Self-Evident Concepts

“It’s never too late to do something.”
Ai Wei Wei

“But now we must ask, ‘How can the social movement be incorporated into democratic life?”
Rudolf Steiner, “The Threefold Social Organism, Democracy and Socialism” The Renewal of the Social Organism (1919)

“The business that leaders are in today is the business of transforming awareness. There is a deep longing for more meaning. For connections.” – C. OTTO SCHARMER, who designed Theory U 

“In our time too much power falls upon the state. It is an evolutionary necessity today to change this. We can progress only if people become conscious that the workings of society take place in three quite different systems, the boundaries of which need to be clearly defined.” 
– RUDOLF STEINER, The Renewal of the Social Organism

A year ago, on May 9, 2019 the trajectory of the woke CEO’s of the 80’s and the so-called integral/meta-modern social movements of right now 2020 converge with the Integral European Conference announcing “Otto Scharmer joins the IEC world with Theory U” :

“The Theory of U and the U process have become increasingly popular among Integral practitioners in recent years, and though it is not based on Integral Theory itself, it is one of the many other approaches that Integral folks seems to love and use often. It is an approach in which more and more people are waking up to a deeper level of awareness, which can become a turning point for a new creative process, a new reality in life. It is a framework and a language that allows us to communicate about that deeper level of experience that many of us have but usually don’t talk about because it is not part of normal discussion in organizations and other parts of society.” ~ Integral European Conference

 [First Steiner and then Wilber each] “point to the emergence of new ways of thinking that could address the complex critical challenges of our planetary moment.” ~ Jennifer Gidley, “The Evolution of Consciousness as a Planetary Imperative: An Integration of Integral Views”, Integral Review (2007)

“The business that leaders are in today is the business of transforming awareness. There is a deep longing for more meaning. For connections.” – C. OTTO SCHARMER, who designed Theory U 

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” ~ Viktor Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning (1946)

“WE ARE AS GODS and might as well get good at it. So far, remotely done power and glory – as via government, big business, formal education, church – have succeeded to the point where gross defects obscure actual gains. In response to this dilemma and to these gains, a realm of intimate, personal power is developing – the power of individuals to conduct their own education, find their own inspiration, shape their own environment, and share the adventure with whoever is interested.” ~ Stewart Brand, WHOLE LIFE CATALOG  in 1968 by way of introducing an emergent civil society. 

“Many otherwise smart and business savvy people are operating from a theoretical base that is simply out of date. … The old management theories were attractive because they were straightforward and not laden with any ambiguity or paradox. On the other hand the world isn’t like that. We find it fascinating that the world of science is proceeding in paradoxical directions hauntingly similar to those we are observing and hypothesizing for the world of management theory. For example, light was first thought of as particles. Then the sciences found that light behaves like waves. However as soon as the wave view was adopted, new evidence for the particle theory poured in. But if light really is particulate, it ought to have mass, and then it couldn’t travel at the speed of light. Which of course it does. Heisenberg showed that you could know either the position of a subatomic particle or its mass, but not both at the same time. So here we see the most rational of disciplines, physics, rushing headlong through the looking glass of ambiguity, with atomic physicists using terms like “charm”, “strangeness’, “antimatter” and “quark” to describe particles.”~ Tom Peters, Chapter 4: “Managing Ambiguity and Paradox”, In Search of Excellence:  Lessons from America’s Best-Run Companies (1982)

“The United States’ educational system is failing to meet the national need for a competitive workforce.” ~ The 1983 report “A Nation at Risk” during the Reagan presidency

““We are at that very point in time when a 400-year-old age is dying and another is struggling to be born—-a shifting of culture, science, society, and institutions enormously greater than the world has ever experienced.”; “A people that cannot govern itself cannot be governed.” ~ Dee Hock

“what happens to democracy when the people have been driven mad by television?” ~ John Perry Barlow, WIRED,(1996)

