Tuesday, 21 April 2009
Knowing where you've been is just as important as knowing where you're going. I've had cause to reflect on the notion of birthright and genetic heritage following my father's 80th Birthday last weekend. It's not so much a case of where do we come from as who do we come from! Tracing your family heritage is a fascinating insight into the threads of DNA that inform your perceptions and judgements today. It's inescapable. We are - all of us - locked in to a particular strata of time and space. But we are also linked to surprising treasures from the past, just as we have the capacity to weave our stories of tomorrow. There is a reflective wisdom in viewing yourself as the outcome of many lives lived by family ancestors, don't you think?
Saturday, 18 April 2009
"It's a recession Jim, but not as we know it!' This low demand environment is not from another galaxy. It's probably the "new normal". So where to from here? I've been reflecting on intention lately. Everything starts with an intention and nothing can proceed without it. But intention carries both a force and a direction - it's a vector. For any decision we carry competing intentional vectors. The resultant vector dictates what actually happens rather than what we wish to happen. The key is to get very clear about your intentions, both positive and negative, so you can better align with what you choose. This will increase the probability of seeing the means to achieve that choice.
Tuesday, 14 April 2009
Listening to Professor Warwick McKibbin at the Wednesday Lunch at the Lowy Institute last week I was struck by how the GFC can be understood as an "underlying debilitating disease" with the first symptoms dating back to 1997. Professor McKibbin stepped through the "major shocks" from the Asia Crisis (1997/98) through to the collapse of Lehman Brothers in late 2008. But the truly "Big Shock" has been a "synchronized loss of confidence". And now the number one policy for government agencies around the world is to "instill confidence!" Makes you realize how fragile we are doesn't it? You can read more at: www.sensiblepolicy.com
Friday, 3 April 2009
The GFC. How far is the "tide going out", and when will it come back? Sobering statistics at the Australia China Business Council meeting I attended last night. Some Chinese constructions firms have seen demand go down to 20% (not down BY 20%, but down TO 20%)! The Chinese have never experienced a recession and they're worried. The view was put that such a dramatic fall in demand will take years to return, if ever. We have just entered a new era of low demand. This is the new normal. The tide has gone out and perhaps we won't see it come back, at least not to the same level it was before.
Wednesday, 1 April 2009
We hosted breakfast yesterday with Ven Robina Courtin, an Australian Buddhist Nun with a fiery inquisitiveness and a laser intelligence! Ven Robina is also the founder of the Liberation Prison Project, based in San Francisco. What is wisdom, I asked? It is the clarity of mind that comes from removing delusion, she said. All our anger, frustration and panic that arise when "attachment doesn't get what it wants" are delusions of the "I". When we begin to notice these attachments and practice separating from them, then we begin to see what's going on around us more clearly. Wisdom-in-action is simply evidence of this. We all have the capacity for wisdom, although each of us will demonstrate varying wisdom-ability. It depends on how much inner work we have done "removing the pollution from the water"!