Entrenched thinking and relationships

31 Aug

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I decided to blog this thought train instead of writing a myriad tweets, if it feels relevant please share/comment, although it is response to @DedicatedPeeler and @moderndayman18

As I was driving I thought about how the best way to *challenge* entrenched thinking would look: the first thing that is needed in my view is a positive relationship with the person/s whose thinking you wish to challenge.  This is slightly easier on a one to one or small group level than in an organisation.   If challenged in a *wrong* way where defense mechanisms kick in, the entrenched thought gets buried deeper into the persons psyche and is harder to  root out.  They may outwardly follow the new way  but with the thinking unchanged the genetic code of the organisation stays the same and anything that challenges the way the code is connected gets attacked by the organisation’s white blood cells.
I think about organisations as bodies… positive change and entrenched thinking as viruses.  The quickest way to change an organisation is to affect it’s genetic code: so that thinking whether positive or negative is bonded to the cells and is there for generations.
If entrenched thinking is likened to cancer in this symbolic way it helps to understand how pervasive it can be and how harmful attempts to remove it can be (surgery or chemotherapy) although the result is a body without cancer it is not always as healthy as it could be…
IF, there are good relational bonds and the members of the organisation feel valued and not ostracised for their beliefs  they are more likely to be open to change.  This positivity infects the organisation as a whole and a new, stronger, healthier genetic code is embedded by the contact of one changed thinker positively engaging with another colleague and the results snowball.
The biggest danger that I can see is that negative changes, due to poor relational challenge are more virulent.

I hope this helps explain my thoughts 🙂
Namasté Jules

Workfare and Anti-Slavery Legislation

24 Aug

Beastrabban\'s Weblog

Left-wing bloggers against workfare, like Johnny Void, have repeatedly pointed out that workfare constitutes a form of slavery. Under the government’s welfare to work reforms, benefit claimants can be forced to work for companies for no pay, if they wish to receive their benefits. This applies even if the claimant has been sanctioned, so that they receive no benefit payments whatsoever, and are forced to use their savings or go to a food bank. Even if this does not constitute slavery, it certainly constitutes forced labour, which is almost the same and just as offensive under international law.

Yesterday I put the oath medieval slaves took in seventh century France, when poverty forced them to give up their freedom and become a lord’s slave. I pointed out how close this was to current workfare and in particular the use of workfare labour when the claimant has been sanctioned.

Sasson commented…

View original post 1,054 more words

Medieval Slave’s Oath: Now Applicable to Workfare

22 Aug

As ever Beastrabban gives an interesting perspective, here he looks at Medieaval Slave oaths comparing them to Workfare…

Beastrabban\'s Weblog

Looking through the books and materials I’ve got on slavery the other day, I found the oath slaves took when they formally renounced their freedom and became the property of a feudal lord in 7th century France.

‘Everyone knows that great poverty and very bad harvests oppress me, and I have nothing with which to feed or clothe myself. At my request you have given me some money and some clothes. As I cannot repay you, I cede to you my liberty: you may dispose of me as your other slaves.’

Well, it’s now fifteen centuries later, and we’re in the 21st century not the seventh. The attitude still seems to be the same at the DWP. It’s certainly the idea behind workfare, where in exchange for receiving the pittance to relieve hardship and allow the claimant something to eat, they are put on the work programme to labour for…

View original post 190 more words

Fighting Demons (guest blog)

14 Aug

Fighting Demons

What happens next
Is hard to say,
When you’re only living
For today –
The miles ahead seem
Dark and hard;
Each inch a victory
To gain a yard –
Grasping anything
Not yet lost,
Reclaiming life at any cost –
To confront your truth
And not recoil;
To fight your demon
On foreign soil –
Fighting demons may be
Hard to do,
But fighting demons
Can be good for you –
To redeem yourself
In your own eyes;
To cease believing
Your own lies –
To change your path
And make amends;
To learn to be your own best friend –
You scream;
“If this is life, then give me death!”
For madness rides
Despairing breath,
Yes – fighting demons
May be hard to do
So this is one truth
I’ll pass to you;
Faith in your steps
Will see you through –
Just remember –
Fighting demons can be good for you.

