Invitation to Presence in Action by Louie Gardiner
Louie Gardiner of the Presence in Action Collective writes: “What can I say to open this space sufficiently to give you a flavour – a felt-sense experience – of Presence in Action?
I could share how it found its own becoming. But that would be my spin on the trails and tracelines that find me here today, outwith the community-in-practice which was its sourcing ground. Whatever I write here, you will make your meanings which, without first-person experience of what I am offering, will render your meaning-making somewhat impoverished and skewed.
So, I let the title speak to you in whatever way it does or does not. I invite you to sit on the brink as you gaze at this page. Be with yourself and notice what arises in you as you read these words.
• What are you looking for? Something familiar that you can grasp that might have you breathe a little easier?
• Perhaps your searching is a signal that you are on alert? What are the signs that will generate meaning within you to ‘beware’?
• What if you find nothing on this page that tickles your curiosity?
• What if there is nothing here for your mis-named ‘rational’ mind to grip?
Whatever rises in you will have you tip one way or another… towards this offering… or towards some other item on the menu. And if you feel the urge to move on, I invite you to linger here a little longer – just one moment more – to consider this:
• What urge within you, had you turn your attention to the title of this blog page?
• What had you move your arms to bring your fingers to the keyboard or to swipe across your screen; or move your hand to move your mouse to point and click on the link that brought you here?
I am inviting you into self-centering… even though, at present, you do not have access to the scaffolding that could/would support you to grasp quite what may be going on for you.
Scaffolded by a representation (the P6 Constellation), a simple practice (the Acuity Practice) and embedded knowing (Symmathesic Agency Behaviours), the praxis of Presence in Action illuminates that which is running within us, non-consciously directing what we do and say. With practice, we become ever-more attuned to catching this in the here and now (reflexively) rather than retrospectively (reflectively).
I describe Presence in Action as: the self-centering (reflective-reflexive, receptive-responsive) capacity of individuals to attend to what is present and current in place in space in time. It is experienced and understood as:
o a praxis arising from a fusion of faculties attending to what is present and current;
o a state of Being Becoming arising from attending to what is current in all that is present;
o a person self-centering through the praxis of ≈Presence in Action.
Through self-centering, we find ourselves illuminating and simultaneously transforming whatever is running – shifting our state of being~doing to a state of being~doing~knowing. We come into ‘agreement with ourselves’ and find ourselves naturally expanding back out into our relational realms and wider world, more grounded, self-assured about what we shall (not) do and/or (say).
This naturally inclusional, process(ing) dynamic is consistent with what Brian Swimme, the cosmologist, says of the cosmos: that it centres in on itself, drawing in energy, and in the process, finds itself expanding. It has no grand visions; no precision planning; only a perpetual state of becoming.
Presence in Action is akin to this. Attending. Responding. Becoming. It is us, in a state of becoming, arising from personal, humble particulars to which we give our fullest attention. It really is so very simple. It’s just not so very easy, because the only consciously active step we can take is the commitment to attend to what is current in all that is present, here and now within each of us, in the context of what is in sway between and beyond us relationally, in the wider world. Our responding and becoming is not quite under the control we imagine ourselves to have.
If, on communing with these few words, you find your urge tipping you into joining our AR+ Gathering session on March 7th, be ready to lay down what you already know and know how to do. Come ready to play with new knowing becoming between us!
We will follow what shows up, which may have us touching upon any number of ‘no-things’: Acuity. Admittance. Agility. Fluency. Artistry. Responsibility releasing response-ability. Natural Inclusionality ~ complex adaptive/living systems ~ primal animation ~ abduction ~ Living Theory Action Research… and a whole bunch of other possibilities!”
Resources & links:
Book chapter: Presence in Action Collective becoming
PIA Collective: Presence in Action Collective website