We are finite creatures. Total knowledge and predictive power will always be beyond us. We have to accept that we can never know the universe fully and totally. We must learn to live with a measure of uncertainty, paradox and ambiguity. We must acknowledge that vital pieces of information may always be missing. That is the price we pay for entering fully into the life of the cosmos, for becoming participants in nature instead of mere observers.
F. David Peat
A Message from the Director and Associate Director
Pari, as are all villages, towns and cities in Italy and beyond, is silent. We stay in and around our houses. Not just to keep ourselves safe but to keep our communities and societies safe. We normally give no thought to how fragile is the complex network that sustains our life. Until the day a little creature of microscopic dimension, one of the most elementary forms of life, erupts into our well organized world and confronts us with the essential truth of our frailty, of our impermanence, of our being just a link in the great chain of life.
It is a powerful lesson, if we are open to learning it. We miss it if we respond with fear or with tightening up. The challenge to our lives brings the opportunity to appreciate the preciousness and uniqueness of every moment. By recognizing that we are all equal in facing the impermanence of our existence, we are given the opportunity to rediscover the bonds of love that connect us all, family, friends and beyond. May that be the gift of this difficult time. May we remember it beyond the emergency!
Shantena Sabbadini and Godelieve Spaas
Conversations with Friends of the Pari Center: Godelieve Spaas
A new feature is our Conversations with Friends of the Pari Center. Our first interview is with Godelieve Spaas from Avians University in the Netherlands where she is Professor of New Economy. She has been coming to the Pari Center since 2007 and has now bought a house in the village. In 2017 she became Associate Director of the Pari Center. She talks about her first encounters with David Peat and outlines her priorities and hopes for the future of the Center: 1. Weekend Among Friends (the fourth annual meeting takes place in May) which is built on the idea of Gentle Action. 2. Bringing her research group to the ‘alchemical vessel’ of Pari where together people from many disciplines ‘are able to assemble our differences and weave something new out of it.’ 3. Meetings between Europeans and Indigenous people to discuss the big issues we are facing and help find solutions.
PARI PERSPECTIVES 3
Our Changing World
We are pleased to announce the release of our latest issue of Pari Perspective: Ideas in Science, the Arts, Spirit and Community.
In this issue we explore ‘Our Changing World,’ and as bleak, dangerous and disintegrating as we may experience it so many of our writers have expressed hope in the way Václav Havel spoke of hope. Hope as the transcendent virtue. Hope as the opposite of despair. Hope is everything to do with the human spirit.
Each month we will be selecting an essay from our current issue to download for free. This month we feature Colin Tudge’s ‘A 21st Century Renaissance’ in which he urges that ‘what we do need right now is a total re-think: a metamorphosis; re-birth; indeed nothing less than a Renaissance, even more deep-rooted and far-reaching than the so-called “Italian” Renaissance of the 15th century.’
The journal is available to everyone who has become a Friend of the Pari Center: www.paricenter.com/membership
As you are all well aware Italy is on total lockdown until April 3. The government will then re-assess the situation. At that point we will be able to confirm which of this year’s events at the Pari Center will go ahead as planned. We’ll be sending out a notice as soon as a decision has been made. Stay tuned.
As we here in Italy adjust to life under emergency quarantine measures, there’s a feeling of solidarity between people around the country which is best summed up by the Italian phrase #andràtuttobene – everything will be alright. Italian children bearing their artwork with the slogan andrà tutto bene are all over Italian social media alongside the hashtag #iorestoacasa – “I’m staying at home.” From the two youngest members of the Pari Center:
Carolina and Vittoria, The Pari Center’s youngest members
FRIEND OF THE PARI CENTER
Please consider becoming a Friend of the Pari Center. By so doing you will be helping the Center to extend the work of David Peat, to continue with its established events and projects, and to start new ventures.
Your membership fee will entitle you to:
- a digital copy of the quarterly Pari Perspectives
- a 10% discount on all events at the Pari Center on any events you may choose to attend at the Pari Center within the year
- access to a Members Area of our website which will include blogs, discussion groups, and a library of past issues of Pari Perspective
Your Friend of the Pari Center membership is valid for one year from the date of purchase.