I devised this unique ‘check-in’ choreography as part of a project with some people who wanted to work together creatively. I encouraged them to model their self-organisation on swarm :
participants lie on floor in a wheel formation, heads together as a ‘hub’. They are encouraged to think of the space above their collective heads as the space of hivemind, and to put their thoughts (considered or random), dreams, desires and wishes, creative ideas and free associations into that space.
It is emphasised that once a thought is placed in hivemind it becomes part of it, and is not retraceable back to its thinker, ie a thinker cannot be held responsible for the thoughts in hivemind, and thinkers can let go of troubling or difficult issues by placing a thought in hivemind and allowing it be a ‘symptom of the system’.
After plenty of time for free hivemind work, group are asked to place specific ‘totems’ into hivemind which help shape field of future instances of hivemind, and by extension, work done by the group in the coming time period.
I suggest starting with small durations eg 1-3mins, and building in small increments. The collective focus required by hivemind is hard to sustain. Practice is rewarded.
UPDATE: Theatre games that build concentration, awareness and silence really enhance the hivemind experience. Exercises that help to build a sense of ensemble are key.
I have started introducing 1-3 minute periods of ‘extreme tuning in’ to the hivemind mix. These encourage silence and awareness.
It has become clear to me that where the hivemind stands as a manifestation of the social organism, those taking part in hivemind constitute the ‘new organs of perception’ Joseph Beuys insisted we needed to develop. The more each person tunes in, the more tuned in the hivemind becomes. To reiterate, the participants are the organs of perception, the eyes and ears, of the social organism.
It is useful sometimes to add ‘saying what i am becoming aware of’ to these instances of hivemind, bringing in a vocalisation of private experience in a clearly defined way.
It is very pleasant too to engage in periods of ‘humming like a swarm of honey bees’.
We are the bees of the invisible.
We wildly collect the honey of the visible,
to store it in the great golden hive of the invisible.
Rainer Maria Rilke
Structural elements of this choreography arise from my experience of Social Dreaming Matrix, as devised by W. Gordon Lawrence www.socialdreaming.org