Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Kerala - man walking

As news of huge and impending cuts comes in... comments from valued friends, chime with mine, summed up as, “whathe****? is going on?” I am holding on to the strength of the idea that we create our futures, first inside our heads and then in slow steps and pushes and pulls, with those we meet… today and tomorrow and the next day.  I’m strongly of the view, that in times of cut funding,“sans BSF, sans IYS, sans everything..” we are thrown, inevitably, back towards a shrunken survival mode and leaders must offer hope to those around, by building personal capacity and social capital in our interdependence. This is more about making meanings in the relationships and purpose, rather than the infrastructure.


Now, there is a triple danger in what I do next! It might be seen as a counsel for political acceptance, plus a challenge to financial smugness, plus some evangelical pomposity and so, lead to outright rejection. But, look, in detail, at the picture below… What thoughts does it raise in you? I took it in Kerala two years – we watched him march purposefully, in oppressive heat, a sure pace and even speed, over the horizon. Survival, determination and purpose personified. And look at the care and detail in his kit - his footwear. Its still fires me up! We have been here before....we know what to do... it's head down, ever onwards, the hard yards and then upwards, eyes always open for supportive fellow travellers... Looking for a Tower ahead perhaps - too see further - ivory, or folly?









2 comments:

  1. The Kerala image seems to signify an individual's determination and abiltiy to survive. He is marching with some purpose to get out of the oppressive heat, perhaps with little hope of help from the leaders of his country. He knows that is survival depends on his own capacity not on any 'social capital' provided by his government. Any 'meaning in relationships' and shared purpose are with those who are close to him and in whom he can trust. The future he can create for himself is restricted by circumstance. That circumstance is helped or hindered by the infrastucture that his government can provide for him. They in turn are helped/hindered by their own circumstance, determined by internal and external forces (perhaps greed or self prservation being major components).
    In this time of cutbacks and austerity, we must be sure that the Big Society is not just a big sham. Removing interfering government might sound a good idea, but if it means off-loading problems onto 'the people' without providing the infrastucture and support then it is merely 'a good idea' that has no real meaning nor purpose except to make do until the heat is off and the storm has passed. it might work. or it might just be storing up trouble for the future.
    If our leaders are to offer hope, it must be have within it trust, goodwill and a shared direction marked out by the acknowledgement of our interdependence and all that that means.

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  2. Well put - thanks - I agree - good to hear from you. Not much more to say

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