“For centuries men have been meeting and sitting in circle.” I have heard that statement, or variations on it, many times over the last few years. It is a statement that rings true to me to the depth of my being, as though it is touching into something that is at our core.
What has caused me to hear those words uttered so many times? Because I have been sitting in circle with men for the last three years. They are spoken most often when new men venture forth, as that is how it feels, to make this new commitment, to explore this ancient ritual. It might not be the call of “an ancient ritual” which brings men to a circle. I would say that more often than not, it is a search. Something is not working in their lives and all the solutions that they have turned to so far have, at some point, hit a dead end….or more simply, something is just missing in their lives.
I would not be so brash as to suggest that a man sitting in a circle with other men will solve all his problems. However, I would say that their is a power emergent, like tapping into something ancient, when a group of men meet to share and discuss what is on their mind and in their hearts, all held within the spirit of a circle that is respecting confidence and trust.
This journey for me has taken me to a “Men’s Mentoring” circle in the local jail. The proof of the pudding is in eating it, and in the space that my fellow facilitators and I hold there, I have seen the transformation of so many men. It feels like a gift to be able to be there.