Transition Liverpool hosted its 2nd Annual Symposium - Feeding Liverpool in a World in Energy Crisis - recently and we've now uploaded the photos and outcomes from the event to the website. You can check this out here.

Thanks to everyone for coming along and to the Liverpool Quakers and the Liverpool Primary Care Trust for supporting the event.

Be the Change Symposium: Liverpool Quaker Meeting House: 9/10/10

The symposium drew participants from a range of backgrounds, some representing specific interest groups, some attending as individuals. The event was oversubscribed with a queue for returned tickets.

Three volunteer facilitators took us through the history of the movement, which originated from the Pachamama Alliance - the aim being to seek to establish an;

Environmentally sustainable, spiritually fulfilling, socially just human presence on the planet as the guiding principle of our time.

We were invited to consider these as one inter-connected aim.

The process of the Symposium then followed a logical path considering the following questions:
  • Where are we now?
  • How did we get here?
  • Where do we go from here?
  • What is possible for the future?
Whilst this appears to be a fairly conventional format the element that made the symposium distinctive (and, in my view much more effective) was the weight given to the participant's emotional response when considering these questions. After a DVD presentation on each of the first three questions we were invited to relax and reflect upon our emotions before a discussion in pairs or small groups. This enabled some of us to acknowledge feelings of fear, confusion or anger rather than trying to ignore them. Later whilst considering the question "Where do we go from here?" we were guided in a visualisation of how the world would be if we achieved the goal - this helped to identify the specific changes which were most important to us individually and therefore (hopefully) those we would be most determined to bring about.

Be the Change also states that what is needed to arrive at the goal of an environmentally sustainable, spiritually fulfilling, socially just human presence on the planet as the guiding principle of our time is a shift of our world view from a belief that we are separate to a belief in the inter-connectedness of all things and we viewed a DVD featuring Thomas Berry (Cultural Historian) and Brian Swim (Cosmologist) who wrote "The Universe Story" (1992).

Considering the last question of the day was led by Transition Liverpool who organised groups based on the impassioned concerns of people at the Symposium. We were encouraged to behave like butterflies and flit from one group to the next allowing for an exchange of ideas between groups. As is always the case this session was simply not long enough but the event was managed effectively enough to allow feedback from all of the groups.

I found this to be an exhausting but exhilarating day which I am sure will have a lasting effect on me. We were encouraged to live in a state of "blessed unrest" which I found inspirational. The day could not have run so smoothly without the efforts of Friends from Liverpool as well as other members of Transition Liverpool.

Lisa Hoyle is a member of Liverpool Meeting and a practising Hypnotherapist.

On the 9th October 2010, Transition Liverpool, in conjunction with the Be the Change organisation, ran a free one day workshop that explored the reasons why we find ourselves facing an environmental catastrophe and how we might develop a sense of personal responsibility. We also had a short Open Space meeting at the end where we discussed ideas for projects in Liverpool. It was really well attended with about 70 people there, from quite a range of different organisations.

We'd particularly like to thank the Quaker Meeting House, the Be the Change Team and the great volunteers on the day who all donated time, facilities and work hours to put on the event.