Morning Circle – Daily
Every morning at 9:00 AM we’ll gather for appreciations, announcements, and..
Group Bonding – Multiple presenters
Over the years we’ve been building a culture that supports intimacy by teaching skills for healthy boundaries, handling painful emotions, holding space for others’ process, and so on. Now it’s time to take it to the next level. When the need arises to give difficult feedback or address something that’s getting in the way of getting close to another person, many times we still let it go, not wanting to ruin a happy moment or create a rift. But in reality, we’re keeping ourselves from intimacy when we could have it. When we’re willing to tell another person what’s keeping us from getting closer, we actually get closer.
In the “Going Deeper” spaces, we’ll have a chance to share difficult truths, intimate appreciations, and vulnerable parts or ourselves. Let’s get beyond this kind of sharing being an extraordinary experience, to where it’s an ordinary everyday thing. Every day we deepen our connections. Consider the possibility that we have no idea who our closest friends could be once we start sharing at this level. We have no idea what could happen when we really give our relationships our deepest attention.
ZEGG Forum – the Forum Team, Daily
Forum (http://www.zegg-forum.org/index_en.phtml) was created at ZEGG, an intentional community in Germany, and its sister communities as a way of promoting transparency and mutual understanding among community members. ZEGG members found that decision-making meetings often got derailed because of emotional conflicts and undercurrents that were not known to or understood by all. In Forum, each individual’s experience could be seen and understood, leading to greater empathy and creativity in the community. Now, many residential and non-residential intentional communities have adopted Forum as a way to maintain ongoing connection, intimacy and understanding.
The goal of Forum is to reveal what is alive but not known to all. The community sits in a circle, forming a stage for one person at a time to stand and show what is true for them. Facilitators may assist the person (or “presenter”) to reveal themselves more deeply. Afterward, community members may offer reflections, or “mirrors,” on what they saw.
One of the gifts of ZEGG Forum is that it allows us a space to appreciate every perspective without taking it on as “truth.” Every voice has its own poignancy, its own wisdom, its own truth, that does not negate the wisdom and truth of other perspectives. Allowing all voices to surface and be known can lead to a profound and unexpected integration within a community. We tend to think that events leading to painful experiences and conflicts are bad, because they feel bad in the moment. However, when we open ourselves and compassionately witness what is happening for everyone, these experiences can be gateways to greater closeness, understanding, and love. When conflict emerges, whether or not we are in a formal Forum space, we can choose to listen in this way. This deep listening sustains and nurtures community life and relationships.
Sensual Space – Daily
The Sensual Space is a place for structured and unstructured education and exploration of sensual and sexual issues. This space is a resource for those who wish to make use of it; none of the core workshops will take place in the Sensual Space. There will be an orientation for people interested in using the Sensual Space on Saturday evening.
Orientation & Connection – Friday, evening
Who are the people at this gathering? Some of us are excited and nervous newbies, some of us are working through many issues related to polyamory and some of us have arrived at a place of ease in our alternative practices. We’ll spend much of the time moving around, meeting new folks and deepening existing relationships. Let’s find out who’s here and what we have to offer each other!
Consent Talk & Snuggle Party
Together, we will lay the foundation for a consent-based culture with discussion and experiential exercises. We will practice sharing clear boundaries and on-going feedback while connecting with others. And we’ll open up a sensual playground to explore consensual, platonic touch! No one is required to touch another person in this workshop; observation is full participation.
Visioning/ Boundaries – Saturday Morning
Mmm, that glorious moment when we are giving exactly what our partner wants to be receiving! Sometimes we find that “sweet spot” spontaneously—but more often, we find it through clear communication and feedback. How many of us say “yes” to things we don’t actually want out of guilt or a fear of losing connection? In many ways, “no” is the most daring and intimate response possible – if I can hear your “no”, I can trust your “yes.” Let’s practice finding that sweet spot of mutual “yes” —through a series of juicy experiential exercises we’ll offer and/or request touch, negotiate the touch we want, and give verbal and nonverbal feedback on the touch we receive. And we will take conscious time to consider and share our visions for the event!
