Rather than creating community accountability processes as kinder versions of legal proceedings, co-created ritual makes space where conflict can become generative instead of punitive. We can use our understanding of ritual and its transformative power, and our practice working with ritual, to co-create a ritual appropriate to the scale and scope of any particular conflict. It is important to hire someone to lead this co-creation who is an experienced celebrant of such rituals. (Link to List of Qualified Persons)Basic elements of co-created ritual include:
speak intentions, call in guides
honor participants and those who are not present, share agreements, establish plan for the ritual
Threshold-crossing activity takes those present from one state/way of life/understanding/identity into another, offers new perspectives, honors and supports emergent identities, marks changed relationships.
Ritual technologies might include clowning, theatrical re-enactment of “watershed moments” where things went wrong, blessings, music, time for participants to share prepared statements or spontaneous offerings, special food, sacred objects, medicine work and/or an apology process.
This is space for magical and unpredictable change. New insights and commitments can unfold.
What changes and commitments emerge from the ritual?
How can the community impacted by this conflict be accountable, to help the individuals involved and the community as a whole to integrate and support these insights and commitments to change? (Make and schedule specific plans.)
There are many scales of conflict, and a ritual structure can be adapted to various scales.