Session 3: Supporting People in Seeing Each Other’s Humanity

Wednesday, December 20th

No amount of disagreement or impacts would result in a conflict unless there is loss of trust in addition. In this session we plan to focus on the implications of this for conflict facilitation. If we want our facilitation of conflict to support liberation and togetherness, engaging directly with trust is likely to be a key element. This is so even though not all conflicts end up with restored trust between the parties. In every moment, in every transition, whenever we reflect, appreciate, or acknowledge what we hear, and with everything we do, we have a unique opportunity to pull everyone towards togetherness and to plant a seed of vision by focusing on what reminds all of us of possibility, trust, life, and care for the whole. This goes beyond focusing on solving problems and even beyond focusing only on each individual’s needs. Facilitating conflict processes can be sacred work that invites all into questioning our deepest narratives within and beyond the conflict itself.

This session touches on the deepest sources of where conflict arises from and on how we can respond to them:

  • Sustaining our own capacity for vision to be able to offer it to those who are struggling with conflict 
  • Supporting people to see each other's perspective as part of humanizing them, before and during any meeting 
  • Discerning whether or not to bring together the people involved in the conflict and when is the optimal time for them be able to speak and listen with enough capacity to move the process forward 
  • Removing the layer of aloneness that people experience in conflicts even when we can do nothing to change their actual experience 
  • Reflecting to people their own and each other's deepest essence, especially when patterns are activated 
  • Leaning on systemic orientation to support tenderness for self and other 
  • Supporting people in making acknowledgments and offering them ourselves otherwise to set the tone of the field 
  • Adapting our approach based on our moment-by-moment assessment of the capacities of each party to stretch towards liberation 
  • Navigating all that arises and using all available information to support the parties in finding, together, what they want to about the conflict 
  • As possible, supporting the parties in taking on continued practical steps towards liberation