Tag Archives: ahimsa

“Hurt people hurt people, Healed people heal people”

I remember my friend Samara saying this line in a workshop in Findhorn at the New Story Summit. She is working with black communities in US and has a group called Truthworker. They are using arts to resist domination paradigms and create transformations in our world.

This line came alive for me last year when I was working with the NVC Convention prep team in India. There were moments when there were things which were important for me when we were taking some decisions about the convention. When there was some disagreement, I imagined or feared that I will not be heard. I have had such feelings in the past when I have worked with some other groups too. I kind of relived that experience of the same fear i might have experienced in school or in my family which made the situation more intense. There was the issue and the story that I was telling about the issue and the major space was taken by the fear or imagining that I will not be heard.


Unconsciously my fear turned into anger and my expression was seen as lashing out by some people in the team. It makes full sense why they would felt that I was ‘lashing out’, as my response had a strong energy. However I realised that even though I spoke with anger but there were people in the group to hold me in those times, they tried to listen to my concerns which helped them become visible to others. Once I realised that my voice was being heard and I mattered, it made me slow down and even created spaciousness in me which allowed me to listen to others too and to try to understand their world too. Its nice to have some people to hold space in a group in a time of conflict who can hear different expressions without getting triggered. This role can be played by different people at different times.

As group, we all did a lot of hard work and came to understanding what was important for all of us. I have not seen such strong disconnects transform into some kind of common understandings so fast and with such little pain.

In the process I see that some of my stories that I was carrying from my past dropped as we engaged together in a compassionate ways. The one was the fear that I will not be heard, or I dont matter.


I am glad we had conversations about decision making and what is our policy on making decisions in the time of crisis. We were very transparent in our decision making. Besides we were also acting out of NVC space where we were trying to see where the other person comes from. We also used Sociocratic process in proposal forming and getting consent on them and not to move with a  decision till every one is heard. We made the space for hearing objections and the reason’s behind them, once the reasons were heard they were incorporated to change the proposals to make the proposals acceptable to all. The final proposal at times was not the perfect solution from everyone’s perspectives but it was some thing that we all could live by for a certain time frame.

As a result of this one year of working with the NVC convention I sense that I am beginning to heal myself of some of my stories and as a result feeling lighter inside. I would definitely want to be more aware of it and would want self connection next time some thing similar happens. Try to see what is it that I really want, look at if its really in danger or my story is playing some game with me, look around and see that this situation is different from my past situation which created pain. As Marshall says to see every incident as a new born child. If I see a story also try to see the beautiful need behind it and enjoy that need.

Thats one of the story  I was carrying with me, I wish to understand some other stories that I am carrying on my shoulders. 

That will be possible if I can see the world of the people whose actions had caused me hurt in the past, I know thats also hard work but thats where I also believe where the light is.


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Filed under Community Building, Mediation, Nonviolent Communication(NVC), Sociocracy, Sustainable Living

Celebrating Conscious Eating – with Shammi in Totnes, UK.

Cook (and share!) a healthy Indian meal and learn how to make food choices compassionately, in ways inspired by Non-violent Communication (NVC)


Shammi is an Indian film maker, change agent, organic grower, food aficionado and teacher of NVC. He will show us how to cook a simple and low-budget but delicious Indian meal with healthy ingredients: local and seasonal veggies, no animal product, etc.

You can join either at 5 pm to participate in the prepping and cooking or at 6.30 pm for the last stages of cooking. We will start eating at about 7 pm. Please book – see below!
Shammi has experience in running organic community kitchens and is interested in the links between our emotional states and our food choices. He will guide us into a conversation on making food choices in a compassionate way – away from right-and-wrong or guilt-and-shame paradigms and towards a need-based approach that is gentle and caring to ourselves and those around us.

This playshop is offered in the spirit of the gift culture. Contributions welcome to cover the costs and to support Shammi in bringing his gifts to our communities.
YOU MUST BOOK with Annie on a.l@zen.co.uk, 01803 762992 or 07929 962653.

Further info: Shammi’s public Facebook page (‘Kathadesh – a Land of Stories’) on http://goo.gl/1VaGMn; his blog onwww.courageouscommunication.wordpress.com as well ashttp://goo.gl/ZI6GOQ and http://goo.gl/tR4USH; a community space he co-created in Chandigarh: www.parshada.tumblr.com

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Filed under Conscious Kitchen, Nonviolent Communication(NVC)

Hosting Public Dialogues in the times of Conflict

Had hosted a public dialogue on the division of Telangana and Andhra and the energy it is created in the region. We did it in July this year at Our Sacred Space, Hyderabad.
We need to create systems where we can look at inter community conflicts, where we can listen to the hurt, anger, pain, fears and different needs of the communities in conflict. We need many such containers in the country…which have to even listen to the pain that we are carrying from the past due to inter community conflicts…some times we might just need a safe space to grieve as a community.

hans telangana andhra-pagefinal 2

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Filed under Community Building, Conflict Transformation, Nonviolent Communication(NVC)