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April 27, 2005

Possible Application of Values with Leadership

The development of human consciousness requires that the minimum elements of survival and self worth to be met. If these are not met then engaging in even the most basic human interaction is difficult if not impossible. Decision making, let alone informed values-based decision making, is primitive at best. How can you be in a position to demand a minimum of change for the better if you do not have a good sense of self.This is a minimum requirement for learning! In order for the student to engage in comprehensive, values-based decision making, requires that the lower stages be met. What would it take to create an environment that was not just desired by most but a moral requirement. What we are talking about is installing a world-wide, educational meaning system. Some places it may be easier than others. But it can be done. Sustainable change takes time. Values-based decision making is worth it.

For this, we need to look at the development of the human being. The levels of consciousness of the human being are going to get mirrored in the way weorganize.The decision making is usually going to be done in the context of a group of some type. Both in the educational institution, as well as any other social grouping the student may encounter.In some ways, we need to imagine what does the basic sustainable human being look like, what is the meaning system that puts this person in the best place for accessing their potential for fulfillment.

From Survival to Self Worth to (Being) Self

Being is about arriving at a place where a person has the best understanding of how to actualize their own personal fulfillment. Developmentally, this not an easy place to get to. However, there are basic components that must be in place before we can even think about this. A totally evolved planetary consciousness would have all the people in the world with the potential of getting access to their own being. But we are still talking about baby steps, in an educational setting this can likely be accelerated.

The cornerstones of this journey are Survival, Self Worth and Being (Self). One cannot hope to progress as a human being if one cannot get basic needs met. But one cannot progress if they do not feel that I am worthy of something better. It is these two items (survival and self worth) that must be part of the foundation values-based decision making.

Creation of a comprehensive educational deployment requires that we build up the self worth of the individual. They must feel that they are worthy of the respect of being provided. This is easier said than done. Self worth is often expressed culturally. Therefore, their needs to be a common framework for establishing self worth but it should take into account the issues in a given culture.
Awareness is also important. If I know what is going on around me, I can make informed decisions. If I know how friends and peers feel, I will likely not feel alone.

Leadership and Accountability (Mutual)

Awareness is important for the person. But awareness is also about being explicit. When things are no longer hidden, when they are explicit, it is harder for those in power to ignore the needs of the many. Being explicit about the needs and desire of the populace is an important way for leaders to be held accountable. Their actions are measured against the wishes of the people and culture. Leadership without accountability creates a misuse of power. This brings values-based decision making to the forefront. The global consciousness needs to create a leadership environment that focuses on leadership and not on management. There are plenty of people that that are good at deployment. However, creating an effective, and yet collaborative leadership environment is needed and imperative. Telling others in the world what to do will not work, but creating the environment where the vision can be accomplished is imperative. Leadership and decision making go hand in hand.
This awareness also creates a framework of systemic ethics. When intervening to create a new consciousness, the development of this system needs to provide for the needs of the whole. Awareness is essential to this.

From Clan to Global-State

Throughout history, man has had a tendency to create relationships in order to get more and more complicated things done. One started with the family or the clan (or in more modern terms a team or group). Man had to learn how to best organize this to accomplish goals such as killing a mastodon. As these tribes grew, and people became more specialized, cities and towns developed. Each time these occurred, it took time for the man to adapt and work these relationships. These groups would also get a sense of self. A sense of ownership of and for the group. You progressed to the city-state and then to the nation-state. The sense of self at the level of the nation-state is what we call patriotism. It is good for creating a sense of group-self but it can create differences with other such groups. Andconflict and war can arise from this. Using a values approach as students move into the world is imperative.

Educational institutions would find the possibilities expansive, as well as the research that could be done and shared inter-institutionally that would give invaluable knowledge of values-development globally.

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April 26, 2005



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April 11, 2005

Can you see my house from here?

Here is an interesting tool from Flickr beta & GoogleMaps beta.

