THE SO((U))L HQ was started in 2011 it is a community space for the discussion, exploration and discovery of the arts, culture, spirituality, music, creativity and the promotion of social justice, equality, self-reliance.
Di Institute for Social Leadership was started in January 2014 and offers Social Support Services and Learning Opportunities to Youth and Adult.
I have a vision to create spaces all over the world. My ancestors and my friends have helped me to articulate these ideas as a vision of the importance of space:
The idea of SPACE is a simple yet complex. Space allows for redefinition and definition. Space can allow for a multidimensional understanding of self, society and social constructs. Space allows us to see, feel and know more about the ideas and the relationships that make us who we are. When Sun ra said “space is the place” what he was pointing to was the opportunity for the Africans to experience a freedom of mind, thought, self and community. A creative freedom. The ultimate authority to govern and shape your reality.
What is our reality? What is our understanding of ourselves as people placed on this island to live together? What are the different realities which interplay every day? What is our understanding of our history and our experiences in the world? How do we organize our lives around this understanding? Space is important for us to see all of this. And it is space that brings us into a fullness of living.
The HQ and the ISL are Spaces. They are physical locations, but they are also gateways to new understandings and to new realities.
We have made our determination to create a particular experience with SOUNDS of LIFE events political. We are being deliberate about how we understand and experience our reality and how we want people to understand and experience reality and we are doing that through Space.
The first time that we referred to the idea of space was in thinking about what Sounds of life events were. What was the product? The product is the place. The place is how you define and characterize the experience. The second time was at our first board meeting at the HQ and after the conversation we came up with the following definition; SO((U))L creates alternative community spaces for discussion, exploration and discovery of the arts, culture, spirituality, music, creativity and the promotion of social justice equality and self-reliance.”
This was the first time that we used alternative community spaces in a definition. We had started out as a global music and events company and the HQ was the main place from which we operated.
We have come into an understanding of space as a concept. I think that we have created a philosophy around space in the work of SO((U))L. That philosophy is one that is important for self-determination it is important for acknowledging how we are similar yet different but we can still be together.
Space create experiences
Space is the foundation for community
Space is the foundation for self-determination
Space has soul.
Space embodies ideas
Space embodies memories
Important ideas need to be embodied in space. Space is like canvas or clay it provides a physical representation of a thought or a conversation. It brings the imaginary into the real. Space is a commitment to the thought, the idea or belief a promise to begin the exploration or search, to reverse or extend the conditions or reality of the present.
Making space is creative. Making space is powerful. The act of making space especially a political space is bringing the impossible into the possible. Making space is the negotiation of alternative possibilities.
The name SO((U))L derived from SOUNDS OF LIFE has giving the work of building spaces a significant spiritual dimension. We are acknowledging the mind, body, soul connection and the importance of that. The soul is the deepest part of the self. Things or experiences that touch the soul have a long lasting impact and they leave and imprint in your being.
What we know now about space is what we have understood over time. Space and time work together. Real Understandings are grounded. Grounded is when you take time. Taking time also means understanding time ultimately redefining time. This pushes you into a different reality. It pushes you against the norm and then you can begin to see the constructs. And then you can begin to experience the freedom that space creates in time. This process becomes an experience. Repeated over and over again in time. Space mediates time and reality. And the physicality of space creates a reality in time.