Emotional Intelligence for Sustainable Relationships – Saturday Afternoon
What would relationship, family, community be like if everyone realized that their feelings were theirs to channel as they chose? What if every surge of emotion was seen as an invitation to connect with their deepest self and rise to a new level of awareness and love? What if our happiness no longer depended on others? The more we do our own personal work, the more available and loving we are in the moment. We no longer cling to rules and impose agreements that we hope will keep our intimates from triggering painful emotions in us; we welcome those emotions, work through them, and delight in our connections whatever form they might take.
Exploring Gender Socialization – Saturday Late Afternoon
Sarah & Indigo
From the moment of birth (“it’s a girl!”), children are identified by gender. This shapes almost every aspect of their lives and relationships. But as we learn more about gender, its significance gets murky, especially once we learn about LGBTPQ??? What is it that defines our gender? Which of these characteristics are essential, and which are created by the culture we live in? What effect has growing up in a strongly gendered society had on ourselves? Are there alternatives? How do we shift unwanted patterns to relate more joyfully to ourselves and others? There will be a presentation on what has been learned from many sources about gender, including the latest discoveries in neuroscience, followed by a group discussion.
Intimacy in Community – Saturday Evening
Sensual Space Orientation – Saturday Evening
Sensual Space Opening – Saturday Night
The Sensual Space is a warm and inviting space to explore Connection & Intimacy by engaging all of the senses. This is a space to lounge together after spending the day learning communication and intimacy tools – the perfect place to practice communication and share affection in a relaxed and sex positive atmosphere. We will give an introduction to the space and we will practice the “Safe Sex Elevator Speech.”
After the Sensual Spacee Orientation, those who wish will proceed to the Sensual Space for its official opening. All are invited to explore the Sensual Space – the opening activities will be sensual but nonsexual, and the Sensual Space Team will create a clear transition when the space becomes open for sexual connection.
Archetypal Grief Ritual – Sunday Morning
In this archetypal ritual, we will collectively hold space for deep emotional release and healing from boundary crossings and consent violations. We will create a space to express grief, pain, rage, or whatever arises in the moment. Community members will have the chance to choose between several roles: the archetypal role of those who have had their boundaries transgressed; the archetypal role of persons who have transgressed who are ready to be held accountable; and the role of the community witness. The injured group will have time to emote and express, as the others energetically receive and hold them. People will be able to move fluidly between the roles, as they feel drawn or called. And the ritual will end with space for participants to settle and integrate what arose.
Advanced Boundaries – Sunday Afternoon
Indigo Dawn & Kenmanheimer
While verbal consent can provide great clarity around our boundaries and desires, there are some times when non-verbal communication is sufficient, enjoyable, or necessary. In this workshop, we will explore what it feels like to give non-verbal consent, and how to communicate our boundaries and desires without words. We will experiment with reading nonverbal cues from others, and learn how to increase the subtlety with which we engage with others non-verbally, including during dance, touch, and sex. And finally, we will cover some important communication pitfalls, and ways to identify when we are mis-communicating, mis-reading, or mis-sing the mark in connection!
Nonverbal Touch Lab – Sunday Evening
Indigo Daw & Ken Manheimer
Sensory Exploratorium – Sunday Night
Boundary Crossings: A Deep Self Inquiry – Monday Morning
We will take people step by step through the process of recalling a boundary crossing and bring presence, awareness and curiosity to the stories, sensations and emotions that were happening before, during and after the experience. This will be followed by a process of deep sharing in a small group setting.
Boundary Crossings: Completing Unfinished Business – Monday Afternoon
You’ll have a chance to role play completing unfinished business with someone with whom you’ve had a boundary crossing incident.
Love Ceremony – Monday Evening
Indigo Dawn & Sarah Taub