The Gathering

WHAT

A retreat where we explore how can we can live wisely and well together.

From our food to to our politics, from technology to education, we examine one of life’s most fundamental questions: what can we do to make a wiser world?

WHEN

Due to COVID-19, 2020’s Gathering has been postponed. New dates tbc.

WHERE

La Cheraille, a small farming hamlet near Paris. This natural, beautiful and secluded environment is perfectly suited to the ethos of the week and provides the ideal space for participants to share, experiment and reflect. Read more ›

PARTICIPATE

The event is invite only and is limited in scale to ensure an intimate atmosphere — no more than roughly thirty participants. If would like to participate or know someone who would please get in touch.

Why Wisdom

Neither our society nor our planet are as well as they should be. Greater wisdom is needed both in diagnosis and in finding cures.

We emphasize wisdom because we believe this is about more than finding a quick-fix in technology or politics – it is about finding something deeper within ourselves and our societies.

What we will cover

The week will include meditation and discussions, workshops and storytelling — plus food from the gardens and a late night bonfire.

During the Gathering we will come together to share our vision of Life Itself. It will also be a moment to support each other to fulfil our collective and individual dreams. We will have moments to explore specific areas such as Collective Intelligence, Beyond mind perception play, the Life Itself issue tree, and the road map.

The Gathering is a moment for the mind, heart, soul and body to meet through a powerful shared experience.

We will preserve space in the program to allow for suggestions during the week and we welcome ideas for new topics and activities in advance.

For whom

We want to bring together all kinds of people who have at their heart a deep concern to help improve the world and a desire to do so wisely.

Farmers, technologists, researchers, lawyers, artists, young, old — all are welcome.

We believe this conversation needs to be open and broad so that we may enhance each other understanding by sharing our knowledge and skills.

Workshops

Here are some examples of the practical workshops that will take place during the gathering:

Introduction to Permaculture: The technology of nature.

Ecstatic Dance: Experience sober trans though body and movement.

Storytelling: Story telling around a bonfire.

Perception Play: Re-discover our senses and the world through play.

Sound and body: Connecting human sound with slow movement.

Interactive Painting: Eye gazing, spontaneous play with painting.

Meditation: Follow your breath and watch your thoughts.

Benefits

Exposure to pioneers in fields of Information Economy, Mindful Technology and Cognitive Science.

Insight into how ecological systems can help us reinterpret our role in the world.

Developing communication through play.

Exposure to the uncovering of new paradigms.

Opportunities to build friendships and networks through the sharing of ideas.

Broader understanding of the architecture of coliving and how architecture can foster feelings of belonging and wholeness.

Exploration of meditative practices, ecstatic dance and the life of plants.

Discussions

Here are some examples of the kinds of areas we discuss:

Collective Intelligence:

We’ve created a complex society, in which, it seems, no individual can fully understand what is going on around him. How do we put our heads together more effectively to understand the world we live in and solve problems like global warming?

Renewing the Foundations for Art and Aesthetics:

The enormous concern that the Art World places on novelty and theory would have been foreign to any previous era of human history. Is this a wise cultural innovation that we’ve made? What can we learn from expression of creativity in other societies?

Pragmatic Utopianism:

There is a growing intuition that something is deeply the matter, that, despite so much material progress we are not truly satisfied, happy and at peace. What are our foundational values and views, our big vision and its associated roadmap; and how do we facilitate consensus on these and their implementation in the next fifty to two hundred years?

Open Information:

Information is becoming main thing we make, trade and use. The virtual nature of this new world built on ‘bits’ makes it different from the physical world of bread and land and cars which can only have one user at a time. Because information can be used by many at the same time, it makes a world of open information both possible and desirable — that is a world in which all public information can be openly and freely used, shared and built on.

Life Itself: What did we learn in 2019?

What are the lessons learnt from our various projects undertaken since the last gathering: the London Hub, The LEAP, iMed and the Institute. It is a moment for us to share learnings across our different initiatives and to think of way to go forward as a collective.

The Location – La Cheraille