Welcome to my blog! For some time now I have had various ideas, thoughts and resources I have wanted to get out for wider discussion and dissemination. Well this is the start!
It’s by no means the final word and there will be much that is 'in process' thinking, but I would be delighted if you could join me in a dialogue with the issues. I would certainly not describe myself as the 'guru' with all the answers and offer the following quotes as inspiration for what I will be sharing. I don't necessarily agree with everything these writers have said, but on these quotes I do agree with them;
"I am not a teacher: only a fellow traveller of whom you asked the way. I pointed the way - ahead of myself as well as you."
- George Bernard Shaw
"If I am able to see further than them, it only comes from being able to stand on their shoulders and not because of anything about me."
- Isaac Newton
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the weakest might err."
- Mahatma Gandhi
Here is my plan. I am aiming to write a new post at least weekly. It will be around the areas of spirituality, leadership, mental health, cross cultural thoughts or just something from my life.
My overall purpose is to provide wisdom and insight into the complexities of 21st century life. Please do provide me with feedback, I want to hear what you think!! If you disagree with me or want to provide an alternative perspective, go for it! The important thing is to tell me what’s on your mind.
However, there are two guiding principles:
The first is that in comments and discussions we treat one another with honour and respect. Every individual is uniquely valuable and has a right to express their opinion so long as they do it in a way that is considerate and respectful. I have worked with people with learning disabilities for many years and one thing this has shown me is the importance of showing respect to everyone regardless of their abilities, opinions or beliefs.
The second guiding principle may be more challenging. This is that opinions and ideas are not all worthy of the same respect. Some ideas (such as that human beings are intrinsically valuable) can be respected more than others (such as the earth is flat or one race, religious group or social class is somehow superior to another). The problem is it can be very hard to separate our opinions and ideas from our personal identity or even our very selves. It is so easy to feel that if my view or idea is challenged then my identity is being challenged. Or to put it bluntly, it is very easy, consciously or subconsciously, to jump from saying ‘because you think my view or opinion is stupid’, to then assume ‘you think I am intrinsically stupid’.
Psychologists talk about how our default way of thinking is to make decisions for emotional reasons and then try to justify them logically. Our natural reaction, rather than reflecting on the message we hear and its implications, is then to shoot the messenger. Instead of being a shooting match, I hope this blog can be a forum to gently challenge and provide a platform for mutual learning and growth in a way that is respectful of others.
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Question: So, what do you think? What particular issues would you like to explore? You can leave a comment below.