collective wisdom
collective wisdom bookkey concepts
collective wisdom book

Key Concepts:
Six Stances * Power Over vs Power With * Proving What We Know * Polarization is a Wound * Creating Fields of Belonging * Mindfulness Practice

Mindfulness Practice

We saw in Tom Hurley’s description of the Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance the creation of space for awakening curiosity in the “other” and allowing new agreements to become possible. We saw, particularly in the ways that polarization and false agreements have led to tragedy, the dangers of collapsing the space for inquiry. In the last decade, we have witnessed an explosion of group methodologies and processes that seek to make visible the “wisdom” that is among us and coming through us. These methodologies include various forms of dialogue; organizational interventions such as Appreciative Inquiry and stakeholder engagement; and avenues through which groups can catalyze new insights, such as those developed by our colleagues Juanita Brown and David Isaacs in the format of the World Café.

Fundamental to all these group methodologies is a response to the need to be understood. Anyone who has worked with children knows how deeply rooted this human impulse is. It goes beyond individual temperament or mood. Being understood is akin to experiencing love, and being mindful of this need for understanding brings our attention automatically to how we impact others. Actions as simple as spending an extra moment greeting others and showing our regard for them create the conditions in which they can feel safe and more open to exploration.

pdf of the full text, including full set of Practices

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collective wisdom book
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