Living in Harmony

A series of free workshops taking place in the UK, facilitated by Gill Coombs.

Gill Coombs is a coach, facilitator and mediator with a love of the natural world who is travelling around the UK this summer running free workshops to explore the following themes:

The workshops will include working in pairs and small group discussions, time for individual reflection, some outdoor activities and a little theoretical input. The aim is to provide a space for people to explore the four themes as individuals and as a group. There’ll also be some time dedicated to how people can carry forward their inspirations and insights from the day - the aim is to help people make a difference!

Day workshops take place from 09:30-16;00 approximately. At some venues you’ll be able to buy lunch, while others are arranging a ‘bring and share’ lunch. Please contact the local organiser if you would like more details or have other questions relating to a specific venue. Gill is happy to answer any questions about the workshop itself. Please ring her on 07729 331676.

Reasons for embarking on this project by Gill Coombs

I believe that all life on earth is interconnected - earth is life. I believe that when we hurt something else or someone else, we hurt ourselves. I believe that we have become disconnected from our past as a species - we have lost touch with our natural selves and many of us live at deep division from the rest of the world and often at deep division with others and ourselves.

There has always been conflict, and nothing has ever been perfect, but there is a lot of evidence to show that some of the world’s ‘poorest’ people are the happiest and healthiest on earth. These are not people who live in modern poverty, but those indigenous peoples who are still connected to the world, each other and themselves.

I believe that many of us are unhappy, or disconnected, because we cannot live our vocation. Some of us may have lost touch with our own vocation, and others may know it perfectly well, but today’s society doesn’t enable us to fulfil it.

My own vocation is increasingly emerging as one of enabling others to live more natural lives - in whatever way that means for them: whether it’s reconnecting with nature, living more in accordance with their own values, discovering their own innate potential or relating more consciously with others.

I believe that we can come more fully to our natural lives through qualities such as awareness, compassion, respect and authenticity. And I believe that somewhere we each hold our own answers - and that sometimes we need a little help, or the right space and company, to help us discover them. Whilst nothing has ever been perfect, I believe that through becoming more fully our natural selves there is abundant potential for joy, creativity and wellbeing. I also believe that through helping ourselves, we help someone else or something else.

I am looking forward to running this series of workshop on Living in Harmony and wish to thank all the local communities and individuals who have responded so fantastically with offers of help - finding venues and publicising the workshops, as well as with generous offers of accommodation, local tours and a foot massage to name but a few!

Harmony Workshops - dates and venues

DateVenueAfter the eventContact Details
11 JulCwm Ricket, Old Hall, Llanidloes SY18 6PTReportGwen Prince
01686 411128
14 JulMoorfoot Old Farmhouse, Penrith CA10 2EPSal Cawley
Walks for Women
01768 891464
15 Jul (evening)Galgael, 15 Fairley Street, Govan, Glasgow G51 2SNTam McGarvey
0141 427 3070
17 JulMeet at the Post Office, Kilmartin, Lochgilphead, Argyll PA31 8RNWoody Milne
07900 473493
19 Jul (evening)
20 Jul
Friends Meeting House, Kirkgate Nr Settle BD24 9DXAnn Ambrose
01729 822809
22 Jul (evening)1 Forts Buildings, Waterloo Rd, Kelbrook, Nr Skipton BB18 6UBNuala Eden
01282 842153
24 Jul
The Memorial Hall, Pickering YO18 1AA
(as part of ‘Connect For Life’ conference)
Janice Every
01751 476128
31 JulThe Zoo Cafe, Hull HU5 3ABPatrick Crabtree
01482 642163
3 AugTrinity Centre, Eastgate, Louth LN11 8DJBiff Vernon
01507 358413
5 AugYoga Studio, Gravel Pit Cottages, High Toynton LN9 6NNAlison Bell
01507 526591
7 AugAbbey Access Centre, Arboretum Lodge, Lincoln LN2 5HUSandie Stratford
01522 528477
8 Aug • 09:45Biddestone Village HallHelen Barbrook
01249 661353
14 AugPlough Arts Centre, Great Torrington EX38 8HQLeonie Grey
01884 861348
22 Aug • 09:30 for 09:45 -15:45Wilcot Village Hall near PewseyJane Brown
07804 857938

Reports from the workshops

11 Jul 2010 • Llanidloes

11 Jul 2010 Llanidloes

The first workshop took place in Michele and Chris' beautiful barn at Hafren herbs deep in the welsh hills near Llanidloes. The sun came out for long enough to enable the group to spend some time outside connecting with nature, and there were many lively and contentious debates during the day about broad-ranging issues such as whether and how we can eat fish in a way that’s sustainable, and the degree to which we can or should influence others thinking on issues we feel strongly about. Gwen Prince and her husband David put me up for two nights and were thoughtful, interesting and generous hosts - I couldn't have asked for a better start to my journey.

Gill Coombs, 12 Jul 2010

Photo credit: Sharing lunch at the first workshop

14 Jul 2010 • Penrith

14 Jul 2010 Penrith

The second workshop was held at the lovely restored farmhouse of Sal Cawley, who runs ‘Walks for Women’. The house is full of beautiful objects, including the ceramic artwork of Sal’s late partner Josie.

We were just four participants, which gave us a very special opportunity to discuss our concerns about the Earth, our fellow species and our communities in depth. It was also a warm and supportive space in which we could usefully explore individual issues that get in the way of us living in ways more congruent with our values. There were several commitments to action at the end of the day.

The highlight for me came out of a discussion about how we can influence others without ‘hectoring’ - by enthusing!

Gill Coombs, 15 Jul 2010

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