“The book, Disclosing New Worlds: Entrepreneurship, Democratic Action, and the Cultivation of Solidarity (MIT Press, 1997) … [draws] on the existential percept that the meaningful life is one of commitment … making history …pursuing an activity that changes people’s lives thoughts or behaviors … Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), Martin Luther King… By this definition, has Flores himself made history? Certainly not on the level of a Steve Jobs or MLK. But he has made one clear contribution: demonstrating how the deliberate practice of conversation can transform even a hidebound bureaucracy into a network of trust, one speech act at a time.” –  Lawrence M. Fisher, “Fernando Flores Wants to Make You and Offer”, strategy + business, (November 24, 2000)

Heard at Bioneers:

  • “The ‘healthy food’ movement is bigger than ‘food’: it has political impact.” – MICHAEL POLLAN
  • “Cities are the great incubators of the new, not the political state….what is done by the ‘nation’ gets bigger and bigger – grows out of bounds” – JAMES HILLMAN
  • “The voice of the mother is now also a political voice … there is a deep bias against mothers.” – PEGGY O’MARA (Mothering Magazine)
  • “We have created a culture that is purposefully damaging to our children.” – GARY RUSKIN (Commercial Alert)
  • “We are stars in the form of humans”, “Do we receive guidance from the universe?”, “Questions scientists ask about ‘EMERGENCE’: ‘how come we are?; what is IT that breathes fire into the equasion?; why is there something instead of nothing?” – BRIAN SWIMME
  • “Yes we can leverage our privilege for social change … I am PRIVILEGED to serve … Do we have the right to speak if we have never been oppressed? … OCEAN ROBBINS
  • “Gangs are not the problem. It’s self-esteem of kids – mental, physical, alcohol abuse; in Beverly Hills, same deal, it manifests as suicide.. White folks know what’s up in the hood. Same in their hood. Sex abuse and drug and alcohold abuse masked in wealthy communities – its our on the lawn in poor hoods.” – AQUEELA SHERRILS (Forgiveness Project)

“In our time too much power falls upon the state. It is an evolutionary necessity today to change this. We can progress only if people become conscious that the workings of society take place in three quite different systems, the boundaries of which need to be clearly defined.” ~ RUDOLF STEINER, The Renewal of the Social Organism

This new school shall really be established for what is needed now and in the immediate future for the development of humanity. And, in truth, all that ultimately flows from these concerns into the being of teaching and education creates a threefold sacred responsibility.

People need to become a conscious self, to keep learning, and to work together socially. Cultivating these three capacities to flow together constructively is the sublime promise of teachers and educators in the service to society which they perform working with the awakening, growing human child!

All we can know about humanity and about the world will only become fruitful if we can pass it on in a living way to those who will form the social world when we  ourselves are no longer present.  

All human artistic creation will reach its highest point only if we can let it flow into the greatest art, in which materials are not lifeless clay and color but living people, as yet unfinished, who we, in a certain way, will complete artistically and educationally. 

And is it not, in conclusion, a transcendent, solemn, sacred duty, one of the ultimate magnitude, to care for the education of each human being who is born, who appears anew and reveals themselves? Is not this educational service a awe-inspiring ritual in the highest sense of the word? Must not all our most sublime human strivings – precisely those devoted to evolving ourselves into a wiser, kinder, and productive species  – flow together in the sanctuary service which we perform as we seek to further in the developing child, the essential spirit which reveals its presence in humanity!

~  Rudolf Steiner is speaking on the essential role of teachers for a healthy society at the opening celebration of the first Waldorf school on September 7, 1919. My source is Spiritual Gifts for the Educator: From the work of Rudolf Steiner by Helmut von Kugelegen. He says that the verse is included in the German version of DStudy of Man but not in the English translation. The verse below is in the booklet in English but clumsily translated, so I redid it in a way that could be shared with any teacher. (Joan Jaeckel)