NGL Framework

The NGL framework is the foundation of how we orient to our work. It touches on everything from the most intimate and internal to the most global and collective, and everything in between.

The work invites us to deep engagement that, if we take it seriously, changes everything about how we live and work. It includes theoretical, political, spiritual, and emotional elements.

So far, it has been almost entirely articulated by Miki Kashtan, NGL’s seed founder, emerging over the years of her work with NVC and gifted to NGL when it was founded in 2017. Since then, more new learning has been unfolding through experimentation that has included more people in various areas, though Miki is still doing most of the actual articulation of new pieces of the work both in her general writing on the Fearless Heart and elsewhere and within the Learning Packets project. Forty-one of these packets are complete, and eight more are in progress.

The most active experimentation, learning, and articulation at present is happening within the home pod that includes Emma Quayle, Eddy Quinn, and Miki and influenced by people who engage with them during visits, gatherings, and ongoing online projects; in the collaboration between Miki, Emma, and Verene Nicolas; within the Resource Flow area which includes Alper Süzer, Magda Baranska, Miki, and Selene Aswell; and in the Power and Privilege holding team which includes Aurélia Saint Just, Menaka Neotia, and Miki.

Writing and presenting from within and about the NGL framework is also growing, including blogging by Emma and Verene, presentations by Selene on the gift economy, courses offered by the NVC for Liberation and the Vision Mobilisation teams, and the “Echo calls” project that involves a number of people offering NGL intros following Miki’s own.

In addition, various NGL people, including in addition to the above people also Fabian Kirsch, Roni Weiner, Erin Selover, and Jessie Morey, are engaging with organizations and communities leaning on Convergent Facilitation, our experiments with organizational systems and structures, and the Vision Mobilisation framework to bring people together to make complex decisions, to build capacity for collaborative leadership, to shift resource patterns, and all in all to find ways to anchor vision in how they function even within the world as it is.

The long term trend with regards to the NGL Framework, though slow in moving, is towards more and more people within NGL taking on writing, engaging with groups, organizations, and communities, and presenting the materials to others, as the bulk of the work is passed on from Miki to others, a project we hope to complete before Miki dies.

Here is the short version of what the framework encompasses.

Restoring Choice: Socialization, Liberation, and Integration

Within the internal realm, the NGL framework focuses on liberation from the effects of socialization and the trauma of 7,000 years of patriarchy and its offspring systems (e.g. capitalism, slavery, white supremacy, the oppression of children, and more). This includes an ongoing commitment to transcend either/or dualities into an integrated whole (e.g. process and results; theory and practice; vision and practicality; collaboration and efficiency) as a core orientation within NGL. This section of the packets is based on an integration of the NGL approach and the Compass approach developed by Arnina Kashtan.

Purpose and Values: Vision Mobilization, Collaborative Systems, and Seeding the Future

The NGL approach recognizes purpose as a key entryway into transforming individual and collective ways of being. As it applies to groups, communities, organizations, and movements, this approach focuses on creating systems that align with purpose and values as a way to support capacity instead of slipping into patriarchal training and norms.

Restoring Togetherness: Interdependence, Dialogue, and Collaboration

Restoring togetherness goes against the basic form of functioning that patriarchy has established based on separation and control. It puts at the center needs and interdependence in establishing collaboration. Given the depth of separation, the practices of interdependence require a high degree of commitment and support structures.

Scarcity, Separation, and Powerlessness: Patriarchy, History, and Economics

This module is the most intellectually dense and provides vital anchor points in understanding why we focus on patriarchy and systems, and how to bring sufficient tenderness to this legacy that we can begin to move anywhere without recreating it all the time.

Restoring Flow: Nonviolence, Systemic Change, the Commons, and the Gift Economy

Our understanding of nonviolence spans the entire range from the most internal (seeing Nonviolent Communitcation and nonviolence more generally as a spiritual practice) to the most global (a detailed picture of a fully collaborative global governance design).

Caring for the Whole: Leadership and Facilitation

Collaborative leadership and group facilitation are based on reweaving the fabric of togetherness through an ongoing recommitment to caring for the whole, beyond self, beyond this or that specific group. Given how deeply committed to control patriarchy is, this focus requires rigorous relearning about how to use power with others instead of over others or rejecting power and leadership altogether, as many committed to transformation tend to do.

Learning, Integrating, Applying, and Sharing NVC

NVC (Nonviolent Communication) is a tool of liberation, a set of principles and practices that supports movement towards restoring individual and collective capacity to live in choice, togetherness, and flow, and a lens through which we make sense of all life. At the heart of NVC is the understanding that all actions are attempts to meet needs that are shared by all humans.

Power, Privilege, and Liberation: Embracing Unconditional, Unilateral, and Universal Solidarity

All patriarchal societies have profound divisions between people rooted in the extraction of resources from the many for the material benefit of the few. Such divisions are kept in place through systemic violence and through being internalized in all of us, regardless of our social location. Developing unconditional, unilateral, and universal solidarity from wherever we are on the power map of the world towards everyone else requires immense capacity and is pivotal to being able to come together to create the conditions for humanity to realign with life.

From the start, we have been aiming for radical pedagogy, leaning as much as possible on self-organized learning and as much as necessary on Miki’s individual capacity and experience. We are all committed to doing what we can so that this work outlives Miki, continues to nurture us, and plays as big a role as we can make it have in humanity’s effort to turn around the destruction of patriarchal living.