The Next Event

OK,

so we had our shooting in Paris (not sure if anyone considers the daily casualties in places like Nigeria, Syria, Libya, Iraq to name just a few) and all in the western world seem to be grabbed by the drama, the strong emotions that come with it. Take a look back at this post https://geerthofman.wordpress.com/2012/02/01/on-human-interaction-four-levels/. I learned from Alan Seale (http://www.transformationalpresence.org) that a distinction can be made in four levels of human engagement:

  1. the drama; whose fault is it?
  2. the situation, the facts, how do we fix it as quickly as possible? It’s about making things OK again.
  3. level of choice: who do I want to be in this situation?
  4. opportunity; what is it that is really wanting to happen? What is the gift?

On levels 1 and  no learning takes place. It might be where mass consciousness is living.

On levels 3 and 4 things start to shift as we redefine our relation with the drama.

So in relation to the ‘drama’ in France (or any other of the many dramas around  the world) : What is the opportunity? What are the missing conversations? What wants to show itself that we have not been able or willing to see? My quick guess at the moment is that it is calling for a different  way of living together on the planet as one humankind. We can’t go on exploiting the earth and its inhabitants in the name of free market economy. As if trying to make as much money as possible is the dharma of mankind. We can’t go on cutting people out from the abundance we create. We can’t go on locking people away in endless suburbs with no perspective to a meaningful and fulfilling life. On account of the free market economy. So again, what wants to show itself through these acts of terror? Why are so many people immensely scared?  Why haven’t we been able to hear them? To listen to them? And work out a different way of peacefully and prosperously living together? Away from any kind of dogma. Why are we trying to make things OK again? OK for who? It’s time to change the game. We’re in this together…..

Peace be upon us,

 

Geert

 

 

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For a year that matters

So, well, yeah, the year 2014 has started. How many of your resolutions are still alive? How many have already been buried? How many did you make in the first place. For me, this year will be dedicated to three things:

  1. continuing my transformational and exec coaching work and workshop facilitation
  2. composing and playing and recording music (and finding out what I really want here)
  3. writing

Ad 2: I started the year with a recording session in a studio here with by buddy and we’ll have a few more next week. The idea is to have an EP out on iTunes this spring. And: (OMG) I registered for a course Songwriting via Berklee College of Music!! I’m so excited!!

Why these three things? Because I enjoy doing those, they all make me happy in a way. And also because they allow me to interact with people from around the world and potentially touch their hearts, be a bit of inspiration, comfort. You tell me 🙂

In order not to forget to focus on these three things and also in order not to revert to this old habit telling myself I can’t do this (and hence revert to petty daily stuff only), I was so lucky to come across this beautiful poem by John O’Donohue. May it serve as an inspirational reminder for you as well. Let us live the life we’re called to!!!

For a New Beginning

In out-of-the-way places of the heart,
Where your thoughts never think to wander,
This beginning has been quietly forming,
Waiting until you were ready to emerge.

For a long time it has watched your desire,
Feeling the emptiness growing inside you,
Noticing how you willed yourself on,
Still unable to leave what you had outgrown.

It watched you play with the seduction of safety
And the gray promises that sameness whispered,
Heard the waves of turmoil rise and relent,
Wondered would you always live like this.

Then the delight, when your courage kindled,
And out you stepped onto new ground,
Your eyes young again with energy and dream,
A path of plenitude opening before you.

Though your destination is not yet clear
You can trust the promise of this opening;
Unfurl yourself into the grace of beginning
That is at one with your life’s desire.

Awaken your spirit to adventure;
Hold nothing back, learn to find ease in risk;
Soon you will be home in a new rhythm,
For your soul senses the world that awaits you.

John O’Donohue

Here’s to a year that matters! To a life that matters!

Blessings, Courage and Love!

Geert

I wonder….

Good day!

So there’s another few states violently trying to beat down protests. And yet another few are so afraid of its own citizens and neighbors that they have started to collect as many expressions by them as possible in huge databases. In order to be able to throw a suspicion at each of us at the whim of some bureaucrat/s at whatever point in time

So I wonder where this fear comes from and why it is so persistent. Why do people like Erdogan (but it’s not just him) believe they can get away with oppressing the people in their countries? Why do they think they can stop a process which is inevitable and irrevocable since it finds its origin in a different source. What would it take for them to leave throw their petty political and personal agenda out of the window and make room for that which want to become manifest?

Why can’t those so-called leaders not see what wants to emerge? Is it that they identify so much with the role they have? Do they take themselves too seriously? And mind you: I’m pretty sure it is rather obscure for many of the protesters as well. But still they have the courage to respond to this new universal signal: no longer is it one for all. (And speaking of courage: what to think about this individual Edward Snowden?) We’re in this together. Leadership is a distributed function, and leadership roles will be inhabited by those who can  make the contribution which is required for as long at it is required.

