I bring you a box of jewels, and also a box of tools.
Together, they are good for making a life of beauty.
The jewels are ideas, poems, metaphors, thoughts, possibilities.
The tools are ways to encounter those ideas, skills of embodiment, processes and techniques that you can use to make meaning and art out of the jewels.
My tool chest includes:
- Science and mathematics (logic, rigour, the ability to make models and test them). Physics, subatomic, quantum, nuclear, cosmological, Newtonian
- Philosophy, particularly of the post-structuralist variety. Think, "How are your roles acting upon you to draw you to decisions you wouldn't choose of your own volition?" Marx, multiple feminisms, structural analysis, the endlessly deferred signifier, the map vs the territory
- Education, comma, adult. Maslow, Bloom, disciplinary structures. Purposeful seeking of skills. Communities of practice. Zones of proximal development. Threshold concepts.
- Practical skills. Household management. Cooking. Meal planning. Stretching a dollar. Gardening. Raising good people.
- Embodiment practices. Yoga. Core strength. Ecstatic dance. Body as metaphor. Incorporated (literally) knowledge.
- Meditation. Willingness to sit with the inner voices. Bija (single pointed). Vipsassana, open sky, Big Mind. Breath. Posture. Guided visualizations.
- Permaculture and systems design. Prolonged observation of what is. Interventions designed to create loops and self-sustaining systems. Capturing and storing energy.
- Communication. How do we speak? What does it mean? How do we speak in ways that honour the person we are speaking to, and ourselves as well? How do we co-
- Art... appreciation, making, love of, human requirement for...
We are obligate meaning makers. We attribute cause, meaning purpose, structure to everything we encounter. My goal is to bring the most appropriate tool to the current problem, whatever it is.
Which brings me to:
The Jewel Chest
Oh, my loves... I have accumulated so much over the years. So many ideas, so many pieces of art, so many possibilities. I once described my super power as being... well... imagine you were building a model out of Lego, and you could describe a hole in your model, but you didn't know if it could ever be completed. Somewhere in the box behind me, I have a piece that you need. I don't know what it is, but I'm pretty sure I've got something that will work.