First Council Meeting of Council of European Grandmothers
Brief Report on the Weekend
held at the Yoga Shiatsu Zentrum in Merano Italy
on 25th, 26th and 27th September 2015
In attendance were Grandmother Agnes Baker-Pilgrim, Chairperson, Council of 13 Indigenous Grandmothers, and her daughter, Grandmother Nadine. There were also a number of ‘companions’ along with a team of very helpful Translators, Facilitators, and Catering Staff. The weekend began on Friday, 25th September 2015 with an Informal Gathering. A short welcome speech by Swami Nityamuktananda and a Blessing from Grandmother Agnes Pilgrim, the Guest of Honour from the Council of 13 Indigenous Grandmothers, was followed by a scrumptious Vegetarian Buffet Dinner.
Saturday, 26th September 2015
Day 1 began with a Time of Stillness, Turning Inwards and Meditation. An Opening Ceremony centred around the Lighting of a Lamp, representing the Fire of Knowledge was followed by a Talk on the Feminine Principle by Swami Nitya, which was well received and provided lots of ‘Food for thought’ for what was to follow.
A lot of planning had gone into the event and an excellent team of facilitators led Group Sessions with the dual aim of helping people to get to know each other and work on fundamental questions relating to the Hopes and Expectations of all present. The focus was on Points of Special Interest to be incorporated in the future of the Council. After lunch, a Plenary session presented the results from each of the groups with the intention of establishing foundations to become the base for the council. A second Group session discussed a possible Vision for the Future of the Council of European Grandmothers recognising that Creating a New Way Forward involves transforming the past as against forgetting it. Before going to dinner Sabina Cesaroni and Giusy Merli treated us to an excellent display of Goddess Dancing – demonstrating the Female Wisdom flowing from one generation to the next. The day ended with another period of Stillness, Turning Inwards and Meditation.
Sunday, 27th September 2015
Day 2 began with a Time of Stillness, Turning Inwards and Meditation. This was followed by 3 short talks intended to stimulate Impulses for possible projects.
Sofia Foteina spoke on Relating to the Next Generation Grandmother Agnes spoke on Relating to the Environment as it is our own body Swami Nityamuktananda spoke about Relational Reality.
We then had a Plenary Session about the Future of the Council to determine should it continue after this first gathering and if Yes, How this could happen.
After lunch, there were more Group Sessions on Projects and Activities which could get an added value through the Council. This led to another Plenary Session with Presentation of the Ideas from the groups for general discussion.
A brief Closing Ceremony involved the Displaying of Aspirations from each of the Grandmothers. Rather than attempt to include all the discussions, the reports from the various group sessions are attached as an addendum, as follows:
What do we want to Achieve? / How Do we Do This? / How Can We Work? / For Whom Do We Work? / What Can We Do? / How Can We Co-operate? / What Do We Need? / Who Do We Want to Reach? / What Possibilities Do We
WHAT DO WE WANT TO ACHIEVE
Vision: Respect and treat equally all living beings. A happier, healthier, peaceful and grateful humanity.
Work local and see global
- Green perspective
- Sharing/teaching: good will. Network connected to other networks
- Sharing stories
- Strengthen the circle/make the circle visible: communication campaign, film, spot (inspirational)
- Build local circles to support the GMs
- Collection of key messages
WHY DO WE DO THIS?
- It needs to be done, it speaks to me, I should do something
- We feel ready for responsibilities
- Simplicity and harmony, trust in intuition and ability to create a more harmonious space for ourselves and others
- Love, warmth and generosity
- The way of the heart, through the friendship/teaching of the life process
- Having confidence in the inner voice and be with the people you should at that time
- Trust the present moment with respect to the ?
- For life. To make a difference.
- The female energy should do it (for men and women) to rebalance
HOW CAN WE WORK?
- To challenge people to think in a new way
- Teachings from the heart, but arguments from science
- We teach people to rest so they can go beyond brain and habits.
- Groups should not be closed, yet stable
- We need to be inspired
- We have to promote tolerance (in ourselves and others) (all kind of tolerance).
FOR WHOM DO WE WORK
- For the next generations
- To create culture that includes caring
- To be aware of what influences us
- For Mother Earth (nature)
- For the children of the Earth
- For empowering the balance of feminine/masculine principle
WHAT CAN WE DO ?
- To think first about our actions. i.e. what I am buying, eating ,creating, education
- To change our actions
- To share it with others
START WITH YOURSELF
- Be an example
- Ask fundamental questions, wherever we are and who ever we meet
- Raising awareness
- Introduce mindfulness: meditation
- Meet people with your heart and learn to deeply listen
HOW CAN WE COOPERATE
- We need to know/understand what the other want to do, need
- We need to know each other and build trust
- List of what I can offer to other Grandmothers and what do I need
- Listen to Grandmothers step by step.
- Support list of skill sets and experiences to support each other
WHAT DO WE NEED
- Truth and trust/compassion
- Enthusiasm and Love
- Listen to our own intuition
- Total integrity
- Self confidence
- Self Esteem
- Willingness to let go and to receive
WHO DO WE WANT TO REACH
- Reach out to each other and beyoned…
- Seek each other’s skills
- Amplify objectives with trustworthy women
- In harmony with myself, I reach all others
- Sharing our gifts with women / all ages who wish
- Regional circles – one/two/ persons to send reps
- Fundraisers – to give and to receive
WHAT IS THE FIRE WE SHARE
Work with – be a voice for
- Children, young people (values, education)
- Women (initiation), Menopause
- Other groups who have no voice: e.g. refugees, nature, elderly, sick people
- Response to crisis at the community level
CONTACT / STARTING FROM OURSELVES
- Inner voice
- We need to be human and an example for the surroundings.
- Have to listen to higher guidance to solve problems of today
- Find true love and peace through meditation, stress the spiritual life.
- Collect rubbish from the seaside to help waters and animals (whatever happens to the earth happens to us as we are a part of her).
- Become who we are (respecting the 5 elements)
- We are the voice of the voiceless.
- We want to serve humanity to balance female and male qualities.
- Whatever we do we radiate by it and do it with love.
- Trust and remember the Spirit