A busy first day in the Twin Cities. We met today with friends and partners in the InCommons network, an initiative supported by the Bush Foundation. InCommons is the primary sponsor of much of the flourishing of the Art of Hosting here in the Minnesota and Dakotas region. In a very short time, we estimate that there will be upwards of 1000 people in this state alone who have come through an Art of Hosting training, in cohorts and individually, as a result of InCommons’ intention to support new forms of leadership. This week we will turn our attention to hosting another 100 people in a three day Art of Hosting.
But today we spent time talking about worldviews and what the Art of Hosting is and how those of us who are practitioners see the world. As part of my own preparation for this conversation, I tried to whittle down the elevator speech about what it is, and one version of it now goes like this:
The most pressing challenges we are in are challenges thrown at us by complexity. Complexity produce emergent effects in our societies and requires emergent practices in order for us to find our way forward. The Art of Hosting supports wholeness by bringing together a loose set of tools, maps, models and practices that serve wholeness. We use dialogue to work with diversity to create emergent solutions, to hold groups and communities in the uncertainty and fear of not knowing, and to converge, prototype and design wise action. When we are telling the story about why this work matters, these touchstones seem to be essential to touch upon. From there we can go deeper into the worldview that embraces complexity (thank you Cynefin and the chaordic models of Dee Hock) or into the practices that support individual and collective leadership and resilience in times of change, uncertainty and fear.