The American people are on a diet of fear. And once more: they’re not the only ones. It may be the consequence of us living our lives under the illusion of separation in a hostile environment, as Charles Eisenstein illustrates so beautifully: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EEZkQv25uEs And inevitably that has gotten a solid political foundation as well. Why is it that no one seems to ask why the American people should be afraid? And of what exactly? And what it would take to get rid of the fear? And again: the USA is not the only country where this is going on. It’s omnipresent.

People like Alan Seale and Otto Scharmer talk about remembering the future that wants to emerge, which to me makes a lot of sense as figuring out where to next is no longer really possible. In his July 1994 speech in America, Vaclav Havel said:

“There are good reasons for suggesting that the modern age has ended. Many things indicate that we are going through a transitional period, when it seems that something is on the way out and something else is painfully being born. It is as if something were crumbling, decaying and exhausting itself, while something else, still indistinct, were arising from the rubble.”

The modern world as we have come to know and understand it, has ended. I know. Many of you know. When will enough people know and act responsibly in allowing the future that wants to emerge to actually do so.

Peace,

Geert Hofman

www.geerthofman.com

The Language of Mattering

Hi y’all out there!

Again I came across an interesting post by Umair Haque (I guess you might think by now I’m following him or something) , here it is: http://bitly.com/PIZdeh He makes a point of finding out the meaning of our life or better: of allowing meaning to find us. And to be open to Love. Big love not small love. It seems we have become deaf to the language of mattering, numb to the real meaningful things (which most of the time aren’t things anyway) blind to the meaning of our life, closed off from a life with meaning. And why? Is it the overload of stimuli telling us to care about having stuff, to see the world around us in terms of stuff and stuff only? It must be why most people I know are dissatisfied, whether they are regarded successful or not.  Constantly living in a state of profound exhaustion, perpetually fuelled by fear. Fear of being hurt, disappointed, turned down, fear for showing up as who we really are, imbued by the fear of not being good enough. Well, if it helps, let me tell you: you are good enough just the way you are. We all are.

It takes courage to see and more so to embrace what our life is about. Too often we get caught up in a complex structure of rules and supposed expectations we think we need to fulfill. letting go of that feels like giving something up, without us being able to see how it holds us back, how it limits our talents, how it prevents us from living wholeheartedly. Freedom is more than just an academic notion, being born in a discussion to which none of the participants are really present. It comes from disciplined action based on self-knowledge and with detachment from the results. So the invitation is to go out there and get dented, bruised scratched in allowing meaning to find you. And in that process to love and be loved. Love yourself for starters and see what comes from that, see how different the world becomes when you do so. Have conversations that matter, with anyone that matters. We think we’re alone but once we dare to step out from under our glass dome, we quickly find out we’re not. Initiate these conversations, go out and seek the experiences that are meaningful to you and not necessarily to others. Experiences that bring you closer to who you are and what it is that you, and only you, are here for. All are craving for contact, for sharing experiences, for having conversations that matter. For being open to the language of mattering. Allow those conversations to happen so you can help others on their way as they help you continue your journey.

Love and Blessings,

 

Geert

 

www.geerthofman.com

It’s (not necessarily) all about the money

Hello Again!

As you know by now, I find this discussion regarding money quite fascinating. As I’ve mentioned in my previous post, due to its nature you can’t ever get enough money. Unless you take a conscious decision that enough is enough, you’ll always want more money. And yeah, well, what can you do with more and more and more money? Buy stuff? Buy more expensive stuff? Buy political power? Why? To get tax breaks that result in you having even more money? So, now that our current way of interest bearing debt based and (money) growth driven economics is coming to an end a question becomes relevant:  what kind of prosperity would we get if we’d stop monetizing each and everything on the planet? What would it mean if we’d collectively step out of the money game and enter the human game?

In this video featuring Umair Haque addressing a conference  http://bit.ly/OmCcA7, he introduces the idea of eudaimonic prosperity. Well, using ancient Greek words always sounds impressive so I looked it up. In Wikipedia I found this:

Eudaimonia or eudaemonia (Ancient Greek: εὐδαιμονία [eu̯dai̯monía]), sometimes Anglicized as eudemonia (play /juːdɨˈmniə/), is a Greek word commonly translated as happiness or welfare; however, “human flourishing” has been proposed as a more accurate translation.[1] Etymologically, it consists of the words “eu” (“good”) and “daimōn” (“spirit”). It is a central concept in Aristotelian ethics and political philosophy, along with the terms “aretē“, most often translated as “virtue” or “excellence”, and “phronesis“, often translated as “practical or moral wisdom.”[2] In Aristotle’s works, eudaimonia was (based on older Greek tradition) used as the term for the highest human good, and so it is the aim of practical philosophy, including ethics and political philosophy, to consider (and also experience) what it really is, and how it can be achieved.

