Create a Generative Conflict Ritual

Map   Step 1    Step 2   Step 3    Step 4    Step 5    Step 6      Step 7

Step 6

Create a Generative Conflict Ritual


Step 6 on the Generative Conflict Map is about creating transformative community ritual as a way to be with conflict. Rather than creating community accountability processes as kinder versions of legal proceedings, co-created ritual makes space where conflict can become generative instead of punitive. We can use our understanding of ritual and its transformative power, and our practice working with ritual, to co-create a ritual appropriate to the scale and scope of any particular conflict. It is important to hire someone to lead this co-creation who is an experienced celebrant of such rituals.

Basic elements of co-created ritual include:

Opening / invocation

     – Calling in guides, honoring participants, setting intention for gathering, statement of hope

Transformative process

     – Threshold-crossing activity takes those present from one state/way of life/understanding/identity into another, offering new perspectives, honoring and supporting emergent identities, marking changed relationships. This is space for magical and unpredictable change. New insights and commitments can unfold.

Closing / commitment to change

     – Harvesting the results of the transformative process, weaving it with the opening intention and hope (or the disappointment of our hope), setting intentions and accountability structures for new commitments, honoring what has been experienced, thanking guides, ending the ritual.

Ritual technologies might include clowning, theatrical re-enactment of “watershed moments” where things went wrong, blessings, music, time for participants to share prepared statements or spontaneous offerings, special food, sacred objects. There are many scales of conflict, and a ritual structure can be adapted to various scales.