Last week I was invited by Peter Garrett and Jane Ball, from the academy for professional dialogue, to contribute to the introduction of dialogue and to facilitate it to a group of people with different backgrounds. The initiative for these three days came from the Flux foundation, which wants to contribute to a more meaningful world through various companies. Participants came from Flux Dialogue, the Natural Museum, Climate Network, Dialogue in Practice and the Flux foundation.
The reason was the soon-to-be-opened climate house on the museum grounds where, after the opening at the end of March, guided tours will be organized for young people and students which will be finished by a dialogue on climate change.
After a good flight to Oslo airport, a short train ride to Oslo city and a short taxi ride to the Natural history museum, I was warmly welcomed by Petter Sorum who brought me to the Lids hus auditorium where the day would start. Soon after, people came in. Within the group of participants there was a wide variety of experience with dialogue. There were people who had no experience yet, some a little and others a lot of experience.
After the welcome from the founder of the Flux foundation and initiator of these days Henrik B.
Tschudi. We were able to meet and get to know the people and learned about the content of the coming days. We ended with a delicious lunch in the opposite Munch museum. The first part of the afternoon, Peter and Jane explained how they experienced their development with dialogue from a meeting with David Bohm and how it has grown into a professional way of working systemically with dialogue.
Two workshops were planned for the second part of the afternoon. The first, with Peter and Jane, had the subject "Dialogue in prison, with addicts, and with those worrying about the future of mankind". The second workshop that I was allowed to give was "Young People in Dialogue about the Future." Particularly the explanation about the basis of transactional analysis and how to use it towards an even better dialogue with young people inspired many workshop participants. Certainly because it makes it very clear which positions are helpful in such dialogues.
After the day was closed, I was invited, along with Peter and Jane, to Henrik and his wife Gerd who surprised us with a delicious dinner and nice conversations. During dinner it started to snow and Jane, Peter and I were able to take a nice walk through the snow on the way to the hotel. Since I had to get up at 4 AM to catch my morning flight, I slept wonderfully that night.
The following morning we received an explanation from Peter and Jane about the importance of and the various forms of check-in. By practicing these different forms, the participants were given the opportunity to actually experience them. After a short pause we were given explanations about the different ways of communication and how you come to thinking together. After another super lunch, the dialogue skills and facilitation received attention, and exercises also made it possible to experience what was shared. The workshops afterwards continued on what had been treated the day before and it was possible to see how things could be applied in practice.
In the evening I was invited by Geir Hagberg, who, together with Liv Ronglan, started an NGO sponsored by Flux Foundation to work very actively with dialogue and young people. A fascinating conversation in which we jointly investigated the possibilities and limitations that you might encounter with such an initiative. There is a good chance that I may play a limited role in their initiative and may come to Oslo again. In any case, I have expressed my commitment to helping them where I can. The pizza and the glass of beer tasted great after the long day and the half-hour walk from the pizzeria to the hotel made the day complete.
Wednesday morning we gathered again in the auditorium and after the continuation of dialogue
skills and facilitating dialogue. Again delicious lunch, now in the Café Handwerk on the site of the museum. We ended with a check-out and said goodbye to each other. Dropped off at the train station and before you know it you are back in the familiar Zandvoort aan Zee and you share your experiences with the family.
I look back on a few days with incredibly friendly and hospitable people, sharing experiences, being able to learn more about dialogue and seeing myself flying to Oslo in the near future.
Vi ses snart Norge! Hilsen fra Joop Boukes