Greetings from Austin: The Gathering of Wayfinders — Part 1

April 22 – 24, I flew to Austin, Texas to gather with other life coaches and just fans of Martha Beck to listen to her talk for a day and a half about the book she just wrote and the other two books to follow.  They dubbed it “The Gathering of Wayfinders.”

A coaches summit it wasn’t.  I’ve been to two others.  In Keystone, Colorado the altitude was causing a few people to be on oxygen.  Me I lived at 8,288 feet then, I didn’t see what the big deal was about altitude. It wasn’t Leadville, Colorado.  So, the next was at sea level in San Diego, California.  Less oxygen tanks, but way more coaches.  In two years they seemed to have multiplied.  And so did the Master Life Coaches who presented during both summits.

Now this was just a gathering in Austin, Texas; Elevation a safe 489 feet.  No other life coaches presenting.

And it was all about a new book.

Diana, Herself: An Allegory of Awakening is a self-help book of a whole other variety.  It is a work of fiction!  The main character, *spoiler alert*, Diana is thrusted on to her own hero’s journey thanks, to loosing a survival level job with one of those managers that make you just ask how in the hell did they end up overseeing anything.

“To be wild you have to have your preconceptions shattered,” Martha Beck.

So, sitting in a very Grand Ballroom at the JW Marriott, under merging Star of Texas chandeliers, I listened with approximately over 450 other people to Martha Beck break down the Seven Tasks of Enlightenment, which the main character goes through in the book.

We sat en masse, and remembered a time that we were shattered.  The whole room became quiet and a different type of calm settled over the group.  Martha talked about how each shattering shifted our trajectory in life, “destiny takes us to significant intersection in our stories.”

So, somehow The Gathering of Wayfinders was one of those intersections for me.  When I first moved to Austin, Texas 18 years ago my mother died; and three days before I settled into my chair around an overly large round banquet table back in Austin, Texas, my father passed away.

“You are living characters in a novel you are writing yourself,” Martha Beck.

And so, it began.


Poem that Martha Beck Recited during the Gathering of Wayfinders.

Poem that Martha Beck Recited during the Gathering of Wayfinders.