Holding a Contradiction

At the U-Lab many things came to light for me.

1. To open a process with no specific goal can create a detrimental and stifling experience. When a group gets ‘stuck in the process’ and has no clear goal with which to approach the creative force that is conjured, this can lead to a muddled space. Nicanor Perlas spoke of this during the 3-Fold-Lab in Sweden last year – that without a question you are open to all kinds of detrimental forces during a process, without a question you have no real quest. Your question protects you. In this way I would like to see the question as that which frames the goal of a process. A badly drawn question will not help with this either.

2. “Teaching as creating a context” – Sarah Herne. This actually has a close link with the above, it is the context that informs the question/goal. When teaching, we know some more or less vague goals we want for the children: skill ability, happiness, self-reliance, perseverance, etc. We create a context and from that context come lessons for developing these vague concepts in to specific quests.

3. I have a very strong impulse to hold contradicting forces within myself and am able to do so without discomfort of any sort. When I speak that which is unspoken, I am often literally taken for holding that point of view above the other; I know myself that this is untrue. The truth lives in the in-between – the operative word being ‘lives’. That is, just as I hold this conception of a moral organ, I hold the conception of a living truth. To be able to hold the contradiction, you need to get out of the way and allow your understanding, your mind to move to another way of perceiving. A ‘soft focus’ you could say. To have a soft focus is to see with the periphery rather than from a rigid centre. It is an act of empathy and wilful knowing.

I am glad to have had these insights :)

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One Response to Holding a Contradiction

  1. eva says:

    thank you, dear, for the third insight. that is where i am at the moment, on very different levels. i am practicing giving in to my empathy and willful knowing, if you want to say so… i am thinking about our conversation in berlin right before i left to nicaragua quite often. the idea of learning through tension, “aesthetic experiences”, proved to be a powerful perspective for me. what i particularly like is the light of beauty that it sheds on the state in between, the artistic quality of a situation that can be regarded as ordinary and unwanted so easily.

    i am happy that you write this blog. it gives me the opportunity to be in exchange with you at the other end of the world!

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