Eden is a Conversation

Barry Lopez talks of Eden as a Conversation. What a wonderful metaphor. Note to self 1: Have co-evolutionary conversations with sunlight, birds and flowers more often. Note to self 2: Remember that giving and receiving care and attention is co-evolutionary conversing.

"But Eden, we should be at pains to point out, is not a place. Eden
is a conversation. It is the conversation of the human with the Divine.
And it is the reverberations of that conversation that create a sense
of place. It is not a thing, Eden, but a pattern of relationships, made
visible in conversation. To live in Eden is to live in the midst of
good relations, of just relations scrupulously attended to,
imaginatively maintained through time. Altogether we call this beauty."

"We cannot save things. Things pass away. We can only attend to
relationships, to the relationships between things. It is here that we
see the most beautiful images we are capable of apprehending or
imagining—the relationship between a mother and a child, the racket of
sunlight on pooling water, a bird alighting on a limb."

From Barry Lopez, Eden as a Conversation


  1. Wow, Samantha! What a fantastic reference. Thanks for this link.

    I am listening to the echoes of one line you quoted above in particular: “… it is the reverberations of that conversation that create a sense of place”.

    Of course! The reverberations of a conversation…

    These are the ripples that follow all true ‘meetings’ … inner reverberations that continue to bring up insights and deeper understandings in us, and outer reverberations that take the seeds from one conversation on to another.

    What is created from these reverberations is not just a sense of place, precious though that is, but also in some tangible way, like weaving the threads of a vibrating field, we are creating reality together, co-evolving futures.

    I’ve just come back from World Café Europe’s first gathering, where on the first day the team co-hosted cafés with more than 750 people from the city of Dresden.

    I can’t help but wonder what the reverberations from that conversation will be, along with all the others that are going on with others like us right now, all over the world.

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