Sunday, August 31, 2003

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool. To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self.

I am running a course over the next few months and thought I would share the sort of thing it is.................. this is an out take of the text.......

The Road Less Travelled
A three evening course on Personal Management

including Awareness Training, Assertiveness Training, Communication and Group Work Skills led by Pip Wilson, author and Group Worker.

The objectiveis to spend three evenings together actively exploring communication. No experience necessary– only a willingness to participate at a level decided by yourself and the group. It will be interactive – meaning non-threatening discussion led and guided to provide a whole new experience of communication – body mind and spirit. It will be enjoyable and life affirming.

The Group Leader is Pip Wilson who has had thirty years experience of leading teams and groups of all ages. He is author of 4 books, which include many exercises for groups – now used world-wide. He will lead the group into enjoyable, stimulating, stretching experiences which are not easy to describe on paper. The new skills and awareness will equip each person, differently, to enable them to realise their own potential and help to realise that in others.

Join us on the journey.
The Road Less Travelled.

A THOUGHT ........
To laugh is to risk appearing the fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach out is to risk involvement.
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self.
To place your ideas and dreams before the crowd is to risk their love.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying.
To hope is to risk despair.
To try is to risk despair.
To try is to risk failure.

But the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.
The one who risks nothing does nothing and has nothing - and finally is nothing.
He may avoid suffering and sorrow.
But he simply cannot learn, feel, change, grow or love.
Chained by certitude, he is a slave and has forfeited freedom.

Only one who risk is free!

A STORY...............
As the old man walked along the beach at dawn, he noticed a young woman ahead of him picking up starfish and flinging them into the sea. Finally catching up with the young woman, he asked her why she was doing this. The answer was that the stranded starfish would die if left until the morning. “But the beach goes on for miles and there are millions of starfish”, countered the other. “How can your effort make any difference?” The young woman looked at the starfish in her hand and then threw it to safety in the waves. “It makes a difference to this one”, she said.

Listening skills, communications skills, spiritual awareness, assertiveness training, observation skills, self-awareness, affirmation, managing feelings and giving and receiving from a special group of people – AND GOOD FUN.

I get some emails which are full of feelings and I am cut deep.
Love it love it
When people open it touches me and I live in wonder
It all helps me to reflect.............

Today I spent an hour in an old Church
Last Sunday four days at a racecourse

Today I went to Church with about 200
Last Sunday with about 15000

Today I took communion on my knees
Last week sat in a circle on a concrete racecourse grandstand

Today I sipped wine from a silver cup
Last week from a plasic one

Today I had a round wafer of bread
Last Sunday a slice of Tesco white bread touched by 20 or so hands before mine

Today I wondered why I was there
Last week I knew why I was alive

Today my mind flew away in all directions
Last week my my soul was offered as a gift again, in one direction

Today I was in Church
Last week-end I was at Greenbelt

Both real
Both my choice
Both part of me and the journey I chose when I was around 21

So I will go on and reflect because I have decided make my life an act of love and work it out in large and small places

I love the concrete.........

Saturday, August 30, 2003

this young man in a ymca hostel.
18 this day

When he was :-
17 he lived above a pub
16 in a hostel in Liverpool
15 in a different hostel in Liverpool
14 in a Children's home
13 he lived with his Mother

Happy Birthday

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

reflections from the bed of room 312.......

GREENBELT is over for another and the thirtieth year. The old year has gone and a new one appears. I hate the ending of Greenbelt and the anticipation of the next is too soon ....... I must reflect........

Leaving GB early is nothing to Bragg about. I missed Billy an caught some of Polyphonic Spree. Hmmmmm I leave that as the reflection on them.
I left to get back to work.
To people work.
To community work.
To group work and I live it, love it.
I was somewhat dead headed in the morning and sleep came upon me as I travelled on all three trains over the ungreen London town. Hmmmmm ...... Polyphonic Spree again!

Soon I was alerted to live again by people and enjoyed the rapport again with the people I love.
And then we come to Donut. To donuts and discussion which is and was fab. Love it love it.

A privilege to be amongst people who talk from the heart, gut, emotions and life experience ALL at the same time.
As usual there is people sharing from a deep experience of damage.
Not the detail but the learning experiences.
Not arguments but live reflections, all coming out fresh.
Just made.
Just worked at that very minute.
Just dug out deep from their souls.

