Tuesday, February 1, 2011

People's Movements and Transformative Practice

Introduction by Liz Goodwin, with link to PMA Resolution, 2010

At this moment, protests continue in Cairo. An Egyptian Revolution is underway and President Hosni Mubarak's thirty year rule may in fact be coming to an end. This massive demonstration shook the world as it unfolded in the last week and reports, videos, twitters and photos circulated. It's clear that the movement is unique, a people's led, with youth or younger generations heading it up, high levels of organization, deep persistence, and people from all walks of life present.

Many write, sing, and speak about how inspiring this demonstration is to witness. And leaders of the revolution describe it as peaceful, even as the media and governments all over the world describe violent looters, count deaths, and paint terroristic pictures. Even so local protests join from afar and the reverberation is felt politically, socially, and economically across the globe.

Tonight - as I listen and watch women sing among tens of thousands of seated resistors or see photos like the one of a woman kissing a soldier on his cheek – I feel the reverberation. I am actually left wondering – yet again - about our process with TJP and where we are in our effort to form and sustain a project that situates transformative healing practice in larger movement based work. This is a concept we are exploring as a leadership council. We recently came to understand our structure in a new way, as a hub, a place where discussion and practice and experiential process around liberatory healing work can happen and get supported. We intended to retreat this month with organizations and individuals in the community who work at, or think at, this crossing. But without a viable space and other logistical questions unanswered, we decided to push pause - again.

This time our pause involves a new layer of conversation about how we might practice an environment of transformative practice. As a council, we are reading literature on this and returning to the question together in February. I wanted to share with you one of the documents we'll be reading - built out of this year's 2010 Social Forum People's Movement Assembly for healing and justice work. To read more about the PMA process and other resolutions, click here:


“Transformation,” as this resolution describes, “is an ongoing practice, a process where "one identity or self passes away and a new, radically altered one emerges. The new way of being is more integrated, resourceful and aligned. This is apparent to others in your presence, your actions and your increased capacity to respond based on vision, rather than reaction. This process is repeats itself and deepens through continued engagement in transformative practices and processes. The old, previous “form” sheds again and new emerges again."

To read the PMA resolution, click here.

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