Friday, October 12, 2012

Message from Anastasia, New Horizons Executive Director and Founder

Study Report
As the designer and chief Possible Human, Possible Society Study interviewer I think this is a good time, as we head into the coming presidential election, to speak more directly about some of the things the study has clarified, at least  in my mind.
Here is one example:

People are like the patches on
a  patchwork quilt; each is
different and unique.
The importance of sustaining our human resources

In the heat of our national presidential election campaign, one of the biggest things we seem to be overlooking is that behind the scenes of day-to-day life, election campaign or not, treating one another well is still one of the singularly, most important  things we can do., even contributing to the solutions of our national problems. 

Puzzle of the day: See if you can figure out how. The answer is, truly, there if you can think big enough.

And it could/should be free, say I, after charging $100 and more per hour for my psychotherapy services in my more than twenty-five years in private practice, often providing “the milk of human kindness,” caring and compassion that ought to have been freely given and received by ordinary humans just being human. I stand, justly shamed for my part in this game and have, thus, retired from the endeavor.
Acting toward one another with civility nourishes us at the most basic levels. Not conducting ourselves in this way, if nothing else, makes the spaces we share toxic, draining unnecessary energy from other more critical tasks at hand. (Like watching a presidential debate and then debating it, again, on your own with anyone around, right?? Forget I said that!)

Like any other noxious chemical, the toxicity of human disrespect and aggression take their toll on our wellbeing, individually and collectively. This alone, if for no other reason, is just motivation for each and every one of us heed how we conduct ourselves, inside and outside of our homes, workplaces, community centers and so forth.

To bring this point home, look for news on our local "Overcoming The Polarization of Politics" event, inspired by New Horizons Possible Human, Possible Society Study and sponsored by us in cooperation with other of our local organizations.

Kickoff event scheduled now for Tuesday, October 30 at Hood College, Frederick, Maryland. Community-wide civility is the theme!
Sue, New Horizons board member and Curriculum Development Director, designing a recent program for our new Bus Ride Story Adventure series with me, kept bringing us round to this point for an anticipated community dialogue project. Two primary questions for program participants emerged.

  1. Do you believe that how we treat one another makes any significant difference in the solving of our national problems?
  2.  If you believe this to be true, how do the ways in which we treat one another make a difference?

Between us, synergistic collaborators that we are, our planning discussions reached a higher plane as we explored these questions and their relevance for our forthcoming program. Inspired by what came of our behind-the-scenes conversing, before long I started bringing these question into my Possible Human, Possible Society Study interviews.
Right away people started responding to the first question in the affirmative. “Of course, they said, how we treat one another makes a difference in the solving of our national problems.”
BTW, regarding question number 2, surprise, surprise, almost no one was able to give me a direct, on the spot answer.  It was as if I had opened the door to a topic that people were agreeing on, in principle, without having much idea of the how and/or the why of the principle, much less the undeveloped human capacities to carry this principle out in day-to-day life.
While we now invite you to consider your own answers to these two questions, allow me to offer thoughts that came to me, personally, on the subject.
Our human resources are probably the single, most vital resource we have to build and sustain the underlying framework of our lives and our country; the very infrastructure of our human existence. And, truth be told this resource is everywhere around us.
Right? So we should make liberal use of this commodity and use it well!
One way I experience the magnificence of this resource in my life as a truism that offsets even the noise of the election campaigning and the toxicity it breeds  is that the people in my life are part of the essential fabric of my life, like a patchwork quilt, so to speak, keeping me warm as nights grow cold.
I think of things like this when a crisp, sunny day like today can combine the pleasure of a walk on our up and down mountain road with my neighbor, a chat with other neighbors as we stroll along – and -- a freeze warning tonight up here in the mountains where we live before our trees have even begun to turn. A walk like this eases whatever else might distract me from the harmony of life. Campaign or no campaign, a respite like this is a tonic for whatever else might ail me. And, totally free!
Tonight we think of warmth up here in the mountains as we start the heat firing up in our wood burning stoves, long before we expected when it is not yet even Halloween.

No comments:

Post a Comment