"I don't feel beautiful" is said in words and cried in tears over dinner in public view. Said in facial expression when reflecting on the life lived, the scars on the soul and the regrets.

And we talked about this in the group. That theory about experiences in life, is not only recorded as a video in the mind for ever, (better replay than Blockbuster), but also that these recordings carry the same feelings forever.
Recordings of feelings. Good and bad!
So we discussed this.
The feelings lingering on from 'early years' damage.
So we own these feelings
This is part of the managing them.
Owning and knowing.
And then kicking the darkness until it bleeds daylight.
The wondrous thing is the mutual learning.

I try to set the climate.
Stick on track.
One only talking at one time.
More difficult, all listening.
Eyes are seen to wonder away to the side as minds dive for cover on mention of a trigger word, or on mention of a live and kicking emotion.

Press the button.
Click the keys.
Refresh emotion.
Refresh hurt.
The group and the individual can handle that.
And it is coming out.
The boxes of ugliness are being unwrapped and therefore not the bogey man of our childhood.

The wholeness we seek is here.
It is here and will be here.
It is here and will take a lifetime to seek.

.......and because of Greenbelt I was saved and brought, with my damage, to a Greenbelt community to work that through....... as such is the Kingdom of God.
No messing.
I didn't become a breakdown case.
I didn't become another disillusioned Christian because Greenbelt give me no illusions.

"Some like to live within the sound of Chapel bell
I want to live within a yard of hell."

I don't really.
Not my quote.
But I like it because it is right to live on the edge.
Be incomplete.
Be stretched.
Be uncomfortable and outside those zones of ease.

So tomorrow we will walk on from today .....walk on from Greenbelt and the days growth, into another.

I love Greenbelt and the getting the grit between my toes..........
BIG JOHN...................
........ he introduced himself to me at the bar and then came and joined the big circle of old friends and new.

He told me about his 20 Greenbelt and his zilch church.
Greenbelt was his Church.
He told us about his new baby Grace.
His eyes leaked as he told us his experience of showing Grace the 'Grace' things at Greenbelt.
And Julie his wife bringing him to this place and showing him the kingdom of Greenbelt and his soulhome.
Another life on track and kicking new sand into dark places.

A new friend and a life long Greenbelter.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

At Greenbelt...............
Help us remember that the idiot who cut us up in traffic is a single mother who worked nine hours that day and is rushing to Greenbelt to cook a meal and settle the kids down so they can have a good first day at the festival and
spend a few precious moments with her friends who have saved hard to get to Greenbelt.

Help us to remember that the pierced, tattooed, disinterested young man who can't handle his change correctly is a worried YMCA Hostel resident who is behind in his rent and cannot afford the cheapest hotdog on site. At the same time balancing his apprehension over with his fear of not getting
on well with the group he came with.

Remind us, Lord, that the scary looking young woman, rolling her eyes and cannot stop moving her body, is a recovering slave to addictions that we can only imagine in our worst nightmares.

Remind us that the scars of the self harming woman, scarred for life, is just like me with my scars that hinder and equip at the same time. And remember that we, maybe, can just hide ours better.

Help us to remember that the old couple walking annoyingly slow through the festival site and blocking our progress are savoring this moment, knowing that, based on the biopsy report she got back last week, this will
be the last year that they will be at Greenbelt together.

Creator God, remind us each day that, of all the gifts you give us, the
greatest gift is love. That it is not enough to share that love with those we
hold dear. But those who, on first impressions, make us shudder, or sigh or grunt with irritability.

Open our soul and press your finger tip right on that part, the part to raise your love to the surface. So it touches the practical. The proactive. The love department.
Make our Greenbelt an act of love.

From: pipwilson
Date: Wed Aug 20, 2003 12:01:57 AM Europe/London
To: pip Wilson
Subject: blog 1

It is great to work with people who have had tough lives and have learned so much. There is hurt there. There is experience there. The face shows it as the words struggle out in the context of a group. This is what I do now. It is pulling people together and building a climate of trust and........ letting the group open up on an issue which they are stretched with. Not comfortable, but something which stretches their mind and the very depth of their soul.

