Thursday, March 31, 2005

Same Wellspring, Different (but parallel) Message

It looks like Jay and I were both reading Christopher Bailey today...but here is the quote that struck a chord with me:

... I encourage folks to live full lives that are not one-dimensional, but integrate work, personal time, community service, passionate hobbies, and anything else that adds to the complete experience that is life. This is the wellspring of creativity and spirit that drives our existence. To segment all of this ... is doing a disservice to the world and ourselves.

While I know that Bailey writes as a life coach and speaks to issues of humanism in the workplace, for me this particular post hits on a fundamental issue I come across day after day in my work with/for/about First Nations in Canada (and I would argue that this applies to indigenous peoples in general): the premise that all life is interconnected. All aspects of life "are the spokes to a larger wheel." To separate the parts from the whole is to nullify the whole.

And that is precisely what companies do when creating and perpetuating brands...that is precisely what the Canadian and British Columbian governments do when they continue to rely on inappropriate case law. The people for whom the system/brand was created in the first place are now secondary AT BEST. The bottom line is all we see...

But herein lies the rub: how do we live in the liminal space between problematic system and the revolutionary reform of that system? What do we do in the interim to provide for the needs of people that cannot wait for the ideal to become the real? How do we reallocate funds that are inextricably linked to the system?

Maybe the trick is that we think resources are in a stranglehold of established frameworks...

2 Comments:

Anonymous Christopher Bailey said...

Nigel, I think you hit on an interesting twist to my original thought. I'm not very familiar with the legal issues you mention facing First Nations in Canada, so I'll probably end up erring on the side of the ideal versus the real.

We're dealing with change here - short-term and long-term. Add a system that seems to be rigid and lethargic. Do you change the system from the outside or the inside? Any system is affected by environmental inputs. So what inputs can be constantly introduced to change the system? That'll take time. Short-term, it appears that folks need assistance now. I like how you challenge your own perception of the difficulty of accessing resources.

Where am I going with this? I have no idea. It's fun when ideas transform according to how their perceived and incorporated into different situations.

7:51 AM  
Blogger nigel said...

Christopher,
Thank you for your insightful comments on my post - originally inspired by your post. As I am new to this form of communication I am still amazed that dialogues can occur this way - as Hugh at gapingvoid.com says, "smarter conversations." In regards to your comment here: having worked outside of and now within this problematic system of Canada and this Province, I still have no answers but I hope through this weblog and reading other's (like yours) I will learn more about creative and postive solutions.

11:01 AM  

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