People from all over the world are gathering at Findhorn this week for a New Stories Summit, which promises to be a deep inquiry. Why are more and more people turning towards the imagery and trajectory of story? What is it about this meme that is attracting energy at this time?
My view, as usual, is pretty simple. When we’re living in a story that’s working out pretty well, mostly we are focused on living our lives, doing more of the same and enjoying the results. It’s mostly when the story begins to pinch a bit — when it no longer seems like it fits or feels good — that we start to think about the story we are living in and begin to ask what else is possible.
The stories we live in are the ones we find or make up to help us find meaning in our lives. The summit website offers this framing:
As we change our story, we change our world.
We humans find our way by story. Our stories shape us, hold us and give meaning to our lives. Every so often it becomes clear that a prevailing story is no longer serving. Now is such a time.
If we do not create a positive, realistic picture of the future, we will not live into it.
Our modern world faces unprecedented challenges and the increasing fragility of once robust systems – social, economic, religious, political and ecological. This visibly accelerating disintegration of the story lived since the industrial revolution can feel overwhelming. Caught in this apparent helplessness, contemporary narratives of the future oscillate between blind denial and apocalyptic devastation. Neither will help us live the transformational Great Turning that is still – though maybe only just – within our grasp.
Our Summit is designed to support the emergence of a coherent new story for humanity and to produce practical, collaborative ways to live this new story.
The summit is beginning to bring together different resources on Story. Duane Elgin’s Great Transition Story work, done jointly with New Stories, is one clear example of the formative power of stories. The summit is bringing together a range of resources on new stories at their New Story HUB