Evolving Edge

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While honoring its origins in the teachings of Joanna Macy and her colleagues, the Work That Reconnects is an evolving body of work. Evolving Edge features articles on new theory, practices and other developments in the Work That Reconnects. There is a current focus on re-visioning the Work with the aims of de-colonization,* integrating a deeper anti-oppression framing and analysis, embracing marginalized perspectives and considerations, and generally making the Work safer and more relevant for non-dominant groups.

*We are using the term “De-colonization” to mean the pursuit of liberation, reclaiming mind and heart from the legacy of colonialism, i.e. personal, interpersonal, and institutional domination over people and the natural world. This process demands that we acknowledge historic and ongoing traumas from colonization, genocide, white supremacy, and systemic racism.  It requires actions accountable to people of color by creating and securing structural changes that insure equity and right relationship.

March 2024

Undoing Oppression and Cultural Appropriation

by Belinda Griswold
Belinda offers counsel for facilitators in creating inclusive, welcoming spaces for everyone.

September 2023

Why I Resist: A Letter to Facilitators

by Priyal Shah
Priyal addresses an uncomfortable truth: the Work That Reconnects has inadvertently created spaces of marginalization, exclusion, and oppression.

March 2023

Reconnecting with Identity: Locating commonality in intersections

by Michael Wellmann
The author explores how activists can expand the intersections of our identities to find more common ground while also continuing to embrace our individual diversity.

September 2022

Ancestral Deep Ecology in the Americas

Ecología profunda ancestral en las Américas
by Adrián Villaseñor Galarza
There is a complex and interconnected hybrid spectrum between the “North” and the “South” of the Americas; it is imperative for industrialized citizens to wake up to the ways in which we contribute to oppressive dynamics.

When the Work hurts

Cuando el Trabajo duele
by Silvia Di Blasio
It may sound like a paradox, but the Work That Reconnects sometimes disconnects and hurts.  Spanish & English

Working in the trenches: the Work That Reconnects in the refugee reception context of Greece

by Tina Lygdopoulou
Offering the Work That Reconnects under the extremely challenging conditions of a refugee camp in Greece. Greek & English

March 2022

bell hooks and a Liberating Eco-feminism

by Brooke Kuhnhausen
Reading bell hooks’ words again, I feel struck and expanded by the power of her vision.

Sisters in Spirit: Haudenosaunee Influence on Early American Feminists

book review by Martha O'Hehir
Sisters in Spirit
by Sally Roesch Wagner describes how early feminists and suffragettes received their clear vision of what an egalitarian and cooperative society looks like from their neighbors, the Haudenosaunee.

September 2021

Prescribed Fires

Paintings by Elsa Muñoz
Four exquisite paintings of controlled burns, with the artist's comments.

March 2021

The End of the World, for Whom?

by AJ Hudson
An Afrofuturist & Afropessimist Counter Perspective on Climate Apocalypse

September 2020

No posts found.

March 2020

Reflections on Attending to Power, Privilege and Oppression Dynamics in Work That Reconnects Spaces

by Aravinda Ananda
A growing edge for me with my Work That Reconnects facilitation is learning about how power, privilege, and oppression are operating in group spaces.

White Space: A Letter

by Kurt A. Kuhwald
This letter explores the problem of white space and ponders how activist movements might be recreated as truly inclusive spaces.

August 2019

No posts found.

February 2019

Exploring Regenerative Livelihoods through The Work That Reconnects

by Silvia Di Blasio
Livelihood as a social justice issue; going beyond "having a job" to finding right livelihood that furthers the Great Turning.

Going Deeper: Anti-Oppression for Facilitators

by Aravinda Ananda
Land Acknowledgements--The first installment of a series of articles exploring first steps and how to go deeper with anti-oppression approaches in facilitation.

July 2018

The Intersection of Racism and Environmental Crises

Interview with Carl Anthony
Carl Anthony, an elder in the civil rights movement, speaks about how to respond to the interlocking challenges of racism, classism, poverty, and environmental crises.

Breakthrough Communities and the Work That Reconnects

Interview with Dr. Paloma Pavel by Molly Brown
Dr. Pavel shares how the Breakthrough Communities Project has drawn on and expanded the understandings and practices of the Work That Reconnects.

How the Interhelp Community Guidelines Came to Be

Story by Paula Hendrick
Paula relates how the Interhelp Community Guidelines came into being and shares them with the Work That Reconnects community.

Non-doable Requests and Shifting Long-term Behavior

by Aravinda Ananda
One of the things that has particularly intrigued me is how to support people in shifting long-term ingrained behavior. This article offers some reflections on that challenge from experiences over the past year.

February 2018

Choosing the Story We Want for Our World

by Molly Brown and Joanna Macy
An expanded version of the “3 Stories” described in 
Coming Back to Life (2014 edition), p. 5 , with a longer and more inclusive historical perspective.

