe we are thinking of replicating how we hold this meeting (very content based) to the "at-large" meetings ... which would possibly support the suggestion of having "pab 101" meetings now and again...
    Wol Euler likes that idea.
    Caledonia Heron: I'm not crazy about having to goc a meeting like that but but would willing to carry my share perhaps
    Solobill Laville: Methinks "PaB 101" should at least be offered and seen if it meets a need...
    Storm Nordwind nods
    Pema Pera: one day a week?
    Pema Pera: thinking about time zones
    Caledonia Heron: you can notice the content quality of this meeting is more rich than many at-large meetings
    Pema Pera: yes!!!
    Adams Rubble: Time zones would be no problem if each week it moved up a time slot
    Maxine Walden: agreed, Cal
    Faenik is a hairy black ball with eyes and ears.
    doug Sosa: i think newcomers adapt quickly to group expectations. i've noticed that when people even casually sumble in, they get it. The issue of the seriousness or willingness of the morefrequent foks is at issue. 101 won't help that, just make it more bureucratic.
    Caledonia Heron: I would prefer to attend meetings like this ... so the question becomes how to do so and be inclusive to new people, drop-bys, etc
    Pema Pera: It is great to hear so many angles on how we can improve things. But let us not forget that things are already going extremely well, given that we've been at this only a few months, and have gathered 33 people who mostly didn't know each other at all.
    Storm Nordwind: I disagree doug. You only see the ones that get it in that format. What about the ones we lose because of the format?
    Pia Iger: I think all we need to do is for Goc to subtly suggest all partipant to stay on topic. That is all.
    Caledonia Heron: yes, agreed Doug ... not a fan of bureaucracy
    Sky Szimmer: with regards to this, I think the guardian has to direct the meeting some
    Pema Pera: So perhaps the best approach is to make some small adjustments each week, and give feedback here, and then a bit more the next week. No need to suddenly implement a new format . . .
    Solobill Laville: "bureaucracy" is a strong word for what we're talking about though
    Caledonia Heron: yes Pema, that is my preference
    Sky Szimmer: each guardian has to be mindful of this task of bringing the focus back to PaB actual practice
    Pia Iger: yes.
    Pia Iger: now we are being too open.
    Caledonia Heron: yes Sky., with some slack for fun :) for play :)
    Sky Szimmer: but then I think many participants prefer to chat about other related items
    Neela Blaisdale: And Pia's ideas of the links on the home page?
    Sky Szimmer: yes fun and play!
    Storm Nordwind: We need to do that anyway. That need not preclude 101 meetings
    Pia Iger: Neela, we will work on it. Pia needs some hands, though.
    Sky Szimmer: the Guardians should just be aware of new comers and direct meeting accordingly
    Sky Szimmer: right now, guardians aren't given too much guidelines with that, but maybe i am not informed
    Caledonia Heron: a lot of discussion to come around to "be a good meeting manager" :)
    Solobill Laville smiles
    Pia Iger: Thorberg was good at that.
    Faenik: ah :)
    Pia Iger: he would encourage people to stay on topic in a subtle way
    Sky Szimmer: hehe. we are doing it now.
    Pia Iger: There is a lot of room from one extreme of "totally let it loose" to "bureaucracy"
    Pia Iger: another exeme
    Pema Pera: It is great that we can air all these ideas for improvements! So there are two possibilities: airing is enough and will naturally improve things; or more structure is needed. Why not wait a week and see whether this airing is enough? If it isn't we can add more structure (principle of least action :)
    Caledonia Heron: maybe we can agree that the goc should frame the conversation in the way suggested; describe experience, what is that, free flow
    Gaya Ethaniel excuses herself and wish all a good day.
    Solobill Laville: Bye, Gaya
    Maxine Walden: agree with Pema's priciple of 'least action' at least at this point of our growth
    Caledonia Heron: yes, agreed Maxine... things are going really well, we are young and finding our way
    Maxine Walden: and doing amazingly well, I think, for all we are undertaking
    Caledonia Heron: it's not like there's a crisis or anything
    Solobill Laville: I prefer to start out slow, then taper off...so that works ;)
    Pema Pera: yes
    Pema Pera: well, perhaps on those notes we should wrap up
    Pema Pera: it's been an hour again!
    Pema Pera: how time flies
    Pema Pera: thank you all!!!
    Maxine Walden: yes, thanks to all
    Storm Nordwind: Let's let Pema get some sleep! :)
    Adams Rubble: Good bye all :)
    genesis Zhangsun: thanks bye :)
    Pema Pera: only 1 am here :)
    Pia Iger: bye, all.
    Caledonia Heron: bye :)
    Stim Morane: bye all!
    Pema Pera: bye everybody!
    Neela Blaisdale: Good to see everyoe again
    Fael Illyar: Ok, see you later everyone :)
    Solobill Laville: Bye all!
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