Over the last few months I’ve been working on an experiment: at a time when the national discourse in America seems polarized, how can we bring together people from across the political spectrum and spark deeper dialogue?
My main tool for sparking deeper dialogue has been storytelling, i.e. using the process of story coaching to surface values, and story telling to help others, with different perspectives, to see and hold them.
In August I held my first event, featuring five activists from Boston-Area Tea Party groups who volunteered to step up and share stories focused not on their politics, but rather their values and the life experiences that helped shape them. This Thursday we’re holding our second event and will be bringing together, on one stage, supporters of Occupy Boston, the Tea Party, and the GOP.
At this stage our events are less of a fixed process and more of an experimental laboratory of dialogue and story. I’m still in the process of understanding what it is that we’re creating, and what value it creates and for whom. And I’m hopeful that this will be a good learning opportunity for me and those involved, and if we’re lucky contribute to the intention of bringing together communities at a time when they seem to be divided.
For info on Thursday’s event, check out our Facebook event page. For updates / future announcements / blog posts specifically related to this initiative (The Mantle Project), please sign up for the mailing list at http://eepurl.com/p3VAj. Thanks.