What is Resonance?

On the Same Wavelength

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Something brought you here…a memory, a familiarity, a feeling, or an intellectual curiosity about this thing called resonance.

That is how I came to this work too. A magical experience in a group of strangers, something far beyond what I knew from participating in all kinds of groups before, touched me in a way I couldn't explain. Was it something I had been yearning for or something that I already knew - deeply knew - in a way that resided within me, within my body and soul, and was waiting to be called forth? It felt like a connection to others and to myself, a total engagement that made me lose track of time, and a sense of palpable energy that moved all of us toward what we needed to accomplish. I didn't know what it was or what had happened, but I knew something had. I needed to find out…and I did.

So began my own journey toward better understanding the phenomenon I came to call Collective Resonance™. What did it feel like? What shifted groups into resonance? How significant was it in people's lives? Does it recur when remembering or telling others about it? These are some of the questions that brought me to my doctoral study and to the founding of The Resonance Project™.

Another story. I began my research in September of 2001, concurrent with the September 11th events in New York City. I had gotten approval from my dissertation committee to embark on the research which involved interviewing people who had experienced Collective Resonance and agreed to answer my questions about it - those similar to the ones above.

My interviews began that September and continued through the next five months, the first five months after September 11th. I live near Manhattan, have worked in the twin towers, and have family and friends who were there that fateful day. What unfolded from the events of that day was very close to home for me…in many ways.

Amid the smoldering ruins of a way of life and the fear and anger that followed, I found myself deeply immersed in stories of Collective Resonance, the "magic" that transforms individuals and whole groups through access to greater sources of wisdom. It was surreal really, to be listening, in the foreground, to stories of joy, of inspiration, of personal transformation and group choices toward positive action in the world while in the background hearing voices of hate, of fear, of closing ranks and borders…of dissonance.

By day were stories of love, hope, and healing; by night, in the media, those of anguish, despair and vengeance. And as my research came to an end and I began to surface the themes that define collective resonance - themes such as vulnerability, silence, story, truth, shared intention - the outside clamor grew worse. Anger turned to war, vulnerability to defense and then offense, and people moved further and further away from each other.

And still there are the stories of resonance. What I hold is what I have learned about it through the 32 interviews and the themes that weave through them, informing us of what Collective Resonance is, what it can mean for our personal and collective growth, what transforms groups and how it can recur. I know now that resonance is there - always - that it is accessible and that it can emerge in all kinds of situations and among many kinds of people. I know that it transcends the intellectual exchange of ideas to encompass intuition, the intelligence of the body, and the energetic space between people. I also know that it taps into greater sources of wisdom and intelligence than the individual and even the group can access alone.

It is vital to tap into these sources of connection at this point in human evolution because we are witnessing ever more clearly the breakdown of our more familiar efforts - debate, discussion, negotiation, and compromise. I want to share what I've learned and to offer it as the beginning of a wider exploration into ways of being together that support and sustain life and spirit, not destroy it. And I want to invite others to come forward with their knowledge, their stories, and their willingness to participate in new ways of living and working together.

The Resonance Project is an effort to continue the search for more knowledge about Collective Resonance. Its mission is to further understanding of the connections between human beings - energetic, physical, and intuitive - and between them and larger forces leading to right action in the world. It focuses on three areas - research, story, and practice - and is open to all who feel called to participate in expanding the ripples of resonance in their lives, their communities, and the world in which we live.

I hope you will join us.

Renee Levi
January 2005

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