Work as conversation

To my good friends–

This morning a glimpse that my work is a conversation. It is intercourse between my client and I and other parties involved. It is my living and working in flow and Csikszentmihalyi’s Flow is in fact conversation. It is entering into a place between, a broad river less than a narrow ridge, yet the persons are brought in and brought forth, and it is a grace. It is love at work, dynamics, relationship, meeting, being met, being consumed, sacrifice, dying and being brought forth–and in all this I am describing conversation. So I can be in conversation without words, or even when I am malleating words. It is not just the intention with which I approach the work, but entering in, being vulnerable, being met by the other. This is like Buber’s teacher, intending both sides, entering into each side, engaging both sides.

Do we allow ourselves to be engaged? It is a mutual thing to be sure, for both have to break through the shell of fear surrounding our vulnerability to being met. If they do manage this, or are cracked open from outside and something of them leaks out into the space in between, then conversation is possible, and this is a grace. Yet it still has to happen, this meeting, and that too is a grace. We can open the space for it, prepare the opening, invite the guests–and no one shows up. We need to remember that we can meet in chemistry that is dissonant–explodes, as well as that which is consonant–flows together or foams and spills over. Either one is a grace, and in each we are forced to grow, to take in nutrients, to give up some of our very identity in order that we might become new. We may welcome the new or be drowned by it, and still it is a grace. All about are beings seeking conversation, this too is a grace. If we seek, we can invite. If conversation is necessary, then we can invite, encourage, announce, open, welcome, seek, and then wait for the grace.

The next question might just be How: How do we move from standing in each other’s orbit to engagement? How do we reach out? Let me count the ways…? Likely the ways are endless. How do we meet you? True: endless. What is important is the reaching forth of the hand.

:- Doug.

Published in: Conversations | on September 21st, 2005 | No Comments »

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