Recommendations on Anti-Oppression Work within the Work That Reconnects

by Joanna Macy
Joanna shares her recommendations for bringing anti-oppression perspectives and practices into the Work That Reconnects.

As European Americans, Healing Our Relationship with the Ancestors

by Kaia Svien
The course described here, “As European Americans, Healing Our Relationship with the Ancestors: moving towards personal and collective wholeness” is rooted in the powerful state of consciousness, Deep Time.

August 2017

Extended Part 1: WTR Through a Lens of Person of Color (POC) Identity, and Intra-personal, Inter-personal, and Group Dynamics

by Erica Peng
A perspective on my own journey of identity and personal and professional development, about how powerful WTR has been for my own process of reconnection, as well as how great the opportunity is for WTR’s continued evolution.

Full transcript of conversation between Patricia St. Onge, Ann Marie Davis and Aravinda Ananda

Aravinda: Good afternoon to this conversation between Patricia St. Onge, Ann Marie Davis and Aravinda Ananda. Let’s take a moment for each of us to introduce ourselves. Ann Marie: My name is Ann Marie Davis and I’m a writer. I

Zenju Earthlyn Manuel in conversation with Ann Marie Davis

by Ann Marie Davis and Zenju Earthlyn Manuel
Available as both an audio recording of the full interview, or edited excerpts in writing, this conversation between ordained Zen Buddhist priest Zenju Earthlyn Manuel and author Ann Marie Davis covers much ground ranging through tenderness, embodiment and oneness, anger, peace, practice, suffering, fear and thoughts on cultural appropriation.

Coming Back to Black Life

by Ratasha Elise
Over time, it became clear to me that it wasn’t so much that BIPOC was missing the WTR, as it was that the WTR and the broader community surrounding it, was missing us, as well as the awarenesses and frameworks that would create space and safety for us.

A Story of Whimsical Lightning

by Jaq Nguyen Victor
2017 has been a year of embracing the flavors and textures of me that stray from the stereotypical image of a therapist. And I owe immense gratitude to the Work That Reconnects (WTR) for guiding my path towards self-celebration. I am the Founder and Director of Dig & Demand (D&D)—a radical training program for queer trans 1st, 1.5, 2nd generation diasporic Vietnamese artists. Its mission is to dig deeply and demand daringly for the collective threading of our resilience.

A personal African Identity told to practitioners of the WTR

by Wilson Riles
I feel called to uncover what history took from me: a solid sense of my ancestors that goes as far back in history as will give me deep knowing of full connection and identity to humanity in all of humanity’s splendor and degradation.

Two Peoples, One Fire

by Patricia St. Onge
My daughter Karissa shared a Facebook post that expressed frustration about the outpouring of support for Standing Rock that looks different from the support for BLM. I understand the frustration.  I also know that we romanticize Indigenous people and lifeways in much the same way that we demonize Blackness.

Guest Editors In Conversation: Patricia St. Onge, Ann Marie Davis and Aravinda Ananda

by Patricia St. Onge, Ann Marie Davis and Aravinda Ananda
A conversation between the three guest editors about why they said yes to editing this special issue.


by Signature MiMi

Othering and Belonging: An Embodied Spiritual Practice

by john a. powell
Can we live in a world where all life is respected and all human beings are afforded the dignity and respect they deserve?  Can we, as human beings, be humane beings?  Can we create a circle of human concern where all humans are inside the circle and all life is respected?  Can we have a we without a them?

May 2017

Poem: All Around Me

by Leonard Perry

Pathways Toward Wholeness: Calling in White Folks

by Aryeh Shell
To live up to its promise of reconnecting us with each other and the Earth, the Work that Reconnects must center the voices of people of color and the systemic and historical realities of white supremacy, capitalism and colonization. We must recognize that the Great Unraveling and Business as Usual have been going on for a very long time.

Finding Community Post-Election

by Beth Remmes
A few weeks after the election, my yoga teacher and owner of a studio in Georgia, approached me and said, “Beth, I have to do something. People are crying in class. I am having a hard time getting through classes myself. What can we offer these people who are in so much pain?” We scheduled a workshop for the first Saturday in December and named it after the book, "Active Hope: How to Face the Mess We're in without Going Crazy."

Waking up White in the Work That Reconnects

by Maya Jones
When the online course White Awake was offered to Work That Reconnects facilitators, I eagerly enrolled. Now, halfway through the course I find myself challenged to think not only about how I facilitate the Work That Reconnects, but how I live my life.

November 2016

Lessons & Reflections from Radical Dharma

By Aravinda Ananda
What a time to be alive! So many skeletons are coming out of the systems of oppression closets and being made more visible in the public arena, which has been mostly silent for centuries in order to maintain power.

De-colonizing the Work That Reconnects

interviews with Aravinda Ananda, Belinda Griswold, Mutima Imani, and Joseph Rotella.
What inspired me to make the call for everyone to gather to think about decolonising our practice in the Work That Reconnects is that over the past four years or so, it had been gradually dawning on me just how very exclusive a lot of the work that we have been doing is.