Notes on OSI (US) Board Special Meeting January 17, 2008

Present: Gabriel, Peggy, Tree, John, Karen, Doug



Peggy: At the level of OSI, I sit more in a question of ďIs it time for me to roll off?Ē Iíve been here since the beginning and wonder if my absence would create an opening for whatever OSI needs to be now. What is most of service? I think of OSI as this potential energy that is there to be tapped when needed. At the level of my commitment to holding the space for open space in the world, it seems to be something woven into the very fabric of my being. Weíre living in times of extinction level issues. We collectively require some kind of ďupwisingĒ if we are to remain here as a species. Practicing / living in open space is one of the most hopeful practices I see, and it informs everything I do with others. Itís about earth, spirit, and the human future.

John: Doing and promoting open space feels like my contribution to fostering a culture where peoplesí dignity and worth is honored. My involvement in OSI is an opportunity to stay in the loop, connect with people I like and admire, and have a sense of being able to contribute.

Doug: This is important stuff to me. It is of the essence of my world work... to help us all live in a larger world. I see the question in two parts. 1) What are the gifts weíve received from open space; 2) What are the gifts we can give. Gifts from open space: This picture of a larger world. Thatís the live question thatís been working on me: What can it mean to have a larger world? Larger because of diversity of perspectives, use of our imagination and the imagination that emerges. We have a world focus in this group and you donít see that in a lot of places. OSI board is open for me and each of us to be heard vs when we are facilitating our voices are rarely heard... this space is a gift. Itís our duty now that weíve received this gift to keep it circulating. To keep opening space for the world -- which I see as larger than open space technology. Opening space for extinction level issues and the various things we see in the world.

Karen: For me open space has always been a way of life even before we had that name. I think of OSI as being able to give back with others and make a difference. I think we have a bright future with the possibilities of opening more space. Being a part of this group helps discipline me to stay up on what is going on. And to continue to honor Earth and all her creatures.

Tree: I inwardly hold space well and powerfully. By participating on this Board, I feel like Iím holding space for open space in the world and I like that. All roads lead to open space. Itís a gift we need to keep holding and growing.

Gabriel: I am driven by an insatiable curiosity; OS is a phenomenon that invites all diversity to be honored; In the world at large, we spend a lot of energy on our differences in ways that get us stuck and we forget about honoring each other. Honoring the full range of diversity is the core of what I appreciate about OS. OSI Board is a regular touch point for me that creates space for all the perspectives I encounter in my daily travels to come together in a larger context. It gives me a global sense of holding space

ROUND 2 What are we hearing? What meaning do we make of it?

Doug: Iím hearing a lot of ďholding space for opening space,Ē global sentiment, importance of extinction level issues. ďHeart-stirring, puzzling, unfolding experimentĒ - Ralph Coppleman - that could describe open space.

Tree: I hear a lot of reverence / resonance for open space. I love the level of alignment we have together.

Gabriel: Iím really working with sense of striving for understanding and embodying what it means to be embodied individual and a part of the whole; feel like I never have the right words. Very fundamental work. Validity and value and purpose of my individuality and my drop in the bucket. Holding them to Nth degree simultaneously.

John: I appreciate that -- the challenge of being really serious and clear about your intentions but not take yourself too seriously. Open space can help us get done what needs to get done in terms of actions and change... and itís a way of being.

Karen: One of the beauties of this group is that the energy doesnít stop anyone from doing what they need to do or others from coming to be part of it.

Peggy: Weíve kept this in a way thatís its minimalist enough that Iím happy to stay. I know that Iím holding it with potentiality, not bringing a driving force. As long as thatís of service, Iím willing to do it. When itís ready to do more, someone with the energy to do that will show up for it. I hear the both/and of individual nourishment that people get from being with kindreds and passion for being in service of something that we believe matters on the largest scale. My first experience of open space taught me that when things are really healthy, the life energy of the individual and collective are both served. As Iíve been working on evolutionary dynamics that change social systems, I keep coming back to the observation that itís in that space of beginning to experience myself as of a larger whole -- when that gets internalized, itís a significant change point in peoplesí lives. I see that happening when people experience open space at its best.

Lisa (via email): What draws me to the OSI-US Board and its important work: † ∑†††††††† I am dedicated to and excited about sharing support, education and information about Open Space facilitation and practice around the world (including the US).† ∑†††††††† I love the way OSI-US offers delight and belief in anyone who is exploring and learning more about this method, and I love how OSI-US embraces new (or new-to-us) practitioners into our world community. ∑†††††††† I love the respect and admiration we hold for each other. ∑†††††††† I love how it all works in Open Space Ė the ideas, the partnership, the tasks, the responsibilities, the passion. ∑†††††††† I am so honored to be part of such a skilled, experienced and kind group of professionals. ∑†††††††† I love our collective space-holding for OSLIST and out in the world, separately and together, live and in emails and the web. ∑†††††††† I have a special interest in building a more robust OS community of practice in South America and in Africa Ė I have for some years now been corresponding with and sharing educational materials with practitioners and learners in those two continents, and I have also been in conversation with several sets of folks on each continent to build capacity to their hosting a future WOSonOS2008 some few years from now.† So you never know... ;o)

Who will draft invitation letter? Doug will write first draft.

Doug: A couple of things that might go in it Capture some of the comments weíve had here as a found poem. Iím seeing a broad range of things we could ask for: Perspectives, imagination, and energy around open space. Materials we could sell on our website. Access Queen contributions. Invite others who can spread the opening of space to come to WOSONOS. Invite others to help us open space through sponsorship. Seek matching contributions from employers. Ideas of places to open space and help they need to make it happen. Creating new pages on OS World. New technologies to open space -- e.g. the kinds of things Kerry has mentioned. Perhaps create a page on OS World for organizing conference calls. Ask for juicy questions in search of an open space. Ask people to post a live question to the OS List.

Peggy: I love this theme of giving in a broader sense.

Tree: We could ask people to contribute by telling us what open space means / has meant for them.

NEXT CALL: January 31 - 11am Pacific / 2pm Eastern