Participant Testimonials of Taking Part
in an Empathy Circle.
"This rocks!! I really enjoyed this, it was like “Ok, I’m not going to be attacked. They are actually listening. I’m not going to be afraid to bring up topics because that is what we are here for, is to talk about these hot topic buttons and to get responses.”
"...this needs to be duplicated all over the world!"
"Because this is my first experience, I’m getting a better picture that the Liberals view on things, is individual. Liberals are more individual and conservatives are more group oriented. So it is helping me, and the more and more I do this, it’s helping me to get a balanced view of things. So I am really excited about this, and I agree with Sam, that this needs to be duplicated all over the world."
"I was just so happy with how smooth and comfortable it felt. It is not like those usual conversations where there is so much anger and emotion. We were actually able to talk about these issues and I just wish this could happen more in some of those smaller arenas where people are trying to have those conversations with maybe their family or friends. I wish this could be replicated more out in the country.
“It is not like those usual conversations where
there is so much anger and emotion.“
"I wish this could be replicated more
out in the country."
I felt impressed with how much agreement there really is. And about how this discussion naturally brought out what we did have in common and what we did agree on and makes it easier to figure out how do we move forward with these difficult issues. I appreciate that about this too."
"I’m so grateful that you both joined today. So I could have the opportunity to listen in and I am so impressed. I have heard of other circles and I don’t think they always go this smoothly. You guys did an awesome job. That was great, so nice, exactly how you want it to go. It’s though, it was already 2 hours long and I really wanted to hear more. There is just so much packed into this and we could have talked about so many other things. It’s super engaging. At first I didn’t know if I wanted to spend 2 hours of my Saturday doing this. Every time I do an Empathy Circle I wonder if I want to spend the time, but then I really being into it."
“It seems like it to goes better than
shutting people down.“
"That thing that we are not so different. That we all have our own experiences and own opinions but at the end of the day just hearing so much from everybody how much we want to really solve problems by coming to consensus is really good. Even though at the end of the day you do have to make decisions about and people are not going to be happy. It seems that when you both feel heard and you both get to talk about how you feel, you are willing to make uncomfortable decisions. It seems like to goes better than shutting people down. "
"I really enjoyed the empathy circle process because I listen to people in a way that is so much harder to do outside of this process. "
"I really enjoyed the empathy circle process because I listen to people in a way that is so much harder to do outside of this process. It gives me the opportunity to practice what I do want to put into my real life and my personal relationships and everything else. Just the beauty of it. "
"I think that active listening is skill. I was fortunate enough to get some training earlier in life and it is good to keep up with that because just to devote yourself entirely to listening and not to be thinking about what you are going to say back and to be genuinely invested in taking everything in and just listening to what the person is saying is a skill. It is an exercised skill and I think we are flexing that muscle. I think it’s good. "
"This is kind of an elixir to slow down, and be present, and get to know what is going on behind it all."
"I like that description of it being like a muscle. We have to practiced it to become good at it. I don’t know if good is the word. I think we all have post traumatic stress right now from the way the dialogue has been going. This is kind of an elixir to slow down, and be present, and get to know what is going on behind it all. And that is very much needed right now. So I hope more of us do it. "
"This is always cool. this is my third or fourth one of these.. It's a good tool in the tool belt. I don't think it can cure everything but it's an effective tool from what I have seen so far."
"I appreciate your honesty, and I think that something that is important in this process is for people to be honest and not pretend like we don't have disagreements or we are seeing things differently. It's important that we say so and I think, this container, of the Empathy Circle is strong enough to hold people really disagreeing with each other."
I was a part of this empathy circle yesterday, which was intended to be a gathering of people on the "left" and the "right" to be heard around what is being felt after the election results.
"One thing that felt alive that emerged for me along the way, was a longing for this kind of process to become our public process. I mean, instead of gathering for debates in which posturing and one-liners are the game, these gatherings could be transformed into full day or even a 2-3 day event where we use processes to go deeper into what the real needs are, for people of every perspective.
Once we are able to connect at this level, new possibilities emerge. It is no longer a battle. The enemy images we create tend to dissolve as we see the human being before us. We can talk about various strategies from a different energetic space. It becomes a co-creative process. This, I feel, is what is needed.
Yes, to me, the core issue that needs to be addressed is that we are allowing ourselves to be divided, and hold within our hearts and hands the power to change this."
"I LIKE how being selected to listen and mirror back what was said creates true hearing of another, and how feeling so heard creates the safety to share even more of one's feelings and perspectives."
" I WISH we could enjoy and learn from more diverse individuals and perspectives.
WHAT IF every conversation were so enhancing and enriching?"
"I LIKE how good it felt to be heard, and to hear others."
