Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Cultural Upheaval

(Also posted on Anastasia The Storyteller)

Individuals, relationships and families, as well as nations, are built upon the scripts they develop as blueprints for carrying out the essential tasks of life. When these scripts or life blueprints are disrupted upheaval results, be it personal or cultural, bringing with this disturbance an existential void – and – the accompanying panic that one’s very mortal survival is at risk.

Scripts are naturally created to aid humans in resolving basic existential challenges; most fundamentally these involve answering core questions such as:

1. Who am I?
2. Who are you?
3. What is everybody doing here?
4. And, of singular importance – “What am I supposed to do in a place like this, with people like you?
Future Shock, as Alvin Toffler wrote of it more than forty years ago, predicted the existential void we humans would encounter when our traditions, even the minimal ones practiced in a new country such as the U.S.A., would be threatened into demise by the fast moving pace of our lives.
“Future shock” is no longer off in the future. Future shock is now! And, it is driving us into an an insane way of life. One of the key symptoms of this malaise is the “othering” that we do when we join in with the prevalent cultural practice I call “othering.”

I do it. You do it. We all do it, even when we, oftentimes, consciously believe we do not. Othering is the opposite of “happening to one another” (a topic you might begin exploring here.) Beyond the cost to the individual is the enormous cost to our society, as a collective, and beyond that, again, even to the death and destruction carried forth over this entire planet that “othering” breeds.
Do, please, join me this week as I host the Possible Society In Motion Show and explore this issue with our “Consciously choosing to travel with “others” topic.

This show has as its intent the generating of engaging community conversations, along with storytelling, to help, collectively, pave the way to awe.

Awe meaning, at least, win-win problem solving which, frequently, begins with letting go of our “othering.”

Check it out, the Possible Society In Motion Show.
Thursday, 6:30 p.m

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


The fog outside my window is so thick at this moment that one can barely see one’s own hand. Let alone a tree or the road to drive upon.

In some ways the fog outside is as enveloping in its limited visibility as is my ability to recount where I have been these past weeks and months; it all feels somewhat hazy to me.

The fog in my mind rolled in with Hurricane Sandy and it has yet to clear. Hurricane Sandy sent me away from my home for fear of what the storm might do; high winds especially threatened to endanger a few of our already tenuously held trees that could potentially fall and hit the house.

Back home, after the storm hit, the cold state of our eerily-abandoned house took some time to heat and bring things right again; to unpack the emergency provisions so hastily gathered in the leave-taking. In the meantime, the Overcoming The Polarization of Politics event that had been scheduled for the evening Sandy hit had by then been  cancelled; the other organizers and myself adrift in a turbulent sea of end of election campaign hoopla, election day and night and the after elections blame games and so forth, as our once-again elected president emerged victorious.

By the time all of this had passed and our event had been rescheduled with its resultant loss of momentum, coming off after the election as opposed to before it as originally planned, predictions of the end of the world was the big news, scheduled for late December. This, too, somehow also soon faded away and the tragic deaths of the many children who had so innocently lost their lives at Newtown took over both the world of cyberspace and painful reality.
On the heels of these twists and turns, New Horizons, of which I am both Founder and Executive Director,  determined that it was time to create an expanded venue for up-to-date reports on our Possible Human, Possible Society Study and our collection of good works in the area of community development, by offering, not one but two new radio shows. So off I was sent to Blog Talk Radio University to learn new skills for a new kind of radio of which I had never heard before.

Alongside of this happening, my collaborator of close to seven years, Sue deVeer, moved out of state, leaving me somewhat behind. So is it any surprise that as I awoke this morning to the fog surrounding me outside that I felt called to wonder, as I looked out at the pea-soup, if there was, indeed, anything familiar left beyond my bedroom walls?
The dear ones I’ve left behind on this almost five month trek through my odyssey are no more or less intact than I, having been hit by most of the same influences. Yet, adrenalin-infused days of world-level upheaval, crisis and chaos have become so much the norm, people barely notice it. But, I, sensitized by blindness to a heightened sense of feeling and inner seeing, do.

So this is our brave new world; the Future Shock Alvin Toffler predicted in the early 1970s. Days, weeks and lives whiz by so rapidly a person can barely find themselves genuinely standing in the same place from moment to moment. Thus that which had become the normal human adjusting to change is barely realistic.
This is our brave new world!

I think it rather frightening, but have little time for fear before the next wave of turbulence hits. How about you?
On my side, expect to hear more and more from New Horizons and myself about the importance of our human connections; on my two radio shows and here.

After all, a human life does, typically, while not lasting as long as an elephant, last somewhat longer than the latest internet promoted scandal or horror.
So I tend to think of people as being amongst the most valued of investments.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Time Out, Time In

Radio Show Commentary

Our still new radio show, the Possible Society In Motion Show, is now two and one-half months old, going on three.  In the early days, weeks and months in the life of a newborn, we tend to carefully watch growth and movements. The slightest change is noted.

We are excited, easily roused to concern. Sometimes fearful, reacting to innocuous events as though mortal danger lurks. No wonder the parents of newborns need the grant of maternity leave.

Dishes pile up in the sink. Laundry, other than the barest of essentials, is ignored. Time flies by, with whole days gone before one knows it -- and -- if the newcomer is the first in its family, so much more the challenge.

So goes my time these days; mother to a “newborn” radio show; something different each day that, sometimes, only a mother can see. Or the closest and most devoted of family and friends (i.e. my loyal board members and our growing volunteer team).

If and when you hear our stories of this time, you, too, will appreciate the steadfastness of those helping to birth this new project so that we can provide and you can benefit from our treasure trove of gifts for you. Some of which are --

·         Small “Zones of Peace” principles you can apply to your own personal and community   development projects;
·         Tips  to refine your active efforts in the areas of society and politics and conflict resolution;
·         New Horizons’ program developments in progress.

The Possible Society In Motion Show
Thursday, March 14, 6:30 – 7:30 pm.
Topic: Consciously Choosing To Travel With Others
On-air and conference call-in discussion or after on podcast.
 (See Blog Talk Radio links on the right hand of this page for podcasts.)
Hosted by: Anastasia Rosen-Jones