When you have been hurt it is difficult to trust again. More-so to love again. My push is to stretch to love. The theory is that if we separate from people, not liking one or another or slagging off others, that destroys the 'community' (the principle methodology of growth and development) and also hinders the growth of the person themselves. To write someone off is to damage me too. It is old fashioned 'love your enemies' because.... anyone can love their friends. It is wonderful to hear affirmation flying over the group. One corner to another. "I used to think you were an idiot, a loud mouth idiot with no care and sensibility to yourself or anyone else. Now I have got to know you, you are a really good guy. "
Love it, love it, love it.
That very issue of getting to level 5 communication makes my heart sing and I believe God rejoices in heaven 'because such is the kingdom of heaven'.
There are people in the group who really add some great stuff and sometimes sit back and think .......... something of God is being made here.
"Shalom' ........ right relationships
right community
right sensitivity
right openness
right direction toward the kingdom coming in rich and broken lives.

What I really admire is the staff who enter into the group life and really share their own vulnerability, brokenness, hurts, faltering ...... it is so beautiful that the staff do not have to pretend to be 'beautiful perfection' but like us all in the group ...... 'beautiful imperfection'.

Several of the people I work with will be going to Greenbelt and they will not automatically fit in. They will feel different. They will feel that everyone seems to know how to enjoy the festival and they don't. Then the famous Greenbelt vibe will touch deep in their souls. They will feel that atmosphere that is, in my experience, the nearest we will get to heaven ........ on earth.
If you see them.
say hello
love with your eyes
love with your smile

of such is the Greenbelt kingdom of heaven


Monday, August 18, 2003

It is great to read the life led by the other bloggers on our Greenbelt journey.
We are all doing our stuff but all heading for a special Greenbelt experience which will also be unique.
Will we meet us bloggers?
Will we bump into each other?
John Davies who I know and love, I didn't even speak to him last year ........ hardly the chance.
I don't like to think of after Greenbelt yet but, join the Greenbelt forum because the best time of the year is all the reflections and experiences of Greenbelt all comin' at ya with emails.
Love it love it.

Today is getting ready and the day has gone now.
I am on the slippery slope to Greenbelt and I am happy.

hey hey

Sunday, August 17, 2003

Daughter day has been so long, too long since we saw our Sheilas. The have been working abroad and I suppose so have I. To get them both around is great and love it love it. Champagne.
We just hang out together so fine and catch up by talking about everything and nothing and watching MTV. Champagne.
I feel good with them. I feel happy. I feel beautiful. They tell me like it is of course. The advice flows free ......... from them to me! The let it flow to Mother too ...... and paint the toenails. Champagne.

Unpacking the vids and cd's from Prague was on the cards too. Then the repack for ~Greenbelt. Which vids to take to show? What else will I need for the 'grit' workshop. These are the only days to prep before venturing to Greenbelt on Thursday.

The 5 day weather looks good but I can only see ahead to Thursday.

It is late now. I have put Zig the cat to bed. The Champagne glasses remain unwashed. The three are all to bed. Me too. zzzzzzzzzzzzz

The thirty book about the life of Greenbelt is SO stinking fab.

see you there eh?

"work like you don't need the money
dance like no-one is watching
sing like no-one is listening
love like you have never been hurt"

Friday, August 15, 2003

I have really been off the blog planet of late.
Now I am back from Prague and weeks of preparation I slide wondrously into Greenbelt which is my soul-home. Love it love it.

Greenbelt has such a good published programme and yet I am always shocked and delighted by the new things, the passionate things - all coming from pulling 15000 members of Gods creation together to party!

I have returned from the Prague experience with all sorts of buzz. I will turn it into sense for my soul and I guess you will read some of it. It is incredible on the back of all that, going into my mission as a group worker and leading groups to knife their own soul in search of honesty. Setting a scene in a climate of trust where people can share and be honest with such things as 'feelings'. Also taking that risk to be open about the scars from the past which linger on. It is a MASSIVE learning for me and I am sure for them as we search out the meaning of life. Often from a life of failure which includes drugs, prison, family conflict, drink, low self esteem and more.

I love the adventure of self discovery and group learning. A group talking and listening. I feel so close as we share. Thanx for and to you if we have shared over the years. You have helped to mold me. God has helped to mold me through you. Thank you for showing me what God is like through your personality and character which is made in Gods image.

love it

Thursday, August 14, 2003

Hot Dog Vendor: "What do you want?"
The Dalai Lama: "Make me one with everything."

