Should I attend Fluidity Forum?

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You’ll probably get a lot out of Fluidity Forum if you enjoy

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The Vibes

For most of us, feeling like a gathering is “not for me” depends on the “vibe”.[1] In a gathering that has no emphasis on music or fashion, the vibe is made of linguistic tics. The key is for Fluidity Forum to encourage multiple languagings, so as to prevent one vibe from being dominant.

There are three main vibes who are excited about our main topics. All three are identifiable by their linguistic tics. You do not have to identify with any of them. Here they are:

The “Care Work self-help therapeutic spirituality” vibe

  • “holding space”, “holding an intention”, the word “hold” a lot
  • “in relationship” instead of saying “in A relationship”
  • “in community” instead of saying “in A community”
  • using the word “a” less often, in general
  • “called to” / “moved to” / “what wants to be said” instead of “I decide/choose/want”
  • “what is alive in you”
  • “feel into”
  • “sit with”, “be with”, “working with”, “with” a lot

The “Managerial Dynamism” vibe

  • use “impact” as a verb
  • use “ask” as a noun, to mean “request” (“my ask”)
  • “the why” to mean “the reason”
  • nouning verbs & verbing nouns, in general
  • “leveraging”
  • “synergy”
  • “agile”
  • “value-add”
  • passive voice (“mistakes were made”)
  • euphemisms

The “Silicon Valley Rationalist” vibe

None of these vibes are a problem. They’re good. But when only one vibe dominates a group, it’s narrow. In a narrow group, there is one vibe; it is assumed that you identify with it; and no one translates for you.[2] The vibe turns into a status ladder for you to climb, and you have to constantly put on a demonstration. Being the most enlightened; the most wealthy and profitable; the smartest. In a narrow group, there is no other way for you to be valued by the group, so everyone is either at the bottom or the top of the heirarchy of who has influence.

Instead, we will encourage trying on different frames or switching between them.

At Fluidity Forum, when you listen to an unfamiliar vibe, please give the benefit of the doubt and attempt to translate it into your own languaging. It is expected that someone might need you to help translate what you say out of your languaging. It is okay for you to not identify positively with some, or all, of these vibes, or the settings from which they originate. You can just be curious about others’ ways of thinking, acting, and feeling, without being expected to become that way & stay that way.

  1. I got this framing from a post on Rival Voices’ Substack 🌐. ↩︎

  2. In my background, I have long enjoyed hanging out in cultures (open source hackers, maker spaces, and science fiction conventions) where we love nothing more than to explain the jargon to you, inviting everyone in to the easiest low-effort ways to feel like you belong: 1. puns, and 2. Monty Python references. It can feel like a warm welcome to some, while others feel it to be self-limiting. The Metamodernist Hanzi Freinacht describes them in Hackers, Hipsters, and Hippies. ↩︎