On Sunday I went to a workshop on Joanna Macy’s ‘Work that Reconnects’, an approach that calls upon systems theory, spiritual teachings, and deep ecology. I knew what to expect as I’ve been to similar events and facilitated a few myself, but what struck me was how fresh it was. One of the facilitators remarked that such workshops are inevitably too short – there’s always more juice to be had.
Given that these workshops seek to reconnect, what’s broken? Mainstream Western culture has never understood the interconnectedness of the web of life and holds to an illusion of separate pairs; mind and body, reason and emotion, culture and nature. It’s all nonsense of course, but deeply entrenched.
Simply explaining why these dualisms aren’t real doesn’t work; you have to experience it, so that you can understand interconnectedness in your body. That kind of knowing – the kind you get from practical activity – is embodied and can have far greater effect on behaviour than just knowing something because someone told you so.