Monday, 8 July 2019
Dear Christine and Owen,
What brings me to the big room…
I don’t feel the need here to write about the small spaces in any detail… other than I suppose there were times when they may have been big spaces for me… but in time became cramped, tight, airless, bland and the restriction created sensations that might be called stress. The stress - which others may even call anxiety - is an energy repressed… an energy meeting a limit and it just keeps pushing at that boundary until enough energy is accumulated to break through. Delivered again… into space, and wonder, and possibility, and mystery, and not knowing.
There is a story…
about how for much of my life…. when I sought a bigger room… it was about going somewhere else… the bigger room was just somewhere else other than where I was. I caught this from my father who saw the bigger room in Australia, went there, found the room was not bigger or maybe that the room was too big… and returned to the UK… only to forget what he’d learnt and returns again to Australia… to discover again that what he sought was not there….
This became part of my story… seeking bigger rooms somewhere else…. so that when this energy arose within me I would think about physically moving. Dissatisfied with where I was. Where I lived (in the external world) was the problem…. it took a while to realise it was always the internal world. On a trip back from Hexham a few years ago, the penny dropped and I said to Owen something like “instead of moving to where I think ‘it’ is, [the thing that is missing]… what I need to do is bring into my life, my community what I need”. Attracting rather than chasing. And not only for me, but for everyone. And selfishly - it’s for everyone because I need be around people who are softening, emptying and warming. Here…I offer myself as nourishment for others and I need others to nourish me.
What else is there to say…
The big room is a space to learn, to practice, to explore the art of living…
I have come to understand that the art of living expresses itself in me, through me, through movement… dance… when meeting with anyone but particularly in the client/therapist space I am in movement and exploring the movement between us…. “how does your moving enact with my moving?” “how are we moved - physically, emotionally, cognitively?” “where do we dance? “what spaces do we dance into together?” “where do we not go?” “how do we ebb and flow?” Movement and dance is always mutual. Even the dance that appears not to move. The dance that is sitting still in a corner.
So I am curious about the dance of the big room. And how the big room will dance us.
To use process work language - we will dream each other up - we will generate our own wars - and then we get to work. It is not about stopping the wars… between couples and families… communities, ourselves… it’s not about not having the arguments… the discords…. it getting better at them… utilising them to soften, to melt the hard edges that separate us and make the other an outsider, a stranger and sometimes an enemy.
Creating, per-forming*… the art of living…. is an act of living… the question: what am I creating? what are we creating? right now, this moment?
* [per: for each; through, by use of] [forming: bring together, combine to create]
These posts are written and curated by Hayley and Owen, founding members of the big room cic.