Attractor – Summer Institute

July 2, 2011. 

I’m flying to Gatwick this afternoon and will arrive early tomorrow morning. The time change is seven hours. I’ll spend the day with Alan, a close friend and fellow philiosopher.  Around 5 p.m.  in the afternoon I’ll catch a flight for Copenhagen.  The Taos Institute is hosting a summer series on systems thinking and positivity. The first experience I had with this organization was about five years ago when I attended a four day Appreciative Inquiry Course with David Cooperider in Carmel, California.  

Since then the thinking I was doing has developed and accelerated  my approach to community change, and help me begin to craft a different way of being in the world.   Since then I continue to explore how communities and organizations evolve and devolve, what stalls positive change and what helps it grow.

Society is vastly unaware of how language and thought shapes our future. Most can’t see the dynamics and organic processes the exist just below the surface of conversation.  The subtle interplay of process, language, emotion, and unconscious desire for knowing on our human experience create our future. 

My work is to bring a level of awareness to this interplay, to help the people and organizations I’m involved with become reflexive about the dynamics at work.  To understand how the language we choose to use internally or externally, our inner voice and outer voice, will alter these dynamics and therefore the future. 

Without bringing reflexivity into our present concsiousness we hold back creativity, innovation and paradigmatic shifts in human consciousness that presently struggles for life and that need to survive.  The unquenchable societal  hunger for certainty and the fear of change, cripples creativity and the ability to adapt. 

Many if not most of the  institutions in our present and our history, from governmental, to military, to religious and even to family, are rooted in certainty. Although bright stars do exist, our reflexive ability needs nurturing.  Our future needs require us to shift the way we use language in the positive direction. Away from problem solving to life giving creativity.  Our reliance on past thinking must be questioned, the good exacted and built upon, the inflexible and certain replaced with possibility and uplifting questioning. We need real focus on purpose. 

I’m thrilled to be able to take these eight days to explore thoughts and refocus my efforts to be both part of the systems at work and at the same time outside an conscious of them. It’s my goal to blog however briefly my experiences and reflections during the conference. 

1 comment to Attractor – Summer Institute

  • Judy

    Erudite as usual, Paul. Bob did marriage and family therapy using systems theory. Just FYI.

    Looking forward to reading more about your journey. Judy

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