I’ve been racking my brain for the past few weeks about what sessions would make sense for unMonastery at this years’ LOTE4, given the subject, given where unMonastery is currently at - given that it’s taking place in the location of the first unMonastery and coming in it’s wake. It’s difficult to know what’s appropriate, what’s essential, what can take us forward to the next step!
But as Alberto has prompted, there is obviously a desperate need for reflection and action - so I wanted to get a post going to discuss this. Certainly we will live the unMonastery, be it lite or not, @Bembo_Davies and @katalin have stepped up to lead on this - with details to follow.
I’ve shared below some initial ideas for sessions - please suggest others and tweak these but lets aim to solidify at least 3 sessions by Friday, latest.
In January 2015, we will host the first of a series of events; large scale unMonastery Summits, designed to grow and build on what we have learnt - in each instance we will live variations of the unMonastery life, quick sprints on rules from the rule, summits will act as labs for revised iterations on the protocol.
But going global isn’t easy, when we started unMonastery the sense was that property and land was beyond our reach, having now completed the first iteration of the never ending prototype - we find ourselves with a glut of offers and possibilities - from existing monasteries, to Greek land, buildings and small settlements in Spain. The issue of expansion is no longer a material one but a capacity one, who will lead future unMonasteries? Where will they draw their brethren? What are the unseen stumbling blocks of growth?
This and many questions pervade the future development of the model. We say 200 years but do we know what the first 5 looks like? Should we rush to start more? Is the unMonastery a slow growth model? Should we limit the total number to roll out? What are the permission mechanisms needed to help others initiate? Is there any element of the model that’s centralised?
The questions role on and there are many we must face if we are to commit to the claims we’ve made.
The Materan School of the unMonastery:
Prior to our departure from Matera, we declared in earnest that the city be our natural birth place, that any continuation of the unMonastery be unthinkable without the location being the bedrock of our 200 year march - but how can we return? And what in our absence have we neglected?
LOTE4 presents a unique opportunity to interrogate and evaluate what we did in Matera, how we might do better - but most importantly it puts everyone in the room who is capable of bringing the unMonastery back to the city, and assessing if the deep desire to do so is enough to ensure it becomes reality.
unMonastery in-a-box, does it work?:
From the start we stood in the shadow of giants, firstly the monastic path we drew on, secondly the hacker spaces we’d learnt from. Replication was always the goal and we presumed the tool kit could be conceived of replica tools from that which we knew; the book of mistakes, the draft protocol, a wiki full of learnings and pattern languages, a card deck to hold bind it together and a talking piece to ensure all voices might be heard.
But what state is this in? Where did we get to and is what we have even legible? This session would focus on interrogating our work, bringing in outside but invested voices to perform an autopsy on our work and feed back to us the results of their post-mortem examination.
It goes without saying that there will be a series of public sessions detailed on the LOTE4 program, but like the life of unMonastery, much of our work will be processed over the dinner table and in clandestine night time gatherings in the caves of Matera. But no one should forget that LOTE presents us with a special opportunity to progress our work in the presence of others, an opportunity that cannot be missed.