World Cafés on Peace & Justice
In the first months of 2016, Restorative Auroville hosted a series of conversations in the co-creative World Café format. They took place on Monday evenings in the coffee shop “Le Zephyr” in Auroville.
What can we do as a community to openly share past pain and to restore connection and trust? This was the starting point and central question for these 3 evenings.
Community members, volunteers and guests, all were invited to join us in exploring different ways of healing relationships which have been developed in various parts of the world.
The first World Café, January 25th, was dedicated to the truth & reconciliation process using the example of South Africa, where the philosophy of Ubuntu - "I am because you are" -
is the strong basis for community building.
It started with a short documentary on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) of 1996-1998, set up by Nelson Mandela and chaired by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, who also appears in an interview. (1)
How to create unity in community was the subject of the second evening on March 7th, using the example of Nepal.
We showed excerpts from the documentary "Raamro Aakha Ma - In the Eyes of the Good", telling the story of former Maoist combatants, conflict victims, and government officials engaging in a restorative dialogue, following the aftermath of the 10-years armed conflict in Nepal.
One of the dialogue participants highlights:
"Without other human beings, we are like fish without water. In this peace process there is a need for unity among everybody. Until we are united, we will not get justice, we will not achieve peace in our society." (2)
In the third Café on April 14th we explored a culturally-based healing process of Canadian First Nations. They still suffer from the devastating impacts of having been forced into Residential Schools for more than hundred years. This coercive assimilation practice of the Ministry of Indian Affairs dramatically shattered Aboriginal cultures, children, families and communities throughout North America.
The evening began with excerpts from a documentary of the Choctaw Film Maker Phil Lucas, which had started the fire that ignited the Canadian Residential School Healing Movement.
After the films, we shared our thoughts and insights inspired by what we had seen on the screen. At our coffee tables, we also developed ideas of how we might use this process to restore connection in Auroville among our different cultures.
These programs of "Restorative Auroville" (L'aura, Janet, Shanti, Kati and Hélène) were facilitated by David Nightingale and Kati.
- find our short documentary-compilation on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (13’56”) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULePHQT4Kso)
- “Raamro Aakha Ma - In the Eyes of the Good” (55’18”/ full length) in 6 different languages on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tGu7BM-6Xw&index=7&list=PLFBWNVuESzSgxSaVatdvFeSApjj0L9OvS
- “Healing the Hurts”, full length documentary (59’40”) on vimeo: https://vimeo.com/128567591