I have a report this month! Here in Ashland, Oregon our “Welcome Home” on Thursday eve was extra packed and very passionate as the six new brothers from Ashland shared their adventure and their wives blessed them beautifully. I presented the MKP history with a heartfelt personal touch this time!
A few days after the training Bob (Hallucinating Cave Bear) Jones who came all the way down from Bellingham for the brother dance, invited me to “write up your experience returning to see what you have created…as many men would love to read about it.” Here is what I wrote:
My NWTA experience a decade later. by Bill Kauth (Co-Creator of the New Warrior Training Adventure / Co-Founder of the ManKind Project)
I loved staffing the NWTA, but haven’t for nearly 10 years. Early on I staffed 40+ in a row, but stopped after 20 years. Six months ago my I-group invited Eric, our one non-MKP man, saying “If you do the training we will all be there to staff.” He agreed and we knew it would also bond us deeper so we all signed on (see photo below). At this time I was feeling ready to step in once more and take a look at this creation from 30 years prior.
I felt some strange apprehension as it came closer. Yet when we arrived I began to feel the warmth of the other staff men as we connected, sensing we were there for a higher purpose. It felt somehow like a shared “sacred” journey.
Tender and Amazed: I’d signed on as a rookie (except for the “King Elder” role) so my tasks were lite. I sat in on many processes as an observer. The men’s reverent attention to serving the initiates touched me. So many times as I saw these beautiful young brothers presenting material I’d personally written three decades before, teaching it from their own hearts, I felt tender tears of joy. Being right there, seeing and feeling the transformation of all of us, and knowing it was happening, just like this, all over the world touched me to tears again and again.
At times I felt shocked, saying inside, “they can’t do this stuff” especially the incredible and splendid archetypal scenes of Saturday night. I’d think “Who on earth came up with this stuff?” Then I’d remember, oh yeah!
Men often ask how it feels to be a “founder.” I mumble something positive, but what I want to say, is that I’m just a regular guy leading a regular life and rarely have awareness of what flowed thru me into the world so many years ago. But being there again, deep in the heart of the training, feeling the men and the magic grounded the magnitude of this gift that had somehow flowed thru Tosi, Hering and me. Feeling so grateful for my journey of joy.
New & important changes: The “accountability” piece has evolved beautifully into an invitation to the initiates to share something in their life that’s out of “integrity.” Men stood right up to explore their inner process and reclaim their integrity. Only after doing 5 or 6 processes did the leader mention “being late” for one final process. And during that same time the definition of accountability was repeated to ground the learning cognitively.
Then I heard a new definition of “Power” repeated often enough to cognitively ground what was going on all around the men in the pit and would be seen and felt over and over for the rest of the weekend. “POWER; SPEAKING TRUTH WITH VULNERABILITY” Brilliant!!
Bless our very own Northwest MKP leader Robert Crowell!