Friday, November 27, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
The dialogue during our learning today was fascinating. It is a facilitator training for Appreciative Inquiry which is a philosophy that is very dear to my heart. Not only does it describe the way that I view the world but this week I got clear about how to distinguish it from "positive thinking" which has all those gooey Pollyanna'ish attributes. Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is not positive - it is generative. That is, it creates a framework from which to inquire and therefore observe the best in people, organizations and systems. It is in its broadest sense a systematic discovery about what gives "life" to a living system when it is most effective. I have begun to study it in depth and this training that I am away from home for is another step towards more mastery in the discipline of facilitating it in my profession and in my life.
Today, we entered a dialogue in the course room about what it will take to shift the attention of the world from a deficit based world view. While it was acknowledged that there remains a vested interest in that position, surely there is a growing opportunity to find sufficient value in engaging in a new paradigm of thought that gives life force and energy to "change at the speed of imagination". I have discovered that this IS my life's work. Currently it is expressed through my coaching others and growing my coaching and training skills to the point where I can teach and facilitate for learners becoming excellent coaches and I am beginning to see the path which leads me even further in my commitment to a world that works - for every one.
Being distanced from the usual, removed from the familiar and spending some time with myself for company does make room for observation from an uncommon perspective. Nattering away as I do when in a room by myself, I discuss with myself the implications of my scrutiny of my behaviour and reactions and draw some interesting conclusions. I actually like my own company and perhaps because it is now a rare occasion that I have to spend hours alone, I value the manner in which my mind operates and honour the intuitive sense of forward direction that is clarified without distractions.
I miss home and the comfort and luxury of being well loved by my husband. I do appreciate the tremendous value in this introspective review and the new knowledge that I am advancing here. I will return refreshed and renewed. I have traded palm trees and extravagent heat for rain and some marvelous conversations - with others and myself!
Friday, November 13, 2009
Please watch this video, then go to this site and add your name, check out the other affirmers, peruse the events and ways to participate and tell me that you are not moved beyond your stodgy, cynical, "this will never change" perspective. I have followed the creation of this charter for many months and was honoured to receive the final version in my inbox this week.
I am left with some questions though... how will we know that a difference is being made? What will be the evidence that a shift IS occurring? How will the orphans of Gaza, the disappeared of Chile, the child soldiers of Somalia, the teenage hookers of East Vancouver know that we are making the world a better place?
Will the fat, apparently heartless corporate heads of the companies that exploit the poor and the helpless wake up tomorrow with a change of heart and give their profits to Save the Children Fund? Will the powerful leaders of countries that dominate and slaughter people in other parts of the world in the name of a "justifiable" defense suddenly smack their collective foreheads and call a cease fire everywhere? Will the angry gang member put down his gun and forgive the slight from the other side instead of getting in his car and shooting up someone's house in a driveby revenge?
What would have to happen to create that miracle?? In the face of all the magical, powerful, amazing openings that are being created every day by so many of us, how can we possibly know we have turned the corner and are not facing the inescapable end of human beings? What certainty can I give to my darling grandson that he will have an opportunity not just to live but to prosper and thrive in a world where the majority also share that future?
As I dwell in these questions, allowing the not-knowing to just be a part of what is present in my sunny office in the space where I was blessed to be born, I can look into my heart and realize that it is not possible to have a Hollywood type conclusion here. There seems to be some inexorable and unrelenting momentum propelling us to our future. The interpretation of what will result will be up to each individual.
I can, in the light of being a part of the creation of the Charter for Compassion, accept that one possible outcome will be that we pause a few years from now and look back on the progress we have made in a remarkably short period of time and experience wonder and joy for what work has been done and how this Charter was embraced by so many. Let it be so. Namaste.