A meeting of Biography Work Trainers
This year, the ITF (International Trainers Forum) met in Pilisszentlaszlo in Hungary.
It is the task of the ITF to oversee the training in Biography Work world-wide under the auspices of the General Section of the Goetheanum.
They meet annually to discuss issues, accredit trainings and network with colleagues conducting trainings. They meet in Europe, and every second year they do so just before the World-Wide Biography Conference which is bi-annual.
This year, I successfully applied to attend the 3 days of the ITF as a guest, as I am now supporting the trainings in Holistic Biography Work that Karl-Heinz Finke conducts in 5 countries. Karl-Heinz is a founding member of the ITF and has attended regularly since its inception in 2003.
The current chair is Anita Charlton and had a challenging task this year. As the Biography work is expanding world-wide, particularly in Asia, there are demands for the ITF to grow and change as well. This year, there were many applications to attend and not all applicants could be included. Karl-Heinz encouraged some of the Consultants he is mentoring as Trainers in India, Thailand and Australia to attend for the first time. A special newcomer’s meeting was organised soon after the ITF chaired by Anita and Karl-Heinz. At this meeting, Helen from Australia, Sandhya, Rashmi, Janaki and Namrata from India, and Pornpimon and Chinrinee from Thailand, joined colleagues from many other places to learn more about the ITF and its requirements. Their questions and concerns about the future of the Biography Work were discussed.
Other challenges for the ITF, other than managing the fast growth of Biography Work, is its current Eurocentric/Western focus, and its requirement that Trainers need to be Class members of the School of Spiritual Science. This is difficult if you live far away from any Class Holders! The ITF is now growing to the point where policies and processes need to be established. A more formal structure may become necessary.
In June 2020, the ITF meets at Emerson College in England, and there will be much to discuss. I will be able to join Karl-Heinz there as a member of the ITF.
The Goetheanum’s decision to publish an affordable and well-translated edition of the 19 Class lessons may well assist our colleagues in Asia to continue their anthroposophical studies over the next few years. It will be an interesting time for those of us regularly travelling outside of Europe!