Yesterday, I walked 8 miles with my favorite animal companion, Tara, my daughter’s dog and my daughter and a dog trainer. Tara was walking calmly by my side after having had a “Galileo Moment”. “Oh the world doesn’t revolve around me?” This extraordinary dog trainer also was shaking up my world as well. I watched how his communication and I mean CLEAR communication with another species was creating astonishing results. Dogs, like wolves, like people have specific ( though different) communication needs. A dog needs to know who is in charge or else they have to be the protector and sheriff if no one is the clear pack leader. Once they are relieved of being in charge they are capable of extraordinary well mannered and cooperative behavior with humans. These dogs offer humans amazing gifts.
So, how does this relate to Tribe? It seems that we all have our unique animal aspects. We all have a wild nature; a predator like focus and a prey like receptivity. We all have the potential to connect to our “animal ally;” to examine the unhealthy parts and the healthy ones.
As we sit in circle week after week we often feel this same epiphany that my grand-dog is discovering, ” I am not the center of the universe. I don’t have to do it alone”. As people value the connection and intimacy with others the capacity for empathy is growing as is the ability to name essential needs and feelings.
Basically, intertwining intimacy and cultivating each others autonomy is supporting remarkable personal transformation. Investigating and becoming more familiar with our shadows, our primal nature as well as our deepest dreams and aspirations has some surprising consequences. In this tribe work we find over and over again, unexpected gifts.