Another perspective

Participant Blogger #13, who’s asked to be named,  shares his view of the daily group dialogue sessions.

“The group dialogue session on 13 August, was on two levels a special one. On a general scale because it was the first including the new participants who had just arrived from the refugee camps of Tindouf in South-West Algeria. Some lacking even basic English, it poses a continuous challenge for the course. As I was serving as the facilitator, it furthermore added value for me. A facilitator, briefly, has to prepare the session in addition to guiding the participants, preferably in an ironic, almost telepathic fashion.

“I have never participated in organised group dialogues, and facilitating is a tricky task – whilst attempting to paradoxically both interfere and withdraw it is really the initiation of each session that dictates the course of the specific dialogue, as I see it. The power truly lies in the hands of the facilitator when presenting the three maxims that serve as the ground stone for the session, not to forget the quote or poem read out for the group.

“I have had my reservations toward the concept of group dialogues. They tend to get overly emotional. Pathetic? Perhaps. Honest in a really dishonest way, at least. I. Just. Can’t. Stand. It. when people so obviously attempt to please the rest by lying to themselves, basically.

“In many ways it is the epitome of the human creed for justifying our presence. Many feel uncomfortable if they are not constantly reassuring themselves that what they have to contribute with is more important than that of others, even when it so evidently is not.”



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