The Deeper Work and Training of the 2007 Summer Intensive in Social Artistry: The World Shift Game and How to Play It.
Let us explore the nature and development of our call to service in ways that link inner and outer realities, universal plans and passionate commitment. But what to do, where to go, how to take initiative, and what is key here, how to understand your role as leader and social artist in this most compelling moment of human history. Ultimately, this is what the Summer Institute in Social Artistry is all about and why the trainings and teachings, sharing and reflections will take you places you never thought to go.
Let us now reflect and consider these learnings in the light of present need and the need for a new kind of leader, a social artist who is also artful of the ways of the inner land – scape.
I say this especially in the light of present conditions and lack of leadership. T oo many of the problems in societies today stem, in part, from leadership that is ill prepared to deal with present complexity. This is not just a matter of inadequate training in the realities of global change, but even more tragically, a lack of human resourcefulness, leaders living out of a field of awareness that is both limited and limiting in their abilities to deal with the world as it is today. Worldwide, societies are crying for assistance in the transformation of their citizens, organizations, and institutions. But sadly, the preparation of leaders who can rise to this challenge is hampered by training that leaves the greatest of the students natural resources unexplored and insufficient. The leader, like most of society, emerges as a highly compromised version of what he or she could be. And the state of the world reflects this in a most dangerous way. The density and intimacy of the global village and the staggering consequences of our new knowledge and technologies make us directors of a world that has, up to now , mostly directed us. What is alarming is the absence of social artists (i.e., skilled facilitators, entrepreneurs and leaders) to advise and lead the shift to new values and practices. Leader – ship today is caught uncertain and unprepared in the face of too much happening too quickly . Few have been trained for the task of dealing with the complexity and chaos of todays world while at the same time the usual formulas and stopgap solutions born of an earlier era will not help us. As Albert Einstein reminded us, the consciousness that created the problem can – not be the same consciousness that solves it.
Worldwide, societies are crying for assistance in the transformation of their citizens, organizations and institutions. The need is to achieve a new humanity and a new way to nurture the species and nature. The need is to develop the possible human in a possible society . What we will be dealing with in this Summer Intensive in Social Artistry is the art and science of transformation leadership, leadership that is one of the mysteries of the human as he or she lives a life of alignment, refinement and contact to the divine purposes and patterns of evolutionary possibilities. This is the art of world making, spirit catching, mind growing, and soul quaking leadership.
Let us begin with the nature of creation seen now in the light of the social artist Leader as high creative who participates in the art of new creation. Herein, in the mystery of creative leadership we are called to explore the mystery itself as an interface between engagement with external realities and embrace of the inner journey. Creative leader ship especially in the social artist form is contemplative leadership, a vital synergy between inner and outer realities necessary to transform organizations, institutions, paths of possibility , as well as visionary endeavors, and, in so doing, unleashing the human spirit of those who compose the institution or endeavor and of those who are served by this. It is an activity of extraordinary balance, a tension in repose.
Recently, Barry Heermann shared, “For me, the metaphor of a taught rubber band fits perfectly. . . tense, strident, stretched to its limit. At one end of the rubber band is deep solitude, quiet, silence, contemplation, the inner journey and at the other end is radical breakthrough in the world, generating unprecedented service and contribution that changes EVERYTHING, the lives of others, our life. It is like a Zen koan. These seemingly exclusive opposites CAN and DO converge; with the rubber band in its relaxed position.
For me, creative, contemplative Leadership is about a zone in which paradox occurs. It is a space where the sacred emerges and the local self disappears. It is a space of exquisite silence and of extraordinary service. It is a space wherein there is a fusing and blending of silence and service. In such a state one has access to the creative, world making patterns of the universe, and perhaps too, to the place where ones unique entelechy (guiding intelligence) meets the Entelechy of a potential new time, one that gives the details of an evolution in per – son an society.
I have come to believe that the entelechy of the self is the local outcropping of the creative plans of the evolutionary universe. In the ancient Hindu text of the Rig Veda we find the concept of the Purusha –the cosmic human out of whose parts the world and all that it contains are created.
It is the Purusha in one, the resonance of the universe in miniature who yearns to be rent into fibers and factors that can spawn new realities on earth as it is done in heaven. But it also means being constantly renewed grown, not just given away over and over again till there is nothing much left to you. It means regarding the self as sacred, and nurtured accordingly. In this way you are able to nurture the creative seeds in others. One