Kornfield advocates "one practice and teacher among all of the possibilities...[I]nwardly it means having the determination to stick with that practice through whatever difficulties and doubts arise until you have come to true clarity and understanding" - a simplicity of perception that brings alive spiritual practice, peace, and truth in daily life.
The late, great W. Edwards Deming was passionate about improvement, and I've concluded that he has been my one "path" amongst all the quality movements. As I wrote my careful synthesis and adaptation of Deming's message, I realized that it has indeed been a "path" to both professional success and personal peace. I feel I've created an integrated package that will result in practitioners and organizations with "heart" - and goes far beyond a statistical toolkit.
How do you begin? Let's take some famous wisdom you will recognize from Chapter 64 of Tao te Ching
in the brilliant translation The Tao of Power
by R.L Wing:
What at rest is easy to hold;
What is not yet begun is easy to plan.
What is thin is easy to melt;
What is minute is easy to disperse.
Deal with things before they emerge;
Put them in order before there is disorder.
A tree of many arm spans is produced from a tiny sprout.
A tower of nine stories is raised from a pile of earth.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a footstep.
Those who act on things, spoil them;
Those who seize things, lose them.
Thus [those who truly imbibe Tao] do nothing;
Hence they spoil nothing.
They seize nothing;
Hence they lose nothing.
People often spoil their work at the point of its completion.
With care at the end as well as the beginning,
No work will be spoiled.
Thus [those who truly imbibe Tao] desire to be desireless
And do not treasure goods that are hard to get.
They learn without learning,
By returning to the place where the Collective Mind passes,
In this way they assist All things naturally
Without venturing to act.Wing's commentary:
Guide and control events by developing an instinct about where and when events originate. One can then act when situations are at their smallest, simplest, most unentrenched, and least reactive state - and at the same time positioning oneself to guide the situation through to completion. The instinct that signals the origin of events can be cultivated in individuals who are not blinded by excessive desires or crippled by dogmatic thinking. Individuals who are free of such limitations can use their intuitive powers to guide the world around them and work around rigid structures already in place.
Take that "first step" as I described last newsletter
and take heed of this wisdom from 70 year-old Benedictine nun and author Sister Joan Chittister:
"If you define serenity as blind acceptance of a bad situation, then I'm not serene. But if you define serenity as being willing to surrender to present circumstances while keeping a vision of a better future in mind, then I am that. I know things move slowly...if nobody points out that the emperor has no clothes...
..."Serenity is being aware of both what is and what can be, and having the patience to get from the former to the latter. The opposite of serenity is when you destroy what is, in pursuit of what ought to be. And those who take that route destroy themselves as well as the society around them."
If any of you would like the challenge of quietly bringing your organization to the next level towards a transformed culture, please contact me about the possibility of CO-facilitating a similar seminar
as a possible retreat for your staff or -- do you dare? -- your executive management (by solving a major problem, of course!) to create their
"will" and "belief."
Until next time...