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Petaluma Conversations is a weekly event that happens seasonally at the Petaluma Library.  Everyone is invited.  Next sessions will be in the fall.

Statement of Purpose

The purpose of Petaluma Conversations is to provide a place where people can come together and listen to each other, to get to know one another, and to understand each other, even if they don’t agree with each other; to build community across differences. We do this to connect with and learn about others in our community who are different than we are; to be heard about whatever is important to each of us; and to contribute to building a resilient community that values understanding and finding ways to bridge social and political divides.

Conversation Principles

1. Everyone wants to be heard and understood
2. We are here to understand each other, not interrogate, argue, or convince each other.
3. Showing understanding, verbally or nonverbally, is not agreeing.
4. We are here for mutual understanding, not problem-solving.
5. We trust that people will find their own solutions, or decide to change their minds (or not) as they see fit, and that mutual understanding makes a contribution to that individual process.
6. Conversation participants hold an intention to participate with:
Curiosity – about others and what is important to them.
Openness – about oneself, and about different points of view.
Honesty – saying what is important to you, even if it is different than others.
Mutuality – following the structure provided to ensure everyone gets an equal chance to be heard to their satisfaction.
Care – attempting to hold others and one’s self with care in your words and actions.

Topics Discussed

• LGBTQ & Marginalization • Color blindness • Petaluma Fairgrounds • Political Polarization • Effect of Media • Gun Violence • Coming out of COVID • Homelessness • Loneliness • Political Divides • Charitable Giving • Trust
• Ukraine War • Elders • Gender • Spirituality • Forgiveness • Patriotism • Petaluma Speedway • Back to School • Family Relations • Climate Change • Mandated Care for Homeless • Religion-Spirituality • Volunteering • Binary Thinking • Cell Phones & Our Relationships • Coping with Stress • Middle-East Conflict • Reparations • First Ladies and Policy Making • Proud of-Regret this year • What gives you hope.