Internet notebook about my work: deep listening to facilitate positive change


Tuesday 4 December 2007

A learning experience in sustainability

The Tiblisi+30 conference on environmental education was not so much a conference in the traditional sense of the word but more a learning experience in sustainability. The campus of the Ahmedabad based Center for Environmental Education (CEE) offered a perfect space to experience sustainability.The plenary hall, lunch court and exhibition area were all in tents in the open air. The spacious gardens took the place of the ‘corridors’ for networking. The variety of trees, flowers and music during the breaks generated an open atmosphere, impossible to compete with by the usual congress center. Lunch and dinner offered an opportunity to taste the varieties of the local vegetarian cuisine.

An art exhibition showed what traditional crafts can contribute to communicate sustainable development. A concert, a dance performance and an evening with traditional Gujarati folk dance communicated peace, equity, ancient values and innovation. The ambiance offered participants an opportunity for deep listening and sharing. Subtle positive energy radiated from the hand movements of the dancers of Mallika Sarabhai's group Darpana. It came right into the hearts of participants. Inspiration to start ‘living the change we want to see in the world’. It all influenced our mental frames to share and learn. This is how an ESD or environmental conference should be organized.

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