So it is about good spirit….. Several Greek philosophers have different interpretations of it, though. Roughly they vary from just having a good time (Epicurus) or being active in a life aimed at achieving excellence (arete) in virtue as Aristotle and Socrates suggest. I guess by now we’ve ticked the box of living a life of (superficial and empty-headed) pleasure which does not prove to be enough for sustainable happiness or fulfillment as the senses require constantly new stimuli in order to remain satisfied (sedated) or have at least the illusion that they are so.

Then this video by Charles Eisenstein came to mind. Here it is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EEZkQv25uEs From 09:26 onward he talks about Adulthood. We’re moving out of this childhood phase, where we played around with our talents without connecting those to our true purpose, and entering the phase of Adulthood where the gifts and talents we’ve developed will now be aimed at our purpose. The first step then being healing, a massive amount of it, to heal what we’ve made sick. And that requires that we act, apart from having a changed set of attitudes, a radically changed view of ourselves, of the universe and hence how we relate to that. We need to act collectively, based on our radically changed view of the universe, naturally allowing each of us the freedom that is indissociably ours. Sitting around and thinking about the healing is not enough. And: the acting is not a tick-the-box exercise either. It is a change process by itself through which we will learn to see the beauty of life again, and to honour our habitat at large, including everything that lives in it.

Being active and not just sitting around is also something I find on the cover of my pocket Bhagavad Gita:

“Freedom lies not in renunciation or retreat, but in disciplined action performed with self-knowledge and detachment”

As I’ve also mentioned in my novel The Glass Dome (www.geerthofman.com-glass-dome) one of the conditions that seemingly need to be met is the dissolving of current rigid structures in all fields of our society. And that I expect that not to go peaceful most of the time. Hence interesting times ahead but I’m getting more confident that we’ll be able to make the jump thanks to our collective wisdom, once that gets properly mobilised.  With contribution from people like Umair Haque and Charles Eisenstein, but also John Renesch (https://www.facebook.com/TheGreatGrowingUp) and many more, not all hope is lost!

Any thoughts? I’d like us to explore our road ahead.

Love and Blessings,

Geert

http://www.geerthofman.com

Money and the illusion of separation

Drowning in never enough money

Bonjour!

I talked about Charles Eisenstein and his book Sacred Economics in my previous blog (www.sacred-economics.com). Now, I’d like to address another phenomenon enhanced by money: separation. It starts with a view that everything in the universe which you don’t recognise as ‘you’ is separate and hence alien. At best you and it are indifferent about each other but chances are that you, as a human being, see it as something to be afraid of, something hostile. And that asks for control. But how can we control nature? We do impact it but can we control it? When you don’t feel part of the universe, part of nature, you may see it as things, or ‘a bunch of stuff’ as Charles Eisenstein labels it in this video (http://youtu.be/EEZkQv25uEs). It becomes a bunch of stuff you can get hold of, process it and then sell it back to the people to whom it belonged in the first place, leaving you with more money than before. And with that money you can buy stuff. I find it interesting that renting out storage space has become a market of its own, at least in the US and in several European countries. We buy so much stuff that we can no longer store it in our homes. I like to believe that most products we buy, are not bought because of their functional qualities but as a kind of sedation. An attempt to lift the loneliness and void our money driven lives have given us. Who was it that said: ‘the best things in life most of the time are not things?’. How can a bag cost several thousands of dollars or euros? And hold the stuff it’s supposed to hold indescribably better than a, let’s say two hundred dollar bag would? Of course I’m aware of the underlying psychological patterns of the buyers. But really: a 10cm square cm strip of leather with a Luis Vuitton ring to it should cost over a hundred euro’s? I’m wondering if anybody has researched the sustainability of the psychological well-being of a person as the result of owning exorbitantly expensive luxury goods, that can be produced at only a fraction more of what it costs to produce commodities. And commodities are what most of the things  are that we use in the first place. Or is there anyone out there believing he’s the only one with an iPhone? Of course I’m not saying we should move to a state controlled plan-economy where everything we can buy is of poor quality, not sufficient in quantity and as standard as it gets. The point is that I believe (and agree with Charles Eisenstein) that we have come to the point that we’re reaching the end of economic growth as we have been taught to have it. And hence a different, arguably far more limited role of money is required. I predict that the focus on human needs will grow. To experience meaningfulness, significance and hence get out of the money game. How much more stuff do we need to have in order to feel happy? Fulfilled? Satiated? What is finally enough? Of course the emerging economies around the world provide the last profitable stretches in this dead-end street. Indeed this was mentioned in my first novel (www.geerthofman.com/glass-dome)  I lost track of how much coca cola the average chinese is drinking, how much Cartier and Rolex watches they own  and how much Mercedes, Porsches, Beamers and Ferrari’s have been sold more to China than last year? More expensive stuff won’t fill the void. More expensive stuff doesn’t feel the rather basic human needs of wanting to feel fulfilled by deploying our talents where they’re needed and where they make sense. Naturally, without being forced to serve whose ever bottom line.