Here is my house :-)

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April 9, 2005

Onward and Upward

Our goal was to come together to meet, to see if we might possibly be good friends -- leaving other stuff open; I was just glad to be meeting someone that I already had some much in common. Both being an (I)ntrovert on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator; we both wanted friends. However, online and over the phone we had flirted.

I arrived a little early. And was waiting, a little nervous, after all, whatever the reason -- this was a date. We did not play pool and both had sodas :-) really, I swear. We ended up talking for a couple of hours. For some reason, I had one hell of a time looking her in the eyes. I suppose it could have been anxiousness, the implications of meeting someone, and yes, maybe some guilt. But the feeling for me was like she was looking into my soul. You might say that I was a little self conscious. She kept kind of not letting me off the hook about it. She was good about that. As we left, we talked about meeting again. I shook her hand, and we decided we would. At that point, I began to realize that I was going know her for a long time as a friend. A little over four months from my wife filing for divorce, I was in a relationship to stay.

Next we met at a place for lunch that has tri-tip sandwiches; we had a good time talking. I was getting better at looking at her in the eye. As we finished, we decided to go over to the pool hall and actually played pool this time. For good or for bad, it brought out a competive streak which I had to temper. But it was clear that we liked to do things, and to not hold back (too much).

One of things I began to realize, was that I was different man at 40 than I was in my twenties. It is hard to explain. I realized that I must have friends. This not negotiable. I had some significant breakdowns (will not go into it here at the moment). My wife, showed concern then quickly dropped it (the concern). It was at this point, through a friend (happened to be gay) and my therapist that anyone that would be telling me who my friends could be was not in my best interest. No guys, they might be gay, no women you might be having an affair (I was working at a job where I worked in close quarters with a number of women -- none of which I was involved with.) For that matter, my wife never even visited me at work.

A slight diversion, but might be enlightening, is that friends, counselors (marriage and otherwise) felt we might have switched the "classing" male and female roles. I was the relationship person that needed intimacy with friends and family and particularly a significant other. She was one that worried about details, controlled around money, and did not show much emotion.

It was interesting that one week after she filed it was her 40th birthday. She gets her ears pierced, wearing tighter clothes and jewelry. To be fair, both of us had lost 10-15 pounds due to stress. Clearly she was striking out in a direction, and whether she knew it or not she did not seem to be taking me with her. Like it her or not, she did look good. But it was definitely done for my benefit. 40 can do that to you.

I hate to say it, but the different cloths had been unraveling for a bit. Sitting here, I feel kind of torn, here is a person I was with for half my life, that I loved, and still love in many ways. But for which I know, I cannot be with anymore. and I have moved on from some time ago. When I emotionally let go, that was it. I mourn, but I do not regret.

My new friend invited me to her house for dinner. I told my wife I was going out to dinner with a friend. Which was strictly true, but I was not happy about this white lie. A few months before, I had come to grips with the fact that my father was often not truthful (lying) in order to avoid conflict. I started realizing that I had been doing this. Oh, I could rationalize this away, but I was not telling the truth or at least not the whole truth. So not telling my wife was hurting, I also needed to work on this new friendship.

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Looking Back to Go Forward

It has been over a year since my wife of 17.5 (at the time) years filed for divorce. She claims that it did not mean any thing, that it was to protect her and would help make me change (though it was not clear what she wanted me todo). I beg to differ. We had our ups and downs as most people do. We had many interests, but I guess ultimately we were built from different cloth. It is hard to say for sure, hindsight is 20/20. At some point, I might recount some of the events that led up to this stage in our lives. Let's just say that neither side is perfect. And when I get the nerve up, I might go into it more.

Things had been bad for a few years, having kids (this late -- late thirties) did not help. However, it is easy to think that this is all a waste (so many years of marriage). I sometimes think about this.But then I remember that this is a relationship that produced my children. I have three kids (Grant, and the twins: Rachel and Paige), they are wonderful, and they were produced by my wife and myself (therein lies another issue). We also had some great times. These kids I will always cherish (the good times also that I spent with my wife). For these, I thank my wife (soon to be Ex-). (This is getting harder to wite than I thought, did not think this bring me to tears.) I think this is why we (I) do this, a catharsis, a looking back, in order to move forward.

