The sun has broken through the clouds, shattering brilliant diamonds as the rays glance off the snow and light up the dim world.  Snow has come to the mountain in a significant manner for the second time in a week. The farm is tucked in snug by the heavy blanket, and there is a clay braising dish of meat n potatoes n carrots n onions in the wood cookstove.  

       Winter is the traditional time for the farmer to rest and recharge, read and learn of philosophy and practice.  It is the time for prepping and planning for the season to come, and for winding up the record keeping for the previous season.  This winter has been action packed, and the recent snow days have provided much-needed opportunity for resting, reading and thinking.  

     Thinking and reflection offer the chance for evolution of life philosophy and way of being.  I have dedicated time to honing my personal values to a sharp clarity of Community and Contribution.  Doing the work to draw my values down to two from a much larger list is much like forging a knife from a bar of metal.  Spending the time fashioning articulation of self into a keen definition creates reflexivity in real time.

      This reflexivity can hold any choice or potential action up against the reflection of core values as an anchor point that allows for creation of a more objective understanding of self.  Self understanding has an inherent subjectivity but triangulation between multiple points of checkin and a given course of action will help to deepen understanding of the path to live those core values.  At the same time, that deepening understanding will offer a more effective way to choose the path forward.

       The essence lies in the link between thought and feeling, an informed perspective that operates in flow state and chooses the best possible courses of action based on the broadest benefits deliverable.  It is the philosophy and practice of a lifetime.

      One of the crucial lessons is self-forgiveness and the understanding that there will be mistakes and that there is much to learn.  Permission to accept these lessons creates space for new learning and effort.

       There is a fine line between over-analyzing and not doing due diligence.  Between agonizing and trivializing. That line is the avenue that anyone involved in public policy work should strive to achieve.  It can be exhausting or exhilarating, and sometimes both. Government is an interrelated system of parts and decisions in one area have ramifications in others, creating a mutual dialectic of change.  Assessing the potentialities of a given policy decision requires a broad understanding of interactional relationships and the mechanics of government.

       This blending is a direct combination of two strains of sociological thought.  Structural-Functionalism focuses on the mechanics of systems, while Social-Interactionism is concerned more with the relationships that humans form through interaction.  Politics is the blending of these two schools of thought, policy on the one hand and relationships on the other. The direction of government is a function of the combination of policy and relationships.  

      The more that we understand both the arena of civics and that of psychology, the more effective we humans can be at cooperating to craft governing systems that are just.  The art of political discourse depends on a foundation of interaction, which is governed and defined by the rules that humans create. Government is both an imagined creation and a monolithic structure.  Sociology says that “things that are thought to be real are real in their consequences”. What we believe, will have real effects and consequences, and the more informed we can be in our beliefs, the more effective we can be in creating human society.  We are all co-creators of the world in which we live, and we each have a unique opportunity to use life-force to shine a light as we work to illuminate the Great Human Project.

     The direction of the universe is a trend towards elegant, self-organizing complexity.  In the human sphere, there is an awakening movement towards a more equitable future that honors the world as a whole with all that is contained therein.  There are tribulations along the way, but we share an ability to find the path forward.

HappyDay Newsletter, Feb 10th, 2019