Tag Archives: experience

The Next 10 Years

EI 1006

Another year. This year’s resolutions looked pretty much the same as last year and the year before that so I’ve resolved to stop making New Year’s resolutions. Nonetheless the year-end (or beginning) is a time that calls for taking stock and reflecting on the past and the future. This year the big questions for me have to do with the next 10 years.

I have laughed a lot about how easily I can fall into making just about anything significant. I even made

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Wisdom 101: A matter of time

By Jim Selman | Bio

The older I am, the more I reflect on the aphorisms all around us and wonder why it is so difficult to accept and live with this obvious wisdom. Robert Fulghum memorialized many of them in his bestseller All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten. All of these little ‘nuggets’ of wisdom we’ve accumulated over the years are generally, well, wise. It is befuddling why so few people take them to heart.

Why do so many spend a lifetime learning these kinds of lessons the hard way? Actually, why is it that any of us continue to act badly, do things we know won’t work, or become engaged in behaviors that, in any of a hundred different ways, are harmful to ourselves and others?

Theologians, psychologists, teachers, philosophers and parents have been occupied by these questions for a very long time. The larger underlying questions at the heart of this inquiry are:

  • “Who am I?”
  •  “Do I really have a choice about what I do?”
  • “Is it really possible to learn from our experience?”

If by ‘experience’

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Harold’s Story – Part 3

By Stuart J. Whitley | Bio

I read somewhere that good decision-making—indeed, good relations—depends upon a virtuous cycle of respect, trust and candour (which takes some time to establish, but which can easily be interrupted). Attitude, after all, is everything. Perhaps that last statement needs a bit of refinement: the ethical attitude is everything. By that I mean the determination of the answer to the age-old question: who is right? Was Harold right to express his annoyance

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Following Your Bliss & U-Turns

The following segment from Tom Freston’s 2007 commencement speech to the graduates at Emerson College contains four pieces of wisdom about ‘being in action’ that are timeless. This man built MTV and Viacom’s cable empire, was fired by chairman Sumner Redstone, accepted a $60 million severage package and is now helping Oprah build her new TV network while you travels to Afghanistan, Burma, Rwanda and beyond and works with Bono to reduce global poverty and AIDS. 


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I don’t know if you saw Hillary Clinton’s concession speech, but it was extraordinary. While the skeptics might say she was stumping for the vice presidency or simply doing the expected, the fact is that she is a pro and spoke with dignity and, in my judgment, was sincere and even more magnanimous that the occasion required. She recounted the Democratic values and the distinction between liberal and conservative politics today. More than I recall at any time during her campaign, she spoke

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Listening & Learning

Life happens while we are having conversations with ourselves and other people.

Not learning from others may have a lot to do with not truly ‘listening’ to what others say. Listening is the context that makes life intelligible, allows anything to have meaning, and forms the basis for all communication (both written and spoken). It is a whole lot more than just ‘hearing’ the words that are spoken. I’m always listening, always bringing a prior interpretation or understanding of my world

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Good Days, Bad Days

I caught a Larry King interview the other night in which he
was speaking with a bunch of positive-thinking gurus about their
beliefs and theories. One of the questions he asked was, “Do you have
any bad days”? Most of them said they don’t have bad days, and a couple
said that they still have ‘bumps’ in the road but recover quickly. I
got to thinking about my own life and concluded that I too can claim
that I don’t have bad days, although some are more challenging than


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Time and Temporality

Lately I have been thinking about the future and the distinction between time and temporality. Our relationship to time can vary depending upon our culture and the era in which we are living. If I imagine living 300 or 400 years ago in what was primarily an agricultural ‘reality’, time was cyclical—we measured it in terms of seasons and lived in the certainty that life didn’t change much from one generation to the next. I can contrast that to today when time is viewed more like a highway

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I Can’t Wait Until I’m Old Enough to…

By Don Arnoudse

daughter, Sara, is about to turn 21. Her impending birthday has
triggered my own memories of that familiar refrain of youth…”I can’t
wait until I’m old enough to….go to school, to learn to drive, to vote,
to get a credit card, to stay out past midnight, to travel on my own,
to get my first apartment, to get my first real job, to go to night
clubs and bars, and so on and so on.”

It got me to wondering.
What are the advantages of age now that I’m staring 60

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Riverboats and Bone Yards III

By Stu Whitley

This is third in a five-part series.

It is inevitable that the pressures of the past that are felt by the present have to be contained in some sort of manageable context. Life must be worth living.

Gazing upward to the crumbling decks of
those forlorn leviathans from my canoe on the Yukon River, I wondered
about the men who worked those paddlewheel steamers. Back-breaking work
it must have been to feed those enormous furnaces. Even the ship’s
wheel needed to be six feet across to achieve the mechanical advantage
necessary to turn the fat twin rudders under the paddlewheel. It must
have required Herculean

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