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Summary for May 12 -- Mystery

Tonight we explored the need for Mystery. I've only found this listed as a need on one list, but it strikes me as a powerful need. The need to step beyond the boundaries of what is already known into what is yet to be known. One of my teachers described confusion as a higher state -- it's only when we are confused that we realize we don't already know all the answers and are open to learning something new.

Our grounding exercise used movement. walking around the room, paying attention to our body in movement, our relationships to others. We played a movement game that explored our relationship to past, future and present, then ended by finding "our own space".

We began discussing the topic with an exploration of what other needs seem related to mystery, and the list grew quickly to include: growth, stimulation, play, risk-taking, learning, aliveness, discovery, trust, faith, connecting with something greater than ourselves and spontaneity. We also talked about what needs seem like the opposite to mystery: clarity, safety, order, to know and predictability. We took a few moments to practice "the cradle of compassion" exercise for those two sets of needs. This involves "holding" the need for mystery in one hand and for order in the other, remembering we have both needs, then exploring how those needs might come together for us -- or even just to recognize that we have both. People shared very different reactions to the exercise, but in most cases expressed an integration of the two in some way.

We worked with Constellation practices -- our relationship to "Mystery", "Love", "Loss" and "Self".

Then we broke into pairs to talk about a past or current experience where something went on we didn't understand at the time, or that we don't fully understand while we are in it. Our listener attempted to hear us with compassion and empathy. Several people mentioned not knowing where that sharing would lead, but the opportunity to be heard helped us be able to hear ourselves more deeply, and create a deeper or unexpected self-understanding around the topic. It was an intimate time of sharing.

We finished by drawing a symbol on a piece of paper that represented some aspect of mystery for us, and shared those images with one another. The evening seemed to create a powerful appreciation for how mystery contributes to our lives, and how its possible to celebrate and honour the importance of mystery instead of avoiding or ignoring it.

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