The Power Of Circles with Sedonia Cahill & Charles Garfield


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“No matter how diverse the group of people,” says Charles Garfield, “if you push their ancestry back far enough, you’ll get to the same place–people sitting around the fire, telling stories.” Sedonia Cahill joins Garfield to discuss the power of circles in personal renewal and community healing. Circles are a way to bring ceremony and sacredness to gatherings of friends, family and community; a way to connect on a deeper level without fear of judgment; a place where you can truly be heard. A circle is about commitment, sharing and learning from each other and, as Cahill points out, a place where you are loved, for “It’s so easy to love somebody if they’ll give us a glimpse inside.”


The late Sedonia Cahill was the director of The Great Round, a nonprofit organization dedicated to spiritual renewal and co-author of Ceremonial Circles (HarperSanFrancisco 1990). Garfield is a best-selling author, a psychology professor, lecturer, and founder of San Francisco’s Shanti Project, the first AIDS caregiving organization in the world. Together with Cindy Spring they have co-authored Wisdom Circles: A Guide to Self-Discovery and Community Building in Small Groups (Hyperion 1998).

Topics Explored in this Dialogue:

  • How to create a circle of your own
  • What are the many different personalities of circles
  • Why circles lack a power structure
  • What are reasons for creating a circle
  • What is the value of circles to corporations
  • How circles help you let go of self-judgment
  • How to form circles that include children and teenagers

Host: Michael Toms               Interview Date: 11/25/1997                  Program Number: 2686              


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