I woke up this morning aware that, for me to continue this discussion of envisioning a mature society, there are a number of digressions that I need to introduce. I want my writing to emphasize useful process, rather than utopian ideas. So —
- the Force Field of Change,
- the factors that determine change,
- the differences between difficulties and problems. and
- the differences between solvable and resolvable difficulties.
I need to explore these so as to have clarity of language — clarity of language is so important to me. If I am to make my musings meaningful, I need to write about them in a way that communicates what I want to say.
One of the difficulties of life is that it is a miracle that human beings are able to communicate at all — there are so many nuances to be overcome. A couple of statements emphasize this for me:
“I believe you understand what you think I said but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I said,”
and (this time with emphasis)
“I believe you understand what you think I said but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I said.”
Onwards and upwards — the Force Field of Change.
Force Fields are way to indicate that factors that come into a problem, in this case: change. (I’ve described them in a different context in an earlier post.) Effective change requires:
- honesty as to where I am in the present (best with a sensory-grounded description of what is actually occurring,
- a detailed vision of what I want in the future (essentially the scenery on the road),
- a description of the forces that are assisting me in moving forward (the motivating factors), and
- a description of the forces that are stopping my progress (the deterrent forces).
Together, all of this determines where I am in the present, balanced within the various forces. But I am not in the future. If I am to get to the future, I need to augment the motivating forces, the driving forces, and diminish the deterrent forces, the restraining forces. From my perspective as therapist, I suggest that diminishing the deterrent forces is more powerful than augment the motivators. But it is more painful to do so, and therefore people often focus on the augmentors.
Applied to the issues of seeking a mature culture, global warming is only one of the restraining forces. For the most part, climate change is a technological issue, but the underlying forces driving it are emotional. In my PhD, I identified these forces as the acedia of our culture; the force field thus became:
- diminishing the many ways in which we traumatize ourselves, and
- increasing the factors that move us to maturity: wisdom, discipline, hope, and playfulness.
Appropriately modifying all of these forces must become intentional parts of daily living in a maturing society.
Tomorrow: the factors that determine change.