Renaissance Business Associates Renaissance Business Associates
Renaissance Business Associates Renaissance Business Associates

RBA Newsletter 2018

February 2018

Greetings from Valerie and Judy

The Warriors Vow

“I cannot change the way the world is, but by opening to the world as it is, I may discover that gentleness, decency and bravery are available not only to myself, but to all human beings.”                                 Chogyam Trungpa

In passing through 2017, one of the things I appreciated was the quality of reflection, conversation and discourse with people I know and love or those newly met.

In most cases, each of us doing noble battle with what’s pushing to be released personally, in our relationships, our communities, countries or this beleaguered world as a whole! The longing to shed what no longer serves and the struggle to do that seems only to intensify! Never give up we teach our children. Come back again and again.

What a time! Way beyond “interesting” and far into tumultuous with fires and floods, wars, famine and drought, violence and loss, greed and corruption. The list goes on.

To touch into the poem….by Juan Ramon Jimenez

“My boat struck something deep – nothing happened. Sound, silence, waves. Nothing happened? Or perhaps everything has happened, and I am standing quietly in the middle of my new life.”

In so many ways the world’s boat struck some deep places and events this past year and we found ourselves standing in the well of grief; eyes frantically searching for familiar or safe shoreline. Neither come quickly into view.

As I step with curiosity into this year I acknowledge the undeniable presence and pressure of fear, sadness and grief, so often held in silence by so many.

Women’s voices are rising and ringing around the world and there is a burgeoning power and strength in that, for which I give great thanks. In fact these days I brim with gratitude for all that is in my life, and for the opportunities I have to practice  underlying confidence as joy and sadness live side by side in my experience.

I also know that these are the times where care, courage, sharing and service beyond self are possible and necessary. My “new year’s resolution” that came into effect last year, is to share the resources I have at many different levels:

  •          To share home space as widely as is feasible (we held retreats, hosted groups on our programmes and theirs, had many family and friends to stay and launched a loft AirBnB – (check it out under Uitkyk – Listen to the Ocean.)
  •          I examined my relationship with money and how it flows – or not - choosing to give to those who need it or who are in service in ways I wish to support financially.
  •          And I learned again to open to, ask for and receive support, financial and otherwise, when I needed it.
  •           Sharing our experience and work in ways that enable others to carry processes and practices out and on as we reflect on what we choose to continue doing and offering and what can be handed on or let go of.

The Warriors Vow at the start of this newsletter, has been a mantra for a while as I continue on the path with Margaret Wheatley. I have entered a senior student phase with her as about ninety others begin a year long journey in Europe and the USA – Warriors on the Path for the Human Spirit.

Margaret will be in South Africa in June offering a retreat and some master-classes for corporates and the public. Please check in with me to learn more.

GenderWorks has achieved NPO status and all that goes with that. Gender Reconciliation workshops will continue to be offered in a range of communities, as open courses and in some universities. A team of GenderWorks facilitators will run a programme in the Netherlands mid-year. Donations given by my friends and family in 2017 were hugely appreciated and enabled six community workshops. Fund raising for this year continues to be top of the agenda for us.

Fish Hoek town marks its centenary this year and with it Uitkyk our home. In fact these two houses – Uitkyk Wes and Uitkyk Oost were the first buildings here and the town grew up around them. Old photographs show happy holidaymakers (in hats and long dresses I might add, lolling on the porch!)  Marking 100 years of the Mossop family presence in this place is calling for celebrations and we will have those in April.

Valerie’s solar hot water business continues even with impending lack of water! And she has so far run two of the nine Open Space events commissioned for the Treasury – on the theme of Beyond Transparency.

She is also looking at new technologies for portable desalination units as well as solar water from air units. Contact her if you are interested to know more.

Keeping it all in the family, my nephew Shamus Mossop is producing neat little compost toilets as an option for life without a flush loo.

Please pass this newsletter on to others and let us know what’s up for you in the coming year. We hope to see you.

May we all stay innovative and creative in the months to come and take care of ourselves and those who “come to our gate.”

With love and gratitude

Judy and Valerie.

P.S. We are still besotted grandmothers and remain awed and inspired by the doings and beings of daughters Tam and Kara and their partners.


11th – 22nd March        Warriors on the Path for the Human Spirit – USA (JB)

7th April                        We will be in ceremony marking the centenary of this home in Judy’s family: acknowledging the gift of that, whilst remaining cognisant of history and our damaged past. A ritual that embraces gratitude and apology in the same breath, is in the creating phase.

22nd April                     Family and Friends will gather to celebrate each other, our ancestors and this home.​​​​​​​

June:                            Margaret Wheatley will be in South Africa offering retreats, master classes and leadership seminars​​​​​​​

July/August:                 Judy and Valerie will be in the UK, Scotland and Portugal. Whilst visiting friends at the Findhorn Community in Scotland, we will offer a day long Deep Listening and Facilitation taster.

30th Aug – 2nd Sep        Training Rites of Passage work for those working particularly with young women (and men) Please check in for more information for yourself and others and book your place.

19th – 25th Sept            Facilitation and Deep Listening Skills programme – residential.  

October                       Warriors on the Path for the Human Spirit – USA (JB)

22nd Nov – 2nd Dec       11 day Vision Quest – this will be our 75th!