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how Allies hold Space

[et_pb_section admin_label="section"][et_pb_row admin_label="row"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text"] There are unseen forces at work — watching over us, respecting our free will, embracing us with love if we allow them.   - Jonathan Zap who is the Blue Dragon, and why a Ball? Much of what we practice at Be Space engages a compassionate observer. In Contemplative Dance Practice we call it the role of the well-wisher and onlooker. In Authentic Movement we cultivate an inner and outer witness. At Open Floor and other performance practices we bring the audience closer to us - dissolving the sense of separation and befriending the 'other' as ourselves. In all of our explorations we are making an offering to the seen and to the unseen. The day after I was handed the key to our new creative home at 211 Southeast 11th Ave, my dear friend Alouette and I brought in the first of many armloads of things to begin shaping the space into its intended purpose. Many allies have taken up residence at Be Space, but the Blue Dragon was the first among them. From its perch it has been witness to the full range of moments in Space - sacred naps, delightful surprises, musical

this is the Beginning

Life.Art.Being convenes this week. Here is a peek inside: I'm guessing this summer has been eye-opening for a large majority of us -- systems are collapsing, and we are waking up to the rift between ourselves and our world that has been slowly deepening. I might not be the only one whose mind feels chaotic; and lacking a container to respond to the unimaginable changes upon us, it's easy to tumble into busy-ness, confusion, and despair. Oh so long ago, I focused my college studies on environmental policy and social engagement.  I then founded the Center for Sustainable Living, a community education project in mid-Missouri. In those years I was angry, I was grief-stricken, and I worked an irrational number of hours each week attempting to respond to the world as I was coming to know it. It felt like the world and my mind were intensifying at great speed and in pace with each other. After spending over a decade in activist culture, my passion for the earth was reduced to exhausted ash. I came to the conviction that the fundamental challenge we are confronting is in our frayed sense of inter-connection. It is my belief and inspiration that we can begin to restore

The Blessing Tree

AIMLESS LOVE This morning as I walked along the lakeshore, I fell in love with a wren and later in the day with a mouse the cat had dropped under the dining room table. In the shadows of an autumn evening, I fell for a seamstress still at her machine in the tailor’s window, and later for a bowl of broth, steam rising like smoke from a naval battle. This is the best kind of love, I thought, without recompense, without gifts, or unkind words, without suspicion, or silence on the telephone. The love of the chestnut, the jazz cap and one hand on the wheel. No lust, no slam of the door – the love of the miniature orange tree, the clean white shirt, the hot evening shower, the highway that cuts across Florida. No waiting, no huffiness, or rancor – just a twinge every now and then for the wren who had built her nest on a low branch overhanging the water and for the dead mouse, still dressed in its light brown suit. But my heart is always propped up in a field on its tripod, ready for the next arrow. After I carried the mouse by the tail to a pile of leaves in the woods, I

A New Dance With Time.

[et_pb_section admin_label="section"][et_pb_row admin_label="row" make_fullwidth="on" use_custom_width="off" width_unit="on" use_custom_gutter="off" padding_mobile="off" allow_player_pause="off" parallax="off" parallax_method="off" make_equal="off" column_padding_mobile="on"][et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text" background_layout="light" text_orientation="left" use_border_color="off" border_color="#ffffff" border_style="solid"] Megan Phillips is an inspiring presence at Be Space. It has been a pleasure to play and share with her from month to month. In the time I've known her, I have come to understand that anything that inspires her, will probably inspire every other person I know. That's why I invited her to write a LoveNote for the Be Space blog. She is planning to host a study/practice group for Creating Time, starting May 22. Contact me for more info! I am a person who loves to be silly, creative and free. This is why I feel at home with art and why I love expressive arts practice in particular. It’s a way to play with bright colors, with weird sounds, with intriguing images or funny characters and receive meaningful insight about life and myself when I least expect it. This gives me hope. As one who is seriously ‘time challenged’, I forget all about creativity when I’m tangled in the mess of trying to be ‘on time’.

