COMPONENTS OF HOLISTIC LEARNING
By Dave Till and Christine Lines
This is the ninth article in our series on Holistic Learning, to read the introduction and view the other components to follow please click here.
9. Meditation and Attunement
In a holistic community, meditation is an essential way to connect with our spiritual nature and move beyond the mental and emotional realms, into a place of inner silence and stillness.
Meditation and attunement are daily practices within the Findhorn Foundation, both in the service departments and in the guest programmes. There are daily meditations in the main sanctuaries morning and evening, held by community members, before and after work.
Most departments begin the morning shift with a short sharing or check-in, followed by a brief attunement, which is almost like a ‘mini meditation.’ The attunement is an opportunity to pause and connect with how we’re feeling in the moment, to connect with each other, and expand our awareness into the spiritual nature of life. It can also be an opportunity to focus on our intentions for being together, the project or the task at hand, and bless the day ahead. People often comment on how much more smoothly the day unfolds when it begins so consciously.
Attunement at Findhorn can also mean the practice of the individual going within to contact their higher, intuitive self for wisdom and direction. This is usually done in silence and looks like meditation. Gardeners might combine this with their knowledge of horticulture and people can apply this approach in many ways.
Each working group at Findhorn is also encouraged to have a weekly attunement. Usually this consists of a meditation, a personal sharing in a circle, and a discussion about business matters.
We’re experiencing amazing spring weather here in Scotland at the moment with beautiful sunshine. This afternoon the Communications team decided to have our attunement by the beach rather than in the office! We enjoyed a walking meditation through the dunes to the sea and found a sheltered cove to sit and share. Immersed in the beauty of nature, surrounded by gorse bushes abundantly covered with yellow flowers, we breathed in the unique fragrance of this wildflower reminiscent of coconut oil.
Sharing about our personal lives, there was a depth of connection with ourselves and each other, a tangible feeling of authenticity. As a team it was decided some time ago that we prefer to separate our sharing circles and business meetings, however some teams within the community combine them into one afternoon.
Both meditation and attunement can help us listen to our inner wisdom and follow our intuition. Groups or teams can also ‘attune’ to gain a sense of direction. In a recent Findhorn Foundation Council meeting, once all the information was presented and discussed, there was a short attunement before the ‘temperature check’ of opinions, (it wasn’t a formal voting process in this instance.) The spirit is encouraged to lead in the attunement process.
Attunement in itself is not a decision making process – it informs decisions which can then be made by other means. The exception to this is if every group member receives the same solution during an attunement, then decision making is usually quite clear!
Each week we will introduce a new topic. Please feel free to add your views and comments to expand on it more fully.
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