A Personal Reflection
Presence (Human Purpose and the Field of the Future) as presented by these great thinkers of our time, Peter Senge, C. Otto Scharmer, Joseph Jawaorski, And Betty Sue Flowers is a product of profound conversations that lasted a year and a half; it explores new dimensions to understanding our world, improved ways of approaching the challenges therein and more importantly sensing the realities before they emerge.
It teaches the principles that have long been the pursuit of great minds and the guiding light for many generations of successful personalities who have made tremendous input to our world. I found the book an interesting adventure into mysticism and a dutiful exploration of nature such that in-depth outlook on life can sharpen perspective and ultimately produce better decisions with solid foundations. These authors draw from the enormous experiences of over 150 persons and theirs to set a paradigm shift that is useful to manage the emerging future.
This is the way I understand it: our world is ravaged by enormous speed and time is not a friend of any man. This speed transcends every work of life: music, arts, science business, and government and human interactions. It is seen in the nature and strength of the media and the internet; pellucid in the power of information and communication technology. It then appears every thing and every one is in a hurry. We are in haste to meet up with the demands of personal goals, the challenges of relationships with others and with the inventions of man.
In these scenarios, events usually overtake us: when such are favorable, we are happy. On the other hand, if situations do not, we are reactive. As stated, we are stuck in ‘seeing and acting’ following a vicious cycle that leads to nowhere; this is because we have been hypnotized within a framework that states: ‘seeing is believing’ and then ‘believing propels action’. There is understanding of the ‘whole’. Many a time, we have no idea of the big picture, and so we remain dissatisfied with our level of achievements in life.
There is little or no direction because we are caught in a cycle where our vision is limited because of surrounding speed and noise that our senses can hardly cope with. In short, there is a need for a paradigm shift where we look inwards to understand the whole, discover the realities of the future and then take proactive measures to promote good and curtail evil. I personally believe that the best decisions are reached in calmness: this is crux of the idea in the book but with more profound modifications.
I have learnt from the Presence that there is need for individual synchronicity: this implies achieving a befitting merger of individual skills, potentials and personality not from what people say but from an introspective understanding. It is the idea of transformational change that starts from looking inwards for necessarily for solutions to existing problems but using inner senses to detect these problems or realities and deal with them before they emerge.
I think this is not unconnected to understanding that man is a spiritual being and with compartments called the soul and body. With a vivid understanding of oneself in this light, it is easier to engage others with little or no frictions. The question then arises: “What would it take to shift the whole? ” it starts with sensing: quieting the mind, taking a distance from the problem and seeing from a deeper and fresh schema. It continues with presencing; that is to pre-sense an emerging future.
Then, “When we suspend and redirect attention, perception starts to arise from within the living process of the whole”. With sensing we redirect attention to a fresh perspective. As soon as this is done, fresh ideas emerge from within. This process is then concluded with realizing based on the theory of deep collective learning which ‘”starts with learning to see, moves on to opening a new awareness of what is emerging and our part in it, and finally leads to action that spontaneously serves and is supported by a larger whole. Having studied business management in college and now a graduate business program, this principle has particularly been useful as it presents “a more integrative science, spirituality, and practice of leadership. ” When I achieve understanding myself from what I can see and sense inside, I am not in identity conflict with others when we interact in a group. There is also power to detect new opportunities in the organization because of the fresh prospective from an inward search.
I understand then that in the midst of the hustle and bustle of everyday life, a purposeful pause at regular intervals to review existing conditions and see emerging realities would be very useful; it would not only keep me away from the stress of not understanding the whole, but it would definitely keep me above many waters! In the book, you learn the capacity to “presence”—to pre-sense, to become present to an emerging future that is our highest purpose and potential.
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