Ben Flohr

Ben's Story

I never had the conscious intent to become a Certified Drum Circle Facilitator. When I first met Arthur I knew that this is something i want to do. And I knew that this is something I can be good in (though I didn't know what "to be good in" means in these regards).

I started to learn and I received several certificates of attendance. I became a "graduate". I attended 3days and 6days. And all those papers meant nothing to me. It was only the learning and the connection with other people.

I guess my biggest training by that time was to host Arthur for 12 days in his Drumabout Germany in 2016. Seeing him work in the real world did something to me. I've been another facilitator after this trip.

As another logical consequence I did my mentor in Scotland which was an intense experience. In this moment I have to thank Jim Boneau who turned my head upside down in these ten days. And I have to thank Paul John Dear who taught me so much about hospitality, friendship and about what really counts.

It came to me like a natural evolution when Arthur asked me to become one of his fellow VMC trainers. Another chance to learn. But becoming a certified FACILITATOR??? I had no idea what value this should have for me.

Arthur kicked me. And I did my homework. I wrote a logbook, I wrote essays... but I forgot to send them to Arthur 🙂 But finally here I am.

And I have to admit: Thinking about the tasks I had to complete in the certification process definitely was a big learning. Thanks Arthur for kicking my butt.

Thanks Arthur for teaching me so much about music, community and life. Thanks Jim Boneau for teaching me so much about myself. Thanks Paul John Dear for teaching me so much about the things that really matter. Thanks to all my amazing fellow VMC trainers for creating such safe space for this small German boy. And thanks to the people I love in the community. You know who you are.

1. How have you incorporated the principles of the Arthurian Triplicities into your Drum Circle Facilitation practice?

The triplicities are an often discussed topic in Germany. In the beginning of my career they were to me some crazy esoteric symbols written by on old hippie. But as the good German I am, I studied them like I studied all materials Arthur gave me.

When I started studying the work of masterful facilitators in Germany and the world AND when I realized that there are people calling themselves DCFs whose facilitation does not speak to me I looked at my work. I – tadaaa – applied the critique triplicity because someone told that might help to improve. And I found out that was totally focused on the technical side of facilitation, on the WHAT. I was good in that. My technique was close to be perfect. But still other people’s rhythm events were way more fun and music. Without looking at the diagram I began to work on the WHEN and WHY. By that moment the “Application of Arthurian Facilitation” triplicity became one of my most important mantras. Whenever I step into the circle I ask myself “WHY do I use that techniques (the WHAT) and is it the right time (WHEN)?”

While my facilitation improved during the years (and it always improved the most when I stepped back from doing “technical” but inspired things, sometimes simply nothing) I studied the triplities again. And I began to understand that they are not just something I have to read, learn and apply. Wherever I succeeded in facilitation, business and life a triplicity fitted in.

Did I do good business? Yes. I said: Whenever somebody says “Drum Circle” in Germany my name should resonate with it. I took it all and did not allow others to follow me. And was MINE. I had some success but very limited. Once I started SHARING MY RHTYHMICAL BLISS with others and SERVED MY COMMUNITY my business started growing more and more. Meanwhile I’m an employed DCF, well known and respected in the German community. Whenever somebody says Drum Circle my name comes up automatically. Not by holding it by myself but by sharing and caring.

My DCs sounds best when the Drum Pitch and Percussion Timbre triplities are balanced, I got the most smiles from my participants when I really owned the Trust triplicity. Again: I first did it, then I looked at the triplicities and thought “Damn, he was right.”

I can say that one of my major objectives to make myself the best facilitator I can be is the bring all triplities in perfect balance. I know that will never happen. But the path is why it’s worth it.

Meanwhile as a trainer I do use the triplities a lot. I got them all in my head and I get put them out whenever it fits. And I learned to communicate that this is NOT hippie stuff. The first triplicity I work with in my trainings – especially in the 1Days – is the WHAT/WHEN/WHY-triplicity. It allows me to focus and the idea, that drum circle facilitation is way more than being able to wave my arms (“I can do stop cut and call&response. I am a masterful DCF.”).

And it makes people aware that it might be worth it coming to more trainings to learn more about the WHEN and WHY… and of course a lot of WHAT.

I took some years to understand. And it will take some lifetimes to understand better. But it is the path why it’s worth it.

2. What does the "Trust" Triplicity mean to you as a Rhythm event facilitator?

This Triplicty more than most of the others has an important impact to outer world as well as to the inner world and in every direction.

Rapport, honesty and congruency help people trusting me as well as they help me trusting in the circle group. Only good rapport, honest communication and congruent acting can gain trust in my clients. That's the outer world.

A good rapport with my inner child, my strenghts and fears, a honest self-assessment and congruent self-treatment allow me to gain and maintain trust in myself. That's the inner world.

3. How does incorporating the elements of the “Intuitive Skills” Triplicity improve your Drum Circle facilitation?

It is the moment after centuries of facilitation when you step into the circle, you realize that you forgot to make a plan, something happens, you leave the circle and everybody has a great time. The groove rocks. And you have no idea what you have done.

When reaching this stage of facilitation mastery ALWAYS have a camera ready to record your facilitation. You can learn so much from your subconsciousness.

Reaching this level is impossible when you loose your awareness of the circle's needs, your rapport with the players or your ability do adapt to what is neccessary. And however experienced you are, it matters every now and then. You will recognize it. And you will work around. You will swear to do it better next time. And it will happen again.

But these moments when all three elements of the "intuitive Skills" Triplicity make you able to be and act in the moment are pure joy.

And "you" means me of course 🙂

4. Evaluate where you are in developing a professional Rhythm event facilitation career using the “Career Development” Triplicity.

My business skills are developing well though I guess that this is the element I invest the least amount of energy in. I do what I have to do here with no exceptional vigour.

Sharing and serving is what I am here for.

To decribe the balance: I have an inner drive to share and serve and I need my business skills to pay my food and rent. This might be one of my most unbalanced tripities. I need to work on that.