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Corporate Globalization Learning Ritual

Before the ritual:

• Have five copies of the globalization history ready.
• Identify four volunteers to read the four parts of the globalization history (See Notes).
• Arrange a meeting space that will permit the group to sit in a circle.
• Have a drum available.
• Prepare a flip chart page of global economy acronyms (WTO=…GATT=…,etc.)

Instructions and Facilitation

1. As people gather, ask the volunteer readers to space themselves around the circle, clockwise from your position, in alphabetical order of their assigned reading.

2. Welcome participants and provide a brief overview of what will happen: statement of intention, preparing to participate, dedication of the ritual, several rounds of readings, time for participant responses, and reflection on the experience.

3. State the intention of the ritual (or exercise):
• to offer information about the WTO and corporate globalization,
• to reflect on how this economic structure affects Earth and all our relations, and
• to support the positive disintegration of the industrial growth society.

4. Ask people to count off by 4s (including the readers). Tell them that they will be listening to the information they are about to hear from two perspectives, both at the same time: First, they will be listening as themselves—as Shambhala Warriors (or, if more appropriate, as those who bring both wisdom about what is happening in our world, and compassion for all of life).

Additionally, by the power of their imaginations, participants will be listening from another perspective, as follows:
• Numbers “1” will listen from the perspective of a person in the 2/3 world;
• Numbers “2” will listen from the perspective of an “other than human” being;
• Numbers “3” will listen from the perspective of a future human being;
• Numbers “4” will listen from the perspective of the decision makers in government, corporations and trade organizations.

Hold a brief silence in which participants settle into their dual listening perspectives.

5. Dedicate the ritual (for example, to the healing of our own hearts and to the healing of our world).

6. Following a single drum beat, the readings begin.

7. After each second round of readings, beat the drum three times, followed by a pause of a few seconds before the next reading. Following the last reading, sound three drum beats.

8. For the first round of responses to what has been read, invite participants to speak from perspectives 1-4, renaming them as you do, and asking them to speak in the voice of that perspective. (Note: if the group is large, invite a number of responses from each perspective, in numerical order, to insure that each is heard.)

9. Invite a collective sounding (any sound) of unspoken or unexpressed feelings, and to release the identity of the numbered perspectives.

10. After a brief silence, invite reflections from the Shambhala Warrior (or “wise, compassionate”) perspective, as time allows.

11. If strong, unfinished feelings are evident, it is helpful to form small groups for further processing and reflection.


Notes:

1. About the readers: a) Try to select readers who represent the ethnic, age, and gender make-up of the participants. b) Identify the readers by the letters A,B,C, & D, corresponding with the readings. c) Ask them to read clearly, without inflection, and allowing 2-3 seconds between readings. Note that three drum beats will occur at the end of every other “round” of readings, again followed by 2-3 seconds before reading continues.

2. About timing: In total, the ritual usually requires a minimum of one hour. An hour and fifteen minutes is ideal. The timing might look as follows:
• Call together and get settled – 5 minutes
• Introduction/overview – 5 minutes
• Dedication through readings – 15-20 minutes
• First round of responses – 15-20 minutes
• Second round of reflection – 15-20 minutes

3. If participants are familiar with the “breathing through” practice, remind them that it may be helpful to them if strong feelings arise during the readings. (Participants may also be given permission to express emerging feelings by making sounds as they listen.)

4. Wherever it is appropriate, acknowledge that the globalization history was inspired by and adapted from Chellis Glendenning’s Off the Map, with additions and updates.

5. Following the last assigned reading and before the final drum beats (step 7), the facilitator may wish to add brief new information that was not included in the readings (using the same form as the readings).

6. If this ritual is done in a workshop that includes despair work, it is best to do the ritual before the despair work.