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Beautiful Imperfection.
I had my arm around Charlie on the main stage in Prague. She was opening up herself. She was willing to talk honestly about her compulsive behaviors past and present.

Charlie has over 500 cuts to her body. The hot weather and the need to clothe lightly revealed the self harm to the ymca festival goers. "......and people just stared" she said. "The worst time was when I went into McDonalds just near the festival site and the people in the four long queues just turned and turned their heads, time and time again."
"I felt stripped"

She shared with me before she was interviewed on main stage that no-one had spoken to her. Just stared. During the interview she made it clear she is always willing to talk with people. In fact just before she came on our stage 'one' person from my crew, a young German man called Monty, had been the only person to be open and proactive in conversation. She felt alone at the festival. Among 7500 people.

Little baby nothing ----------------------
is the tattoo across her chest for all to see. Charlie is a remarkable woman of 22 who suffered a massive dose of self harming compulsive behavior between the ages of 15 and 17. Still fighting the anorexia type illness, she carries the scars of her past that others of us, with different scars, can hide.

She survived Prague and enjoyed some. She coped with being alone, the eating hurdles, not depressed, handled the insensitivity of others (including mine) and still able to articulate the experience and then say to me........... "It was a learning experience!"

We have sat and talked. Opened and dug into the feelings (she is so stinking good at 'feelings') She knows there is a journey ahead into wholeness and she is up for it.

She is a remarkable woman who is fighting something unique. She and me want to let everyone know the reality of all this. This learning experience needs to be that for everyone. The minority people 'alone' as well as the big groups of active singing and dancing and the crowds.

"BEAUTIFUL IMPERFECTION" was a workshop which was cancelled in Prague. She had planned to go. For me she she walks tall alongside these words.

pip wilson bhp
charlie bhp

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

God put a smile upon your face
he gives you style
he gives you grace

lead singer of COLDPLAY
and son of a Minister

loveit loveit

Contrast to Prague ........ spent the evening with bhp's who are articulate, full of feelings, lots of thoughts and wisdom to share and have had years of taking heroin. And more.

Loveit loveit loveit.

It is a great part of me to do this, be there, breathing with their heart beats. I belong here. God wants.....................

Got so much more to share and will do as things happen and feelings penetrate my soul. Letting that opening happen is vital ...........God gets in the cracks ......... we all have cracks, that's how the light gets in ........ and God puts his finger tip, finger print on our souls.

Greenbelt looms in 8 days for me and I can do no better than recommend the 'thirty' book available on line.

It is about a life
a life of thirty years
a life of hope and pain and beautiful imperfection
about Greenbelt
buy it and be inspired ................... or you will get it free with the festival programme on site.

more soon
It is me trying to put my head back on after Prague and prepare for Greenbelt in 9 days time whilst all the time I have work to do and people to love and........

Yes went to a Greenbelt Board meeting last night, last meeting pre fest. The book called thirty is out. About the 30 yrs of our festival and I have been to the last 26. It is fab and you can order on line

see you at Greenbelt

Monday, August 11, 2003

well ..... no blogs for a while as promised .......... warned. Now I am in the garden of Hotel Splendid in Prague, still off line, and returning to my G4 mactop which I have missed so much. Katarina has had it on loan to create digital movies for the shows ......... so it has bee out on loan and cannot believe I did that!

The feelings after this event are big. Good feeling much ....... also inadequate feelings and regret feelings ......and glowing feelings, mainly the latter from relationships and relating with new people.

Will be back on Blog soon ..... as soon as I can post this and above one to online when I get home ......... then you can relate to the correct date of posting again ........ you are beautiful


Sunday, August 10, 2003

Day of travel and hang around waiting for the crew to arrive to drive the easybitch plane. Who am I to grumble when people have been killed in acar accident, or disfigured for life. I am only inconvenienced.

The day at it's best in a secret cafe where a main course is £3 and total full meal for two is £12 with drinks an all!
Jason was the company. That made it worth the while. Wonder.
We had good chats. He also asked me about my work which triggered a flood of reflections. Good for me. Good for him?

So good to relax and get fit for the wonder -- full experience of a life changing experience.

It is dripping here. Storms the morrow.

I put the letters on the back my hand .........why not a wee bit of ozzie osborne?