Brave Leadership: The Art of Hosting

with Marguerite Drescher, Gabrielle Donnelly and Aarti Tejuja

November 16 - 19

We live in a time marked by fragmentation, polarization, and overwhelming social and ecological injustices. As warriors of Shambhala, we are called to engage our sad, tender hearts and strengthen our bravery in the face of obstacles, never giving up on human beings and human society as fundamentally wise and strong. Our Shambhala teachings offer profound and practical tools for personal practice and reflection, but it can be challenging to bring these practices and views into our relationships, organizations, and communities.

Designed to enrich and support how we practice and create Enlightened Society, this 3-day training is inspired by the Shambhala Principle and draws on the global Art of Hosting movement alongside related authentic leadership practices. You will learn simple yet powerful methods and frameworks for facilitating meaningful conversations, harnessing collaborative power, and organizing teams and groups around complex issues, including Circle Practice, World Café, Dilemma Work, Open Space Technology, and Chaordic Design.

In this training, you will:

  • Learn practical methods and tools for hosting conversations in your context (e.g. Open Space Technology, Circle Practice, World Cafe, Sense-Making methods)
  • Develop an understanding of frameworks and process design methods that support effective and participatory conversations, meetings, events, and engagements
  • Establish hosting skills as a core leadership practice
  • Hone your communication skills through deepening your understanding of speaking, listening, and holding space for others
  • Connect with regional Shambhala leaders and build relationships and networks
  • Hear stories from Shambhala leaders who are already using these methods and engaging hosting as a leadership practice
  • Invite others to join you in thinking strategically about a current idea or project that you are working on in your organization, community, or Shambhala Center

About the Presenters

Gabrielle and Marguerite are both long-time Shambhala members and practitioners who engage their aspirations and commitment to Enlightened Society daily through their work as social innovators. In this program, they blend their experiences, stories, and learning from the work they do with communities, organizations, governments, and universities with the richness of Shambhala vision and practice. They both live in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Arrival & Departure

Please plan on arriving between 3:00p and 6:00p on November 16 to chek-in and register. Dinner is offered at 6:30p. The program begins that night at 7:30pm. The program will end around 4:00p on November 19.


Karmê Chöling values its commitment to making programs affordable and available to all who wish to study with us. To support this commitment we provide two program price options.

Those who can are encouraged to register using this option.

To encourage all to study, we offer this discounted price to those who cannot afford the full price. Charitable donations provide the funding to make this pricing option available. We thank our donors for their generosity.

Financial Aid

Karmê Chöling offers interest-free payment plans, scholarships, and other financial assistance.

Please Note:
Price includes meals but not accommodations.


About Marguerite Drescher

Marguerite Drescher is a visual artist and graphic recorder and facilitator trained in cultivating vivid expressions for learning. She is dedicated to living art and exploring the possibilities for social transformation through creativity. Imaging and visualizing a different world allows us to create it with our collective conversation and action. Marguerite is committed to a radically inclusive approach that leads to sustainable strategies and actions. 

As a Graphic Facilitator Marguerite uses visual forms (such as large scale mural drawings and note taking) to capture collective insights and ideas and reflect them back to the group. She works with communities, governments and businesses in Nova Scotia and around the world in this way to help them map complex issues into simple images. Her company Brave Space Social Innovation offers graphic facilitation, visual coaching and strategy, live draw videos and workshops.

About Gabrielle Donnelly

Gabrielle Donnelly, Ph.D. is a scholar and practitioner of creativity, social change, and innovation. Co-founder of Brave Space, Gabrielle works with methods for meaningful public engagement, participatory leadership, and systems change such as The Art of Hosting, Deep Democracy, and Authentic Leadership practices.

An Associate of the Taos Institute, Gabrielle is Assistant Professor at Acadia Universty and teaches at the California Institute of Integral Studies. She is the Managing Editor of World Futures: The Journal of New Paradigm Research and publishes in the areas of creativity, social change, participatory leadership, and transdisciplinarity. Born in London, England and raised in Calgary, Alberta, Gabrielle lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She's British to the bone, Irish at heart, Albertan to the soles of her (cowgirl) boots, an engaged Nova Scotian, and an inspired global citizen.


About Aarti Tejuja

Aarti Tejuja recently stepped into the challenging role of Director of Social Engagement for Shambhala International. She is tasked with leading over 200 Shambhala Centers and groups all over the world toward a more socially engaged culture – encouraging us to lean into the broader community, where the tools and wisdom of our lineage can be of great benefit to the society beyond our shrine room walls.

Aarti has worked with constituent groups including boards, committees, volunteers, and external audiences. In 2015-16, she managed/mentored a youth open mic night program called “Speak Up Chicago.” She sits on the board of a non-profit, Restored Hope that advocates for underserved women and children. Aarti has been involved with several collaborative efforts in Chicago such as Thrive, Peace Hub, the Kenwood Interfaith Council and the Buddhist-Catholic Dialogues. She participates in many interfaith efforts, and was invited by Pope Francis to participate in a Buddhist Catholic dialogue in Rome in 2015.  

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