We believe that people all around the world are longing for a new normal and willing to work towards that new normal.
So, we gave these people a name: the gappers.
Who are the Gappers
Gappers are simply people who are longing for a new normal and willing to work towards that new normal. We believe there are people all around the world who fit this description, so we decided to give them a name. We call them gappers, as they are willing to stand in a gap.
What is the gap
The gap is the space between what has been and what is coming. While this space between is a good space, it’s also an uncomfortable space, and it’s made up of smaller gaps, too.
We believe there are three main gaps within this space between:
This gap asks the question, “How do we foster relationships with our fellow beings on every scale of community that we are a part of, from the most local: our block, to the most global: our planetary home?”
This gap asks the question, “How do we move from being primarily consumers, and consumers of resources that benefit few, to being primarily producers, and producers of resources that benefit all?”
This gap asks the question, “How do we move from pursuing temporary happiness to embodying sustained joy?”
Do you feel the tension of these? We do, and we can’t ignore it!
Are you longing for a new normal and willing to work towards that new normal?
If so, then YOU ALREADY ARE A GAPPER, and we, your fellow gappers, want to learn from you! You don’t need us to teach you anything. We’re all in this together, and we’re all learning from one another.
That’s what our monthly gapper calls are all about
Monthly Gappers Call
Join the dialogue about how we can go about bridging the gap between the current normal and the new normal that we all long for.
In response to the gaps listed above (and the ones not listed), The Neighboring Movement has decided to create a space where us Gappers can connect with one another and facilitate dialogue so that, together, we can share stories and tips around how we bridge these gaps and work towards a new normal.
That’s why we have these monthly calls. So that people from all over can meet once per month to join in discussion, share tips, talk about something they’re passionate about, or tell stories that inspire and encourage us all to continue to work towards a new normal.
What happens on the Gappers Call?
Each call typically has a chosen topic that will be opened up for discussion and lightly facilitated by one of us or a volunteer from the community. This is a place where you can bring your passions, bring them up for discussion with the community and connect with other like-minded people.
Every call is different and topics are wide-ranging, but here are a few examples of recent or upcoming call topics:
- How to give good feedback
- Trial of Derek Chauvin
- Restorative Justice
- Fiction/Visionary Fiction
- Solving Rubik’s cubes
While we hope and expect this number to grow, as a young community, we currently see an average of 10 or fewer participants on our monthly calls.
Every last Tuesday of the month from 10:00 – 11:00 AM Central
Sign up below and we’ll email you a Zoom link each month along with that month’s discussion topic.
NOT SURE YET?
Consider joining the gappers Facebook page and decide if you want to join the calls later.
Example Gap: Citizenship
When talking about gapping work, it’s hard not to talk about the concept of citizenship. Seemingly, up until this point, the majority of humanity has been defining citizenship as something like “consuming goods in a certain place and doing so in an exclusive way”. Our nonprofit believes that citizenship is transforming and that it’s time to start defining the word differently.
With words stolen from our mentor, John McKnight, we would define citizenship as:
“together, being the producers of a future for all”
It all starts with our togetherness. We all are one. We are neighbors, yes, and while we do believe it starts there, it doesn’t stop there. We are also citizens of villages and towns, barrios and cities, provinces and counties, states and countries, and so much more. But even those are not all.
Beyond being citizens of all of these places, we are also citizens of the world. Even if we think nothing more unites us, we are already together in one beautiful way: home.
The concept of citizenship has been so politicized around immigration, and we’re over it; citizenship is about so much more than our nationality! We are united in our humanity, and starting with our neighbor-to-neighbor relationships, we have the opportunity to work with our fellow humans, wherever we are!
Instead of simply consuming resources in a place, and doing so in a way that often disregards the well-being of the whole, we have the opportunity to share resources in a place and work together in order to produce a future for every manner of thing on the planet! And guess what? This work is also incredibly joyful!
If this sounds like the kind of discussions you’d like to be part of, come say hello on the Facebook group and/or join the monthly gappers call.
What Gappers Do
Here are some specific examples of things that we think gappers do…
- Get to know the neighbors behind the 8 front doors closest to their own.
- Ask neighbors about their gifts, skills, and passions.
- Help form associations around the gifts, skills, and passions of neighbors.
- Help their associations of neighbors take action, not just discuss or complain.
- Share, borrow, and barter with their neighbors for mutual benefit.
- Explore their neighborhoods in order to discover the many assets therein.
- Support local businesses.
- Share grief with their neighbors and also walk alongside neighbors when they are grieving.
- Celebrate with their neighbors.
- Look inside their neighborhoods before looking outside their neighborhoods when addressing issues.
- Discover what their neighborhood has before determining what their neighborhood needs.
- Remain informed about the things that are affecting their fellow humans all around the world.
- Work towards solutions that benefit all – every manner of thing on the planet.
- Share resources with their neighbors, and all their fellow humans around the globe, so that all can have enough.
- Learn about where resources come from and how they are made.
- Seek to produce resources before purchasing them.
- Re-use or recycle items before purchasing them new.
- Reduce their possessions.
- Make changes to their everyday lives in order to address our climate emergency.
- Seek ways to continually care for the Earth.
- Advocate for policies that benefit all – every manner of thing on the planet.
- Learn about the cultures of their fellow humans around the world.
- Practice holding paradox by pondering different paradoxes.
- Ask if what they are doing brings them joy.
- Seek ways to express gratitude for, and celebrate, what has come before.
- Seek ways to express gratitude for, but also grieve, some of what has come before.
- Examine their lives for what aspects of “normal” are transforming.
- Dwell in their neighborhood well, regardless of potential time there.
- Acknowledge the good in communities different than their own.
- Embrace the ebb and flow of change and growth.
- Nurture relationships, near and far.
- Create and allow the margin needed for ethicality.
- Seek and appreciate art in diverse forms.
- Seek to learn when the right times to speak and to listen are.
- Smile at the people they pass on the pavement.
- Gracefully invite others to do the same.
- Are intentional about being in spaces where the demographic that they most closely align with is the minority.
- Practice civil conversation and seek to understand opposing perspectives.
- Are intentional about having conversations around certain subjects with people who they know disagree with them on those particular subjects.
- Hold people accountable for racist, sexist, or homophobic actions while maintaining relationships with them.
- Nonviolently protest systemic injustices.
- Participate in marches for things they believe in.
- Foster relationships with people who have different physical embodiments, genders, and sexualities than they do.
- Advocate for restorative justice and not retributive justice.
- Work to abolish the death penalty.
- Advocate that every human has access to health care.
- Make a commitment to taking part in gapping work, however that looks for them.
Go forth and foster relationships with your fellow humans on every scale of the community you are a part of. Go forth and be a producer, a producer of resources that benefit all. Go forth and embody sustained joy. Go forth and stand in the gap between what is coming and what has been. Go forth and be the gapper that you are!