Thanks for your inspiring comments, Kate – and also for your question. We apologize for the delay. We’ve been juggling major projects and travel.
Our work occurs within traditional Indigenous frameworks, blended with modern approaches. For example, a millennia-old model situates all activities within the Four Directions. Each direction corresponds to several states of being and types of activity.
Creation space - Represented by a whole circle. At center is the balance point between being receptive (paying attention to what is already present or is emerging), and being active (designing an approach for the community process). Diné/Navajo tradition teaches that this balance is the source of life energy – as well as the energy of any group problem-solving process.
Intention Space – Setting intention, represented by the East direction, involves making conscious decisions. This entails spoken and unspoken commitments by all participants. Diné/Navajo traditional philosophy about intention connects Bík’ehgo da’iináanii (that which gives direction to life) with the concept of thinking “good thoughts” (Nitsáhákees). Drawing from a background of values and guideposts for living, one projects into the future in a positive way that which one wants to see happen. Since both thoughts and words have the power to influence and create subsequent reality, intention-setting must be done with care.
Vision Space - the group or community aligns on an ideal image of the “future,” of what is possible and what has meaning in support of the highest good. This is a key part of the process of Nahat’á (planning), represented by the South direction.
These are brief excerpts from a robust traditional model, which we have augmented with modern approaches, under the guidance and authorization of revered elders. Other spaces include: Understanding, Solution, Action, Renewal.
Our work will be guided by such models and practices, which we can map to distinct phases over a 3-year timeline. Short-term phases and activities include: * Refine charter (Key Ps document attached to our proposal) * Broaden stakeholder analysis * Engage key stakeholders * Expand core team * Finalize governance * Secure funding * Refine core method of accessing, learning, codifying, transmitting ancient wisdom & practices - combined with modern innovations * Acknowledge & celebrate accomplishments
There would be many more phases - through Implementation, Impact Analysis, Continuous Improvement and more. Note that many phases will occur concurrently.
What's our vision of success for 3 years from now? (Note some items below mature most fully in a timeline beyond 3 years) * Dozens of Indigenous nations & communities on many continents have adopted our core methodology; have tailored it to their specific needs, under their complete sovereignty and autonomy; and have helped enhance it * Extensive virtual and actual forums for exchange and learning between these nations & communities * Several rings of non-Indigenous allies from multiple arenas of society are engaged with this effort * Using these hybridized ancient and modern approaches, nations & communities, in tandem with non-Indigenous allies, have taken on solving key challenges related to peace, prosperity, and the planet. For example, Indigenous people who have gone through these processes have attained numerous individual and collective leadership positions on topics like climate change and global sustainability, such that we are increasingly at the table in hallways of power and influence, and are making vital contributions. Another example: this method has greatly enhanced several existing grassroots struggles for peace, prosperity & the planet, and has catalyzed new ones * Participants have created myriad workshops, courses, books, videos, articles, campaigns, actions, exchanges, collaboratives, blogs, etc. that transform policies in governmental, nonprofit, educational and other spheres, around topics like sustainability, peace studies, peace initiatives, economic models of prosperity and well-being, and more * Indigenous nations & communities have built and deepened alliances with other nations, and with non-Indigenous allies * Numerous divisions within and between nations & communities have been healed, and also between the Indigenous & modern worlds * Significant cultural revitalization, autonomy, and empowerment of several nations & communities: we are the foremost knowledge-holders and interpreters of our own traditions; and we are emerging leaders in applying hybridized methods to pressing regional, national and global issues of peace, prosperity and the planet * Broadening interest in embracing our traditions by people of all generations who may have forgotten them, never been aware of them, or only been partially aware * We are tracking and celebrating early successes on multiple impact metrics established early in the initiative