OWL Global Wisdom Circle – 4/14/2015
Listening to the Enemy

First Speakers

Len & Libby Traubman are co-founders of the 22-year-old Jewish-Palestinian Living Room Dialogue of San Mateo, now preparing for its 276th meeting. For 30 years they’ve brought enemies together around the world, facilitating face-to-face community building dialogue from personal experience with Soviets and Americans, Armenians and Azerbaijanis, Jews and Palestinians, and most recently Muslim and Christian Nigerians. Recently they’ve facilitated dialogue via Skype and Zoom between diverse citizens of Korea, Japan, Singapore, and Myanmar. You can find out more about the Traubmans and their work at their OWL profiles.

First Speakers’ Story

Part 1: How Their Dialogue Work Got Started

Part 2: Early Lessons in Peacemaking

Part 3: Challenges in Bringing Enemies Together

Part 4: Most Important things They’ve Learned

Community Response

Len & Libby’s Question to the Group

Kay Sandberg
Ashland, Oregon

Karen Yeo

Wendy Berk
Half Moon Bay, California

Barbara Nussbaum
Cape Town, South Africa

Debbie Shapiro
Jerusalem, Israel

Marty Gross
Piedmont, California

Claudia Miller
Piedmont, California

Abidjan, Ivory Coast

More about OFFUH and his work at Feb. 10 OWL Wisdom Circle 1

Aryae Coopersmith
Half Moon Bay, California


Please share any additional reflections you have in the Comments section below.

OWL Wisdom Circle 1, March 10, 2015 – How Small Groups Can Change the World

First Speaker

Alan Briskin Ph.D., is an OWL Guide and one of our founding members. Co-founder of the Collective Wisdom Initiative, Alan is a consultant, artist, and researcher. His co-authored book, The Power of Collective Wisdom, won the 2010 Nautilus Award in the category of Business and Leadership. Another recent book, Daily Miracles: Stories and Practices of Humanity and Excellence in Health Care, written with Jan Boller, was chosen as the 2007 Book of the Year by the American Journal of Nursing in the area of Public Interest and Creative Works. Alan, honored by Saybrook University as the 1997 Noted Humanist Scholar, is a leading voice in the field of organizational learning and development.

Alan’s decades of work with business, health care, and non-profit organizations around the world — helping then understand and embody the power of collective wisdom — has led him to a deep understanding, vital to our OWL community, of how small groups can change the world.

First Speaker’s Story

Part 1: From Personal Background to Life’s Work

Part 2: From Alienation to Collective Wisdom

Part 3: Five Conditions for the Emergence of Collective Wisdom

Document: Five Conditions for the Emergence of Collective Wisdom

Part 4: How Small Groups Can Change the World

Document: A Brief History of Small Groups That Changed the World

Community Response

  1. One of the questions that Alan offered for us to reflect on: what is your own experience of the relationship of small groups to larger scale change?
  2. Any other personal reflections to share in response to Alan’s story?

Please share your reflections in the Comments section below.

OWL Wisdom Circle 1 – Jan. 13, 2015

First Speaker: OWL Member Deidre Combs is an author, consultant, teacher, an adjunct faculty member at Columbia University and an assistant professor at Montana State University. Over the past 20 years she has been facilitating dialogue and providing cross-cultural conflict resolution training after writing three books on that topic. She provides leadership training and coaching for State Department sponsored international activists, teachers, and government and university student leaders.

Deidre’s opening comments:

  • Her work as a consultant on global leadership projects with the U.S. State Department. These involve bringing young leaders from around the world, from places that are often in conflict with each other, to the U.S., where they learn to bridge differences, and develop understanding, empathy, trust and cooperation across cultural, religious, and political divides.
  • Her story. How she got from her technology consulting work with IBM, to the University of Creation Spirituality where she studied and taught with Matthew Fox, to her current roles with the U.S. State Department, Columbia University, and Montana State University.
  • Her passion and mission in life: Conflict Resolution as a Spiritual Practice.
  • Her question for the circle.

Also attending: Wendy Berk, Barbara Nussbaum, Kay Sandberg, Valerie Stinger, Len Traubman, Libby Traubman, Barbara Zilber, Aryae Coopersmith

Follow-up question from Aryae:

  • Should the OWL community explore this topic further by convening a new circle, inviting peacemakers from around the world, focused on global conflict resolution?

Your comments: Please share your thoughts and reflections at Leave a Reply below.

Next gathering of OWL Wisdom Circle 1 is on February 10. We invite you to RSVP to join us then!

OWL Wisdom Circle 1 — Nov. 10, 2014

First Speaker: Min Lee, Co-Founder & “Princess of Possibility” at PlayMoolah, a software and education company headquartered in Singapore that designs educational, digital and community experiences that inspire transformation — in changing the narrative about money.

Attending: Kay Sandberg, Sima Sanghvi, Valerie Stinger, Karen Yeo, Jum, Aryae Coopersmith

Opening Comments by Min:

Min’s question to the circle: What would you like to change about the way you’re relating to money in your own life, and what would you like to change about the way money functions systemically in our world?

Some themes from our reflections in the circle:

  • How I spend my money has consequences in the rest of the world. Examples: if I go out to buy lots of cheap stuff, how does that affect people who are working for low wages in Bangeladesh? If I buy and use disposable stuff, what does that do to the health of our planet? What concrete changes can I make in my own use of money to support a healthier world?
  • Balancing the impulse to work hard, live frugally, and save as much money as we can, so we can deal with an uncertain future — with wanting to feel abundant, live abundantly and trust that no matter what comes up, we can handle it. What does living in abundance mean in terms of the choices we make in our lives?
  • Similarity between choices about money and choices about health — we make short-term choices that cumulatively produce long-term results. Most people want to change their habits only when their choices have led them to immediate pain. How to support people in living with a longer perspective on both their physical and financial health?
  • How do we allocate our financial resources to do the most good for others, while taking good care of ourselves?
  • How do we make the best use of all the different kinds of capital we have access to — social capital, knowledge capital, etc., as well as financial capital — to make a positive difference in the world?

Your comments: If you were in the circle and would like to add an additional theme we discussed, or have any further comments and reflections, please share them below. If you were not in the circle, please feel free to share your thoughts as well.

Next gathering of OWL Wisdom Circle 1 is on December 8. We invite you to RSVP to join us then!