Tuesday, 28 July 2009
Just finished reading John Gray's 2007 book, "Black Mass". He is Professor of European Though at the London School of Economics. I met him briefly at the Sydney Writer's Festival last year. Gray contends that much of the destructive history of the Twentieth Century and beyond can be blamed on our religious and political desire for Utopia - a mythical "perfect" future. At the core is "my willingness to defend to the death my idea of Utopia over yours!" We need to learn to be more realistic, says Gray. Life is inherently uncertain and history can just as likely go backwards as forwards. "Religions are not claims to knowledge but ways of living with what cannot be known", he says. There is no Utopia. "Interacting with the struggle for natural resources" concludes Gray, "the violence of faith looks set to shape the coming century".
Wednesday, 22 July 2009
Can you feel it? Our emotional "tectonic plates" have been shifting. The Global Financial Crisis was the earthquake we had to have. It signaled the release of hard, rigid, "me-first" forces that had been building for some time. Something had to give. And we're all feeling the after-shocks. But sooner or later the same tectonic forces will settle into a new equilibrium. Which doesn't necessarily mean "better"! But it does mean "different". What does this new emotional landscape hold for us?
Friday, 17 July 2009
I saw Mark Scott, CEO of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, deliver a keynote presentation at the first Australian Leadership & Coaching Conference for Educators at Macquarie University on Tuesday. "The Greek playwright, Euripides maintained there are only 4 stories", he said. "A man and a woman; a woman and two men; betrayal; and a journey". "Leadership is a journey" he said. What's your story?
Wednesday, 15 July 2009
At the first Australian Leadership & Coaching Conference for Educators at Macquarie University yesterday, I was struck by a comment from Dr Doug Reeves, founder of The Leadership and Learning Center, Boston, USA. He said we only have 3 choices for action: " (1) Wait until the action is perfect; (2) do nothing; or (3) try something, even if it's imperfect". Life is short. Have a go!