thank you notes & coming attractions

One year ago this week we had the pleasure of sharing an evening with the sweet music of Racquel Russo and the lovely sounds of Friendship Valley.  Our friend Tom McLaren created this video to remind us of the warmth and delight of the 2013 Spring Benefit. Be Space was just a pup at the time, not even a year old.  As businesses go, Be Space is still in her infancy.  But she knows what she wants and who she is growing into.  It's inspiring to see a community - or many tiny communities - grow around the vision of this studio.  Nearly everyone who comes through the doors has a certain warmth, an open curiosity, and a willingness to share & be surprised.  It is a complete delight to see people connect, create, and offer week after week.  There is always something new waiting to unfold. I was so touched when Tom sent this video over earlier this month.  Touched by his patient framing of the evening, by the smiling faces in the video, and by the reminder of the countless people who came together to support

how things change

https://youtu.be/OVCO_F0fUas This is one of the most beautiful movie scenes I have seen.  I return to it every year or two for a reminder of the true shape of sovereignty and for a big dose of sheer talent (a la Sally Potter, Tilda Swinton and Virginia Woolf). I also like this as a depiction of transformation.  We step out of a prescribed norm and find ourselves in a completely new world with an utterly different social body.  At the same time, the core sovereign self has not changed. Perhaps it has simply become less encumbered by the habits & trappings of an inauthentic life. When Tilda Swinton speaks those potent words "Nature! Nature! I am your bride. Take me," there is no doubt that this is the truest possible marriage. I love watching the leaves shake loose at this time of year, and am moved by the slow reveal of branches against the sky. As the seasons shift, I see our individual lives and creative expression echo the change. The detritus of past projects that no longer hold juice must fall away and leave

context is decisive.

An invented context is essentially a realm of possibility.  Joe DiMaggio, MD Two weeks ago I had the privilege of attending a training institute onPositive Community Norms in beautiful Big Sky Montana, followed by a week of deep watering at Naropa in Boulder with Barbara Dilley and the Contemplative Dance Practice tribe. Both of these places are storied and significant to me -- my astrology friends would appreciate the Saturn cycle that seems to link them. Montana was a central part of my Naropa senior project, Gaia's Witness, which entailed a month of backpacking with a troupe of women, bearing witness to and creating performance from the toxic and complicated abandoned copper mine, the Berkeley Pit. When I left Naropa in 2000, it was with a tremendously rich set of questions and disciplines -- all combining to foster a radical view of human sanity and its role in creating a more compassionate and inspiring world.  Fast forward to 2013 (the time of my Saturn opposition for those who are keeping track) and we are here in Portland with the lovely Be Space just pushing up through

Little Library at Be Space

A beautiful day in Portland -- enjoying a moment of sunshine on my front steps. This is just a quick post to share with you our newest addition. Our Little Free Library is officially open. This tiny bookhouse is now mounted right outside the Be Space door and loaded with books. If you'd like to take one or leave one, please do so anytime. We are happy to be providing something sweet for our neighbors & community. Little Free Libraries have been popping up everywhere for awhile, and I have long wished to steward one. Tiny wishes come true!

doing without knowing

We ache for the creative magic of cultural exchange which all but evaporates in the heat of the known. Reassurance comes in small packages -- an article about the understated release of Joss Whedon's surprise movie "Much Ado About Nothing", and a Naropa moment with Wendell Beavers about doing without knowing. Look! my business plan for Be Space! It has felt important in these early months to allow Be Space to introduce itself organically, with watchwords likecurious, minimalist and, of course, spacious as my guide. What I want from this project is a place that presents itself authentically, with its own authority and warmth. Having witnessed how complicated business can become when we over-effort, my mission is to create something simple and resilient. It's like this with the creative process. Shortly after a collaborator friend of mine became a new mom, we had to confront the challenge