Updated: Dec 23, 2019
Last May our DIY Human Cards were featured at the Earth’s Call conference in Aspen where hundreds of environmentalists and activists gathered to develop new ideas and strategies to support the worldwide effort to reverse climate change. The cards provided a fresh perspective and a break from all-day meetings and the pressure to come up with solutions. In a beautiful windowed room that looked out on the almost constant snowfall—an omnipresent reminder that time was of the essence— participants flowed in to connect deeply with old friends and make new ones through the experience of the DIY Human Cards.
After a brief introduction, everyone sat at tables where they could make eye contact with everyone else. They dove right in, listening deeply and opening up to each other. Some tables were buzzing with shared stories that were forming the bonds of new friendships, while others were howling with the laughter of seeing themselves in someone they’d just met. You wouldn’t have guessed that they’d been strangers ten minutes before.
It is rare at any conference or large gathering to prioritize the importance of participants getting to know each other as individuals, separate from their work. DIY Human Cards create a non-hierarchical circle of inclusion that makes that possible. There is no need for small talk, or vying to be heard,
What kept coming up throughout the conference was that we can’t expect to solve the largest problem—the denial of climate change—without building bridges to communication. We realized time and again that the environmental movement is rooted in love for the planet and for each other, and that we must find simple ways to connect deeply, respectfully, and personally with folks who see things differently.
DIY Human Cards are based on The Narrative Method’s 12 Core Concepts. The prompts evoke the deeper stories that lie beneath social decorum and acceptable mores, stories that need to be truly heard and respected for the meaning they hold and for their honest reflection of who we truly are. We start in the middle of love to share our hearts, our dreams and our common humanity. Because that is one language everybody speaks.