Sunday, May 3, 2015

don't ask the boss

A lot of years ago, as a shiny-new newspaper reporter shot through with idealisms, it took a while for me to learn that if -- to use politics as an example -- you wanted to know the straight goods about the governor's new initiative, you never asked the governor. And bit by bit, that understanding seeped over into any other field of interest -- academia, religion, business, etc.: The vision might be laudable or glisten with hope, but the envisioner was no longer of much use when it came to a wider understanding of his/her vision.

Once they have gained some traction, visions have consequences and those consequences deserve investigation not so much among the visionaries but among those who have attached their wagons to the vision itself. Don't ask the boss.

To my mind, this is an exercise that has relevance not just when assessing social activities -- the stuff on the 'outside' -- but also deserves to be exercised within. Sure, anyone can believe in god or money or whatever. Anything can have that shiny, come-hither capacity. Peace and relief and meaning and a hundred other benefits can beckon.

So much for the visionary. So much for the governor.

But as a kindness, I think investigating the ways in which the bright vision is executed is important ... and probably much more important than the vision itself.

Wallowing in brightness can starve a (wo)man to death.

1 comment:

  1. I can envision a perfect world, but it requires no imaginings to understand the impossibility of it. And in the face of this misfortune, any comfort that can be offered is an obligation.

    One must fight the good fight with no expectation of winning. And so i'm left with an expectation of failure. I'm willing to be wrong, and quite experienced with that. But my practice is plagued by unfortunate expectations.