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Last night I went to a meeting of the 40-something peer group of the large intentional community I've recently discovered. It was a small meeting: just three regular members, one of the community elders, and myself, but that was for the best as far as this introvert was concerned.

As with the women's circle, I felt like I had found a piece of my tribe -- and this one was perhaps even more compatible. There wasn't a spiritual overlay to the meeting; we were all the same age; there were both women and men. As I listened to the men talk (which was in proportion to the amount that the women talked), I realized how much I've been missing male energy simply on a friend/comrade level.



The group is dedicated to personal development and self-awareness, which are both very important to me. As with Sunday's meeting, the langauge they used and the issues they spoke of grappling with were comfortably familiar to me. They've been together, with some fluctuation in membership, for about 15 years now, and they talk about their work in down-to-earth, still-on-the-journey terms, but clearly are far more grounded than many.

And I realized this morning that I would much rather sit in a circle/community with other people who share my dedication to development and awareness -- and who are effective at it -- but not have an exact spiritual match, than I would with co-religionists who did not share those values, or were not able to apply them in a meaningful manner.

However, I was surprised and pleased when my mention of my work in hermetic magic over the past couple of years prompted one of the men to say that he'd fallen off his own practices in that area in the last six months, and I'd inspired him to return to them. It would be nice to have someone else around who shared even some of that language and frame of reference.

As I drove home, I had another important realization about myself. This is the first new group I've been part of in the past several years. I've done a lot of growing and changing during that time, and it was interesting to reflect on the evening and my observations of myself.

Both last night and Sunday (but especially last night) I felt calm, confident, grounded. I could see the interest and response in the way people listened to my words, and I was able to remain focused on others as they spoke. I felt like I spoke and kept silent appropriately. I felt like I was poised and relaxed at once. In short, I felt like a grown-up who was comfortable in my own skin, who was able to engage from a place of relaxed strength, wanting to be courteous to others and respectful of established norms, but not in the least bit worried about "being liked" or making a misstep.

And that was an amazingly good feeling.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
oakmouse
Oct. 21st, 2009 12:46 pm (UTC)
Congratulations! *hugs*
sashajwolf
Oct. 21st, 2009 03:59 pm (UTC)
That sounds great! I agree with you about values being more important than beliefs for this sort of thing.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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Queen of Swords

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