Joanna Macy – The Great Turning

24 September 2009

The Findhorn Community was privileged this week to have Joanna Macy join us to present The Work That Reconnects, a workshop for 70 participants from around the world, and then offer a special two-day workshop for the community itself.


One hundred and twenty community members took part in the journey with Joanna, asking ourselves if we are ready to take the next step to be what is required of us, to allow the living intelligence of the earth to come through us at this moment in time.

I found that the journey of this work is an intensely personal one, but paradoxically has the potential to change our shared lives the most. To walk through it begins with deeply experiencing the beauty and interconnection of all life, and then being incredibly vulnerable and willing to face the fact that my existence, and this beautiful life itself, is threatened by how our world is today.

That terrible pain and despair is a step on the way to really being ready to let go of the divisive and destructive values running through our society and to see new possibilities for how we can organise our lives. Finally, and only when I have done all of this, can my intentions and actions truly be part of shaping a new era, The Great Turning, as important a shift in human history as the Agricultural and Industrial Revolutions were in their time.

We, as a human society, have the choice whether these years of climate change, unlimited ‘growth’ based on profit, and destruction of our life systems will result in a great unravelling, or become a great turning. We have the potential to move from an industrial growth society to a life sustaining society, if we accept the gift of the uncertainty we feel and use it to create the new.

During the two days with Joanna and this beloved community I let myself experience again my heart breaking — open. I felt the gift that is each breath and each exquisite person in front of me. I was excited and inspired by seeing with new eyes how we can structure our collective lives together in a new way. I feel determined to give my voice and my hands to activities that will help us all to wake up together and create a sustainable, loving, compassionate, joyful and peaceful world.

Thank you, Joanna, and all people everywhere who put their shoulders to the wheel of The Great Turning – we can’t do it without you.

Eva Ward

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