Ousia Philosophy

“This conversation is rooted in age-old wisdom that natural cycles are woven into our perceptual experience, informing every movement, breath, feeling, and thought. We take responsibility for the knowing that nature is within and that we are inseparable from the natural world. When we align our bodies, minds, and belief in profound interconnectedness, it brings meaning and significance to our endeavors and actions. 

Learning from natural cycles and understanding nature as part of the Self, and the Self as inseparable from nature. Learning to embrace the moment, attune to Self and Other, hold a greater vision, and engage actively with a plan aligned with the path. These ten elements formulate a picture of wholeness. Through this lens, we ask, where is the aliveness? Where is the pain? And how can we grow into both?”
– Robin Zill

We strive to embody these elements within our artistic practice, community presence, and our lives as a whole.  These agreements are based on Robin Zill’s Great Conversation and the Ousia Principles.

Ousia (oo-see-ahh): means essence, nature;
that which makes us who we are.
Embrace your journey.


 1. Energetic Awareness: centering ∙
I agree to be mindful of my personal energy, the environment, and the beings with whom I am sharing space; practicing awareness of the source and destination of each breath.

2. Nourishing Resources: tending ∙
I agree to tend to my unique physical, mental, emotional, and energetic well-being. I will ask what I have to give, what I need to receive, and how thoughtful preparation of inner and outer resources can nourish a healthy web of support within this community.


3. Embodied Movement: actualizing ∙
I agree to be present with the unfolding cycles that influence my interactions and relationships with those in this space. I agree to be present to the dynamics that inform how I move, express, connect, am influenced, and influence this space. I commit to seeking continual consent in all of these interactions.

4. Ethical Influence: impacting ∙
I agree to practice speaking with clarity, respect, love and directness. I seek to see and change oppressive tendencies within myself to help foster a community of inclusion. I agree to mindfully practice forgiveness, stay curious about how I can continue to refine actions, increase the introspective process, and give other people space to do the same.

5. Integration: balancing (non-sequential, anytime all-the-time) ∙
I agree to the continual process of change and growth, taking the time to step back, reflect, and recognize any new realizations within my personal and social relationships of the mind, body, spirit, and environment. I move towards a place of balance, peace, and compassion with myself and others throughout this process and cycles of transformation.


6. Essential Aestheticsappreciating ∙
I agree to be mindful of my ability to choose my perspective with integrity. I strive to appreciate the value of all things, the essence of change, and recognizing that beauty is a natural expression of diversity. I agree to be open to the discovery of connection, love, and compassion while upholding actions and agreements that support collective wellness and honor nature’s wisdom.

7. Regenerative Environment: sharing ∙
I agree to practice mindful generation of my actions, learnings, and intentions, while exploring the ways I share in our responsibility for tending to the wellbeing of the local biosphere and global community. I seek to honor the lineage of the traditions that I share and learn; carrying forth information and wisdom while exploring and maintaining the integrity of inclusivity.  I will engage in seeking peaceful solutions when discussing diverse, divisive, or difficult topics. I will support intergenerational ecosystems, and celebrate our shared bounty to expand abundance. I will only take what I need and use all that I take, leaving enough for others to do the same.


8. Natural Expression: engaging ∙
I agree to engage in reclaiming my true essence, humanity, and deep sense of place and belonging. I celebrate my art as a catalyst for healing and a vehicle for awakening our human potential. I agree to being mindful of the impact of my engagement with those around me, while being present in each moment, communicating authentically from a space of curiosity, and continually educating myself in regards to my interaction within this community.

9. Equitable Engagement: exchanging ∙
I agree to give and receive in generative and inclusive ways; while being mindful of how I participate and what it takes to create a harmonious and welcoming community. I strive to interact with purposeful and ethical intention, while learning about local power dynamics, offering space to communicate concerns, paying tribute to the history of human dynamics, and committing to unlearning patterns of self and environmental harm. I seek to acknowledge the collective efforts for social and environmental reciprocity, just and equitable opportunity, and interconnective livelihoods. I participate in this model for peaceful resistance to injustice, respectful navigation through diverse perspectives, while engaging in honest conversations. I acknowledge the interconnected web of all things and hold space for creative exploration to improve existing structures for those who have been rendered voiceless.

10. Time, Space, Rhythms: experiencing (non-sequential, anytime all-the-time) ∙
I agree to respect the existential elements of the human experience, the perception of space and time and their relationship to the natural cycles that influence all of life. I participate in the harmonious flow and rhythm of life itself, making use of the resources, spaces, and moments that create a community in motion. I choose to explore the changing interplay of dynamics within myself, the vastness of the living environment, and my relationships with nature and the beings that navigate the same spaces together.

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