I just saw this posted by @duncanthementat it touched me so deeply I got permission to share it

The Right Honorable

12 Aug

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With all the political goings on, the actions of our gvt, the shenanigans of the Labour leadership quest and historical cases of varying kinds  I have been musing upon the title Right Honorable and what it signifies to a simple soul like myself.  I have discovered that I don’t think it can be a completely blameless person, as to be blameless one would have to be inert, of course pedants might be able to asign a blame of sorts to inaction (note to self: inaction may be one of the most perverse qualities I’d attribute to an MP).
I have discovered that it signifies to me a person who is able to accept when they are found to be or have committed an error, willing to accept responsibility for that error and then to try and address the issues caused by this error to the best of their ability whilst making sincere apologies. If it was not possible to address the issues, they would step down from their position as an act of contrition.  Historically this was a hallmark or accepted standard to aspire to for most folk whether from the gentle classes or of more lowly origins, it was generally called integrity, or good character.  Have we become so accepting of the spin and excuses of individuals that we no longer expect this standard to be enacted?   What does it say about the houses of parliament that this behaviour is almost extinct, it seems.  What does it say about us as a society when we accept the inaction of an individual without consequences that would be applied in other walks of life?

To my mind the passivity of the public in swallowing this has contributed slowly over the years into organisations and our own personal lives.  It feels as if it is far more common for a person to try and hide their errors, shift blame for them to someone else or even make excuses as to why this behaviour was deemed necessary.   I’m no angel by any means yet I would like to see more integrity around  especially in those who by definition of the title Right Honorable are the leaders whom we *trust* (cough cough, that was difficult to write!) to make decisions for our communities and our nation.  Change is needed on all levels, I’d better start with myself!

Namasté Jules

EU shortcomings?

28 Jul

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When I think about the EU, the first thing that comes to my mind is bullying.  It was set up to bring more equality to Europe but seems to have failed in that task.  There is no EU wide minimum wage, which in my mind would be an obvious starting point for equality, wouldn’t that lift many poor people out of poverty?
Over the last few months we have seen the richer more powerful countries bullying Greece to accept measures that on the surface will resolve a short term problem,  but in the long run will keep Greece in both an economic strait jacket and keep finances going to the richer elements whilst the ordinary people struggle to survive whilst paying back loans.  If a loan shark had made the equivalent terms to a group of individuals there would be an outcry for legal intervention I’m pretty sure!  But dress it up as official, and for the good of the EU, then it is perceived as acceptable by most.  Never mind the ledgers were fiddled with a willful blind eye overseeing them as the spiders spun their webs and waited for the inevitable failure that would bring their prey right to them.
As for farming,this week French farmers blockaded their borders to prevent cheaper produce being brought in from other EU countries.  I understand that farmers need to protect their livelihoods, and this is their idea of protectionism but is it in line with the ethos of the EU?  Historically farmers have been encouraged to produce food stuffs, even at a loss, due to the way EU subsidies are organised.  This does not always make sense, so markets are artificially inflated and deflated.  I remember the food mountains of rotting unwanted by the EU nations, food that was overproduced but unable to be shipped to other countries even though people were starving.  Something about the logistics of shipping it where it was needed trumped the costs of storing and then destroying it.  How naive I am to think the life has more value than profit.
The behaviour of the powerful states in the EU seems to be closer to bullying than support, it feels like warfare by finance to me.  The European Parliament seems to be run more for the gain of the myriad corporations who lobby there and the personal gain via expenses for MEPs than it does for the people of the member states, making a total mockery of the supposed democratic process it was set up to provide.  Tribalism appears to be more apparent than true politics, where are the strides towards unity and security for the ordinary people we were expecting?  Ah yes, sitting in the vaults of various banks whilst the players in the shadows wait to get even richer from the misfortunes of another member state.  Will it be Spain or Italy?  Is that OK as long as the UK survives?  Or will the people wake up and make changes that are fair for everyone?
Yes, I do want to get nearer to Utopia, yes it’s a dream I believe is worthwhile working towards.
Namasté

(My thanks to Max aka @maxjfreeman who asked for my opinion) 😉

Thoughts

14 Jul

sheep-wolf-shadow

Today my brother starts the first of 12 cycles of Folfox chemotherapy, we shared jovial texts this morning.  I can’t imagine how he is feeling or how he is going to feel in the weeks ahead.

I do know that without the NHS he wouldn’t be able to afford the treatment so I am extremely thankful that it still exists.

It’s weird, but I am feeling a curious mix of introspection and extrospection.  The minutiae of life seem as overwhelming as the largese of existence.  I’m musing on whether we are what we perceive ourselves to be, or whether we are what the sum of our actions have made us.  Is it neither or both?

Humanity is such a weird thing, we exist in our own thoughts and those who think about us, is this temporal?

I grieve for so many things that I feel are unjust in the world, they affect me and the way I behave.  Do I only *care* about injustice because of the sense of righteousness is gives me?  Would it be easier to be callously uncaring: robotic?  Possibly, but that would be denying part of what I feel makes me me.

Why am I feeling my brother’s chemo more from the perspective of its impact on me and my children than my brother?  Why does that change within any given moment?

Why do questions like that comfort me more than concrete answers?

Whatever is happening in your world today I hope you find peace,  today all I can manage is chaos

Namasté

Jules

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