The name of this blog, Rainbow Juice, is intentional.
The rainbow signifies unity from diversity. It is holistic. The arch suggests the idea of looking at the over-arching concepts: the big picture. To create a rainbow requires air, fire (the sun) and water (raindrops) and us to see it from the earth.
Juice suggests an extract; hence rainbow juice is extracting the elements from the rainbow, translating them and making them accessible to us. Juice also refreshes us and here it symbolises our nutritional quest for understanding, compassion and enlightenment.

Tuesday 22 May 2012

Sometimes I just sits

A Zen master was teaching an eager student from the West.  They were sitting quietly meditating for what seemed like hours to the student.  Eventually, the disciple began to get agitated.  He stopped meditating, poked his master and said “where I come from there is a saying that goes ‘Don’t just sit there, do something’”.  The master smiled and replied “where I come from we too have a saying, it goes like this – ‘don’t just do something, sit there’”.

We could all do with a little just sitting there.  Indeed as community development workers we sometimes need to do just that.

A community is a system complete with resources, inflows, outflows, reinforcing and balancing feedback loops.  Before we intervene in a community system we may just want to sit and observe.  Rushing in with a desire to improve, fix or develop means that we are very likely to miss the relationships and wisdom that already exists in the community.

How many communities (especially the so-called disadvantaged, marginalised or dispossessed communities) have had aid or community workers come into them with grandiose ideas of creating industries or jobs, upskilling the youth or building fancy facilities?  Meantime, local produce is being harvested, bought and sold, young people are taking care of elders and small groups are meeting in different community spaces.

Learning to just sit, observe and ask questions may be a better use of a community development worker’s time than attempting to show immediate, measurable results.

1 comment:

  1. I think this post says it all really...sometimes the best ideas come from introspection.


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