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Compassionate Listening in Polarizing Times: Practicing Challenging Political Conversations with our Hearts Open and our Wisdom Intact

Oct 7, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - Oct 28, 2021 @ 6:30 pm PDT

$125 – $250

Thursdays, Oct 7 – 28, 2021 (Oct 7, 14, 21 & 28)

4pm – 6:30pm Pacific / 7pm – 9:30pm Eastern


Living in a time of accelerating change and intense political polarization—and with fears of politically motivated violence in the background—we need skills, stamina, and practices to foster healthy engagement. If you are engaging in political conversations with family, friends, community members or on social media, this series will provide support and tools to maximize your effectiveness.

In a safe and courageous container we will use all of the tools of Compassionate Listening to help each other stay grounded, and focus our energy on having challenging conversations: cultivating compassion for ourselves and others; developing the fair witness; respecting ourselves and others; listening and speaking from the heart.

Sourced in heart connections and deep values, we will practice how to keep our democracy vital and heal our collective traumas one conversation at a time.

We will provide a ‘pre-session’ orientation called Taste of Compassionate Listening for those who are new to the practice or who need a review on Wednesday, July 28  from 11 am to 1:30 PDT (2 to 4:30 EDT).  (Stay tuned for a possible additional session of Taste on September 30. ) Then we will meet for four sessions, all on Thursdays, from 4 to 6:30 pm PDT (7 to 9:30 EDT), October 7, 14, 21, 28

Each class is highly interactive; you will get to observe role plays and then dive in to practice with partners in the group based on issues you are dealing with. Each class will have a lot time for reflection, and hopefully, new insights.

We offer a pay what you can afford structure beyond the $100 to register, which you will decide at the end of the series.  The higher end supports the ongoing offering for all to participate. We don’t want anyone who earnestly wants to attend to miss out because of finances: you can contact [email protected] to explore other options.

Your facilitators:

Susan Partnow, M.A., has catalyzed social transformation for 30+ years from Africa to Guatemala, Cuba to Japan and India. Co-founder of Conversation Cafes, Let’s Talk America, Global Citizen Journey and Seattle Restorative Justice, Susan especially enjoys transforming conflict using Restorative Circles, Open Space, World Café and Appreciative Inquiry. She is a mediator, facilitator, and coach. Author of Everyday Speaking for All Occasions and co-contributor to Practicing the Art of Compassionate Listening. Passionately committed to inter-cultural understanding, peacemaking and community building, Susan deeply believes we can and must ‘listen our way to wholeness’ to find our essential humanity through connection, wise co-creation, and dialogue.

Rachel Eryn Kalish, M.C. has over 30 years as a certified compassionate listening facilitator, mediator, and trainer in the field of conflict transformation.  She works on multiple levels: interpersonal, interpersonal, organizational, political and spiritual, balancing visionary thinking with highly sensitive attention to details that can deepen or impede trust and collaboration. She was the facilitator in the pioneering Year of Civil Discourse which changed the conversation about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the Bay Area. Her life’s mission is to bring conflict transformation tools and spiritual practice into our world to increase our capacity for loving, honest, rigorous conversations while maintaining respectful, caring connections.


Oct 7, 2021 @ 4:00 pm PDT
Oct 28, 2021 @ 6:30 pm PDT
$125 – $250
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Event Contact Information
[email protected]


online Zoom (link sent with registration)
WA 98107-4352 United States + Google Map