It is time we start seeing and experiencing the connection again. It is time we leave the money game behind us and enter the human game, which is played on a global scale with fairness and access to the planet’s richness for all. Charles Eisenstein refers to this as the coming of age ordeal. Now it’s time to individually and collectively reconnect to our purpose and direct the deployment of our unique talents exactly in that direction.

All love and blessings,

Geert

www.geerthofman.com

Preface ‘The Glass Dome’

 

Hey there!

Following some reactions on my previous blog, I thought it would good to publish the preface to my first novel (www.geerthofman.com/glass-dome). So….here it is! Again: this is not about me knowing what is going on and what exactly is awaiting us. I’d like us to engage in a meaningful conversation as to what wants to manifest throught these horrible events like the Aurora shooting etc. and regarding what all of us could do to prevent that suffering from happening.

Preface

 

These are interesting times. As I’m writing this [August 2011], we’ve witnessed the Arab spring, which has far from settled down, the earthquake in Japan with its devastating effects, countries on the brink of bankruptcy, Europe struggling to prevent the Eurozone from collapsing, there was the Oslo carnage and just recently the riots in various UK cities. Something of a rather large order seems to be going on, inviting us to take a step back, take a different look at who we are and to make different ways of living, of treating ourselves, each other and the planet possible. Nothing remains the same and what is going on could very well only be the beginning of even bigger changes.

 

As change is becoming more radical and occurring yet faster it is impacting all around the planet. With traditional sources for providing guidance losing their authority and therewith their relevance we’re left to ourselves to try to make sense of what is going on and of what apparently wants to happen. In order to find a justification for these changes, and to try to make sense of them, most will refer to sources from within the current reality, whether it’s science, religion, whatever. I’m pretty sure that trying to find satisfactory explanations within the current paradigm is going to be a challenge. Let alone that adequate solutions for the current challenges, these ongoing changes impose on us, can be found. You cannot steer a ship by looking at its wake. Whatever the source, it seems clear to a growing number of people that something is profoundly changing on the planet. I’m one of them.

 

These upcoming changes will have an effect on how we look upon ourselves, our relationships, our work, our societies, our planet, in short: upon how we have shaped our world. We will be sailing uncharted waters and whatever we have developed as practices over the past millennia will only be of limited help in setting out our next course. Individually and collectively we need to be able to connect to and mobilise other sources in order to successfully continue on our journey of development.

 

The story in this book has been written for all of you out there who sense there is something more to their lives than that you have been taught (and have learned) to believe ever since you were kids. Somehow this longing for this unknown is getting stronger in many people. You may see yourself faced with the question whether or not to heed this call and bring forward changes in your life that may lead to a radical change in the way you have been living up until now. Whether or not you decide to engage in this transformation is solely up to you. And the story has no intention whatsoever to persuade you in doing so. But since this calling gets stronger for many, so does the anxiety. Both individually and collectively. Why venture a giant leap into something completely unknown at the risk of leaving behind everything you attached so much value to? Or at least had gotten used to? Why leave behind a seemingly fulfilling life, which you have gained by learning how to play the game, through adapting to the context, often at the expense of yourself ? Why can the heart be so sure about what direction to take and why does the mind so persistently convince you not to do such a foolish thing? What are actually the stories you are telling yourself about yourself, about your relationships, about your career, about success, about your life, about leadership, about politics, about the world in general and how things go? And how well are they serving you?

 

The main intention of this story is to make you feel more comfortable with whatever really wants to manifest through you, with which you know deep inside you are connected. But from which you somehow shield yourself off. That’s why I’ve chosen to illustrate the journey of one individual. Again, it may be helpful to know that you are not the only one having those feelings. There’s an increasing number of people around the planet having similar feelings and looking for ways to deal with them knowing that no single person holds all the answers. So, I wish you happy reading with an open mind and, more importantly, with an open heart.

 

All Love and Blessings,

 

Geert

 

www.geerthofman.com