I am on a plane back from India. Going to and from India, and long flights, has a way of making one thoughtful. Up until shortly after my wife filed, I would not have even imagined that I would not be married (through thick and thin, etc.) Thinking of this as a blip (a serious one), but a blip none the less. I was recounting some of my troubles to a friend and colleague, and I remember her words as clear as the day she said them, "Life's too Short". It did not sink in at first. I am a very relationship driven, emotional person. It hit me, I had not really had intimacy with my wife for more than 2 years. I am not talking about the sex here. She whould would not share anything about her life with me. This lack of sharing really hurt (not realizing it). Even withdrawing from my friends in how it was affecting me. I had some friends that she did not like (they were gay or women, etc.). I needed to take control and make sure that my life was going in a direction that was positive for me.

I needed to get some friends (though later realized I also really needed to reacquaint myself with old friends). I looked online like Yahoo, Tickle, etc). I live in the North Bay in California. I had no friends locally whom I might see on a regular basis. I had a few friends but the were more like acquaintances. Not ones that you would want to be at all share deeply or vulnernable with. I really not had a way to meet people that made sense. I was 40, and pretty lame for someone who cherishes good friends. Since this was not about dating, options seemed very unclear.

I had made been looking around, listing myself online as wanting some good friends, etc. I saw a person online that had done some of the Tickle tests and that on first blush was similar to me. We were talking through e-mail for a bit. And one of us, I do not remember who, connected through Tickle's chat function. We found that was frustrating, and moved to Yahoo IM. I should probably mention at this point, it was a woman. We talked on line for some time -- 3-4 days. We had so much in common that it was scary, both for the coincidence of similarities, and for the potential for a friendship that would be doomed because of too much of seeing the other in them. But it was worth a try.

We spoke once or twice on the phone, and agreed to meet. At a pool hall of all places, we both liked playing pool ;-).

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Going to India

I went to India. A week later than I had planned. Turns out that I needed a visa and I had not bothered to check. It did not even enter my consciousness that I might need a visa. Oops. I left on March 18 rather than March 11. I got the visa on Monday after the 11th. I had not been to India so this was going to be interesting and a bit of an adventure. I am going to Hyderabad. Other than some tourism (as my visa states ;-) ), I am going to meet with Sridhar Reddy of Aadhya. His company is starting to do some programming, etc. for some projects for which I am beginning to be involved. I was seting up the relationship, and to work on specs. I believe in relationship before task, so going to India was important. One of the things that I was struck by, was the incredible hospitality and courtesy that I received everywhere that I went (on the street, stores, restaurants, etc.). My experience at the hotel (Taj Banjara) was just unreal. It seemed that everyone new your name.

There was the poverty that one associates with India, however, in some ways it was not as bad as I thought it might be. But it is still hard to not feel for the people that are in the condition they are in. Sridhar, my host was incredibly gracious and wanted me to have the best expereince that I could. (Another interesting expereince that I had was that people took great pride in their city.) Sridhar and I did well at balancing work and leisure. Not an experience that I always receive on business trips. While it was great to be home, the trip left me with a sense of history and good experiences.

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Buster Hall b. 1991 - d. 3/30/2005

It is a time of sadness for the Hall's. One of our dogs, Buster, passed away. We got him in 1992. He was about one when we adopted him. 14 years is a long time but it does not hurt any less. He leaves behind Martin, Carol, Grant, Paige, Rachel, Brownie and Scruffy. We know he is in a better place, he was in so much pain at the end. Carol, who had never had a dog, decided that it would be good for a dog to be around because my work at the time kept me home much of the time. We started looking in the paper, at the pound, etc. Carol saw a classified for a Boxer-St.Bernard mix. Well, she had to see it. It turns out it was more of a Spaniel-Boxer mix. We fell in love with "Bandit" the dog, not the name. He was christened Buster. It turns out we had seen him at the pound. He had been rescued him from certain death, and wa meant for us. We will miss him greatly. But we remember him for the undying love he gaves us for so many years.

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