Wednesday, 1 June 2011

a Moment for Wisdom…


I would like to believe when I die that
I have given myself away like a tree that sows seed every spring and never counts the loss, because it is not loss; it is adding to future life. It is the tree’s way of being. Strongly rooted perhaps, but spilling out its treasure on the wind.”

May Sarton

“… Disciplined love is what has given prophets, revolutionaries and saints the courage to die for the future they envisaged. They make their own bodies the seed of their highest hopes.”

Rubem Alves

Personal Wisdom:

How do you give yourself away? How do
you “add to future life”?

What does “disciplined love” mean to you?
Is this something that you attempt to practice?

What are you willing to die for?

Societal Wisdom:

What would your society look like if people practiced “disciplined love”?

a Moment with Sharif…


Here, in our Spring (at least in this hemisphere), I remind us of seeds… and death.

The Sarton quote has been very supportive and comforting for me, as I do this work of Praxis. When I started Praxis half a year ago, I had assumed that by now there would be over 1,000 people involved at various levels, and enough financial support for me to hire someone to handle the tech part of this. Not so… or, at least, not yet.

I have been advised by various people to “stop giving my work away”. Then I read Sarton. I realize that this is exactly what ALL of us must do… we must start “adding to future life”. Right now, our society is busy spending our children’s inheritance and mortgaging their future. In order to support our insupportable lifestyles, we are incurring debt the likes of which the world has never seen. The Titanic is going down, and we’re using our children and grandchildren as buoyancy cushions.

The Sarton quote is strongly coupled to the Alves quote. In our meaningful death, in our
disciplined love, we form a seed that is planted firmly in the future. It is this vision, propelled by love, which CREATES the future in which we live. Without a vision shaped by love, we don’t have a future – we have… THIS.

Children learn by seeing and imitating adults (their parents, their older siblings, their
community). When we see the courage of others, we are energized and will act accordingly.

People like Gandhi and King propelled us to act in the 20th Century and molded the world we live in today.  Who’s pushing now?  And, are we paying them any attention?

What happens if we don’t see the “prophets, revolutionaries and saints”? What if everyone we see around us is acting out of fear instead of courage, acting out of the past instead
of the future? What if we’re paying attention to “happy-face” mainstream news anchors (or their sour-faced counterparts on the Left or Right of mainstream).

There ARE societies that practice “disciplined love”. There are societies where the members practice giving themselves away, people who live their lives as though their children’s futures were important. They are the KEEPERS. Their values are our hope for the future.




All photos by Sharif Abdullah, unless otherwise noted.


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One Response to Wednesday, 1 June 2011

  1. simone says:

    thank you, for being a keeper of this vision and these values we are endeavoring to embody and enact.

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