I just offered the following responses to a survey from The Center for Spiritual and Social Transformation concerning their four Transform: Spirituality and Social Change sessions that were held last month.
1. How did you hear about the Transform workshop? Please be specific.
2. What were you hoping to gain from the course?
I was primarily looking for opportunities to engage in dialog with peers who respect one another as equals about how we might develop user-friendly, easily replicated tools to support one another in our spiritual growth and help build a national movement to impact national policy – that is, practice what we preach.
3. How well did the course meet these hopes/expectations?
Not at all. I found the first two sessions to be too top-heavy with lectures. They were more like a “class” than an interactive, problem-solving “workshop.” They were too much in the head and not enough from the heart. During the first two classes, when I posed a question and offered a comment, I felt that Liza did not respond to what I said. During the breaks, I engaged in dialog with others about statements they made with which I resonated, but no one did the same with me. As people walked around during breaks, I experienced little eye contact. There was no email dialog during the week. When I emailed one participant about another event and told her, “I’m particularly interested in user-friendly methods that activists could use to support one another in that work — methods that could be easily replicated and spread. AA is a suggestive example. If you have thoughts or experience along that line, I’d like to hear them,” I received no reply. So, all in all, I concluded that I was unlikely to find an opportunity to collaborate on my pressing concern through the class and decided not to sacrifice more income by participating during work hours. So I did not go to the third or fourth class.
4. Evaluate the following statements.
The instructor presented the material in an engaging and accessible way. Agree
The course material was helpful. Agree
The discussion was helpful. Agree
The course helped me in my work. Agree
The course helped clarify my vocation. Agree
I made valuable connections with other course participants. Disagree
5. How was the course most helpful to you?
It reassured me that there are others who want to work on their spiritual growth and are willing to acknowledge their weaknesses and mistakes in order to do so.
6. What could have strengthened your experience?
A more practical focus on developing and sharing tools that could be used to build a national movement committed to turning our nation into a compassionate community.
7. What kinds of workshops would you like to see in the future?
Workshops that facilitate speaking from the heart with peers who respect one another as equals and explore how we might develop user-friendly, easily replicated tools to support one another in our spiritual growth and help build a national movement to impact national policy – that is, practice what we preach.
8. What class formats would work best for you in the future?
Half-day on the weekend