How to Run a SPLASH Group
SPLASH is a peer-based system for small groups who want to explore the idea of a ‘spirit-led’ holistic life. I suggest SPLASH groups should be formed of either 4, 5 or 6 people and then run for 4, 5 or 6 weeks respectively. Groups can run much longer than this but the initial commitment works best when it is for a shorter period of time – mainly because it is a goal that is more easy to achieve and finish.
Form the group and agree on the day and time of meeting (easier said than done from my experience in the Findhorn community but persistence will get you there!) Best to stick to the same day and time every week. Meetings will ideally be in each member’s house or dwelling, changing every week to a new host and venue. The host can then provide some refreshments when it is their turn. This peer-system keeps the costs down to a minimum and can make attendance free for participants (except for the small costs of providing venue and refreshments on your turn). The first groups were charged £5 towards this website but that is no longer necessary. Alternatively you could set a charge for the group and put the money to an agreed use afterwards – a group meal out or to a good cause or whatever. Putting money down helps people to commit (or so I am advised).
There are 3 roles to be taken up for every meeting.
- Host to provide venue and refreshments
- Facilitator to keep an eye on times and to make sure each stage of the meeting is completed.
- Group member who ‘works’ – presents their material for feedback and suggestions.
Rotate the roles so that everyone does everything just once. Members can miss a maximum of one meeting in the cycle providing this is a week when they don’t have a role. However ideally each member should commit to and attend all the meetings in a cycle. Host and facilitator can be the same person in any week but the member who works should not be facilitator (but could be the host).
Each meeting has three sections with a refreshment break.
- A group meditation. Facilitator to keep time and end meditation by speaking or with a gong or sounding bowl. Suggest 15 mins for this. Use meditation techniques of your choice and don’t just close your eyes and hope for the best! Not got a meditation technique? Research!
- A group sharing. Each member shares, ideally for the same length of time. Suggest that sharing should be about your emotional life rather than a list of things done in the week. “I statements” are best, naturally. Suggest 45 mins roughly for this section
Refreshments and break. Suggest 15 mins.
- The member who ‘works’ is invited to share their material. If you are doing SPLASH for the first time I suggest that material is about your current holistic practice. You can use the ‘current practice’ and ‘goal setting’ sheets provided or present the material in your own way and style. You can also ask for feedback from group members if you choose. Suggest 30 to 40 minutes for this section.
At the end of the meeting there can be a little time – say 10 mins to work out venue, transport and roles for the next meeting.
The meeting should be around 2 to 2.5 hours. The facilitator should keep meetings from running over two and a half hours unless it is by prior agreement.
SPLASH groups could be formed for any mutually agreed business that related to the topic of spirit-led holistic living. For instance – I have often thought it would be a good idea to have a group look at Deepak Chopra’s 7 Laws of Spiritual Success with a 7-member group over 7 weeks but I have not done this yet. I would envisage that each member would ‘work’ on one of these laws each week and present their findings and get feedback.
In a closely-knit community like Findhorn, I would hope that by use of an email news group, opportunities could be suggested by one group that could be attended by any SPLASH member of another group. For instance one member may have an interest in dance as part of their holistic routines and offer to facilitate a session in a rented space and make it open to any SPLASH member who wanted to come. Or a member might suggest a walk in the country and make it open to others. Any opportunity that will encourage a holistic lifestyle could be created and facilitated and offered.
The power of the group is a great support when it comes to personal practice and self-help. (“When two or more are gathered…”) Peer-based groups have had huge impact in 12-step programmes and co-counselling. The ‘attunement’ system – meditation, sharing and business has been a staple for Findhorn Foundation work departments for decades. As a system, attunements at Findhorn are tried and tested, and via SPLASH can be extended to aspects of holistic living rather than just a work situation. SPLASH can help to unite the spiritual basis of Findhorn with the collective wisdom of decades of the personal development movement. Besides which it is a very good way to meet and get to know your community members on a deeper level.
SPLASH outside Findhorn
If you live away from Findhorn, you can still set up your own SPLASH group and get some resources from this website (and add your own input and findings to the discussion). First step would be to find four other people locally who understand the principles of spirit-led holism, have a meditation practice and see the value of personal sharing and working in a group. They don’t need to have been to Findhorn and have done Experience Week (though it helps if they have, obviously). If you haven’t got enough people locally you could recruit distant members and hold meetings in your own language via Skype or FaceTime or any instant video connection programme.
SPLASH Group Pages
- SPLASH Group Home
- How to SPLASH
- Core Content
- Notes for Sharings
- Notes for Goal Setting
- Theory – Why Splash
- Holistic Education