Doing things this way, for me, is part and parcel of the awareness path and of consciousness-raising.
That being said, I’ve lived most of my life as a hermit and have brought tendencies with me into the “real” world that were formed out of years of solitude and aren’t necessarily the most productive or workable.
Because our missions are important, the stakes have gone up from a few decades ago in the experiments I run, their outcomes, and the improvements I seek.
I face the same ever-increasing need that many of us do – to play an always-expanding role. Therefore I’m less inclined these days to accept the kind of haphazard results I might have been satisfied with in years gone by.
At this moment the focus of my attention is on my communication.
Ury and Fischer, in Getting to Yes, spoke about principle-based negotiation. What they were saying, if I understand them correctly, was that successful negotiations between two parties depended on basing them on principles rather than personalities; that is, on universal realities rather than on whims, desires, agendas, etc. Today we call these “principles” the “divine qualities.”
Perhaps I can give an illustration from my hearing-room experience. In a sense, a hearing is a negotiation when viewed from some perspectives (not from others).
I’ve said before that, when I presided over a refugee-determination hearing, I used to mentally place a set of the scales of justice between me and the claimant. This set of scales was based on a small clock that my ex-wife gave me when I was appointed a Member of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada. The small clock was embedded in the base of a miniature set of the scales of justice.
I used to imagine the scales of justice in front of me to remind myself to make all my communications fair. In my view, fairness was the principle that prevailed in the justice system.
There are other “principles” or “divine qualities” which we’ve been asked to use to weigh our thoughts, words, and deeds against – love, compassion, generosity.
However unlike in past times, we actually really need to act on the matter now and not just have it be a good thing to do one day, some day. The events that we’re engaged in nowadays require that we begin to base our thoughts, words and deeds on these divine principles or qualities.
I’d like to look at some of them as applied to communication in the next few articles in this series.
(Continued in Part 2.)