Loved the experience. It certainly broadened
my perspective and understanding in
creating an all inclusive society.
It was a great experience and one of the best thing that I actually learned is identity politics and how we need to be inclusive of all including the white population, the white citizens. We can not tend to just focus on minorities, we have to be inclusive of all if we want to create a true genuine culture of empathy for all.
Loved the experience. It certainly broadened my perspective and understanding in creating an all inclusive society. There were times where I saw how my opinions were biased and as I accepted them, I felt my heart opened up to embrace the diversity and uniqueness we all bring to the table. Empathy circle really works!!
Thank you Edwin for organizing it!
I felt my heart opened up to embrace
the diversity and uniqueness we all
bring to the table. Empathy circle
I have to say... I really enjoyed that.
So much to think about.
Everyone was fantastic!!!!
I learned that people who are different than me still have great intentions and everyone really just wants the best for everybody. We just have different ways of doing it.
I have to say... I really enjoyed that. So much to think about. Everyone was fantastic!!!!
Thanks for being patient!!
― JJ Brit
I always love these Empathy Circles because
the way it opens up communication.
I always love these Empathy Circles because the way it opens up communication. I just want to say that I really really value having someone who has completely different views from me. And today that would be you JJ, and I really appreciate you being here because this is were it really starts to make things happen. When we can really understand someone who completely has a different point of view. Like JJ said, understand there more similarity then differences.
"I hope that by replicating these empathy circles, having them go viral we can change society by building a culture of empathy where everyone is heard."
I always love Empathy Circles. I really think that these can change the world. That we can scale these up. If we can talk among each other, we can scale it up to the politicians, the pundits, to the powers that be, that came up, about the wealthy, the elites. I think we need to bring them into Empathy Circles too. I see what we are modeling as a way forward for the society and culture.
Grateful for everyone participation in the empathy circle today. As mentioned I hope that by replicating these empathy circles, having them go viral we can change society by building a culture of empathy where everyone is heard.
As always I appreciate what Art and JJ said, that diversity, just being heard and understood. Today, especially I appreciated that Megan brought up a more personal experience about empathy and when it can be abused and it's not just about the politics. It's about very personal dynamics and I appreciated that.
As my experience in the past.
I had a great, deep connection in
the Empathy Circle.
As my experience in the past. I had a great, deep connection in the Empathy Circle. I agree we talked about the politics of empathy circles in a way. I really appreciated it and everybody there. It gives me hope that when you really talk to other humans that you see that we have a lot more in common than differently and there are ways forward. As long as we are talking, we will figure it out.
We basically wove this fabric of conversation that allowed up to go really deep, in our thinking and our conversation.
We basically wove this fabric of conversation that allowed up to go really deep, in our thinking and our conversation. So I am grateful for the spaciousness of time for a spaciousness of thought and depth of thought.
...what is really nice about the process is you
drop into this space of the collective.
I done many of these and what is really nice about the process is you drop into this space of the collective. You get a spaces where peoples ideas are not clearly formulated, you drop into this sort of collective space of negotiating the boundaries or your ideas that you haven't formulated together. And that is a nice feeling. It's an unusual for of conversation that leads to different kinds of places than you usually get to.
I'm glad that it is a place where people can come to express their ideas and maybe some of you haven't had a chance to express these ideas in your circles. Especially with how heated things are getting. That is why we are here.
What I appreciate right now is being able to share ideas I don't necessarily have 100% articulated and that not being used against me, which so often happens in political conversations. if your idea are not laid out super clear then you are written off. Instead of it being collaborative. Like let's all kind of try to figure this out together, even if we are not exactly sure how to say it.
"I felt my body relaxed and I think that is one of the beauty's of Empathy Circle, like it is a safe place."
The thing that I appreciate about empathy circles, is I learned about identify politics, so I am going to jump on Google afterwards and do my research on that.
At some point I felt really hot, like I was a bit stressed to share an idea, and I was like, 'no I'm safe in this Empathy Circle,' and I was able to share what I had to say. And I felt my body relaxed and I think that is one of the beauty's of Empathy Circle, like it is a safe place. And we need more space like that, because that is how we are going to be able to talk to one another and come up with solutions to make a better world.
I found yesterday's empathy circle to be 'very real and very instructive'.
Thanks so much for the opportunity to participate yesterday! I am even more excited about working with you, both individually and in groups.. I found yesterday's empathy circle to be 'very real and very instructive'.
"I wanna give a shout out to the Empathy Tent guys. Great group and really enjoyed my chat tonight. I really do like this idea and the people who run it. Great people and great idea...
Again Edwin, I want you to know I love this empathy tent Idea. I see much progress being made through a program like this that was a genius idea"