Dear learners and teachers, Both/and
'The Sun must have an eye in order to shine, a bird an ear in order to
- Authur Schopenhauer
On a hill in Italy sits a town, within the town there is a school, within
both town and school are children ~~~of variance that agree ~~~ and their
'number' is diminishing, pictured like an inverted triangle or iceberg. The
Mayor of said town most evenings runs from bar to bar telling the young men
to 'get married and make love to make babies' and so restore fundamental life
to the community, because if they do not in less than six years the school
will close, so the demographic trend ordains.
They do not.
They say first you must 'love' before you 'marry' and they choose to love
differingly and not marry.
People talk of watching the grass grow, and paint dry and Senge teaches us
the parable of the boiled frog and I just wonder, in my cage, if any one has
noticed this too?
Maturana says that through the many walking talking millennia as many as a
dozen 'species' of man may have ceased through a lack of fundamental love.
How fundamental and of what nature must our love become to not let that
school die, because if that school dies any school can die?
And it appears that many are in many advanced European countries.
Now I need/want to tell you of some-one who is trying to midwife a little LO
(school) in Africa.
This story is both true and brief. Briefer than I would like, so please
nurture it with care.
All seeming contentious words like the word -begging- are quotes. Informed by
my friend who 'knows' these things by 'being there' both 'among' and for
Three Begging Letters.
The first from the field is open and expansive, telling of successes and
failures, it is long. In essence the author is a missionary priest who
seeks funds from an organisation HQ that could support him. They actually
have pre-designed responses to these 'begging' letters to speed up
response time and business efficiency. They wrote back after a fashion,
telling that his work was good but,sorry no funds.
The second came from the field, a few months months later, it was thanking
them for so courteously and particularly considering his first request and
he told them of increasing difficulty owing to local politics and other
complex equations;-) and that he recognised the difficulty of aportioning
funds to his project (a school) BUT, he would still like something from
them, even if only half of the few thousand dollars he initially wanted.
This then 'activated' a second letter that was similarly pre-designed to
appease and fend off for good the begging letters author, whomsoever it
was, offering then more detailed information as to why the funds would not
be forthcoming. They felt this would suffice. It usually did the trick.
The third letter, over six months later was grace itself. It began
something like this, Thank you for your more than ample explanation of why
you cannot help, and I apologise to you for the time it has taken me to
respond to it, I have only just been released from prison where I was
tortured by the local police. I am back in the field now. By the way, do
you think then you could send me five hundred dollars so that...... ?
That letter is in the hands of the person I was with last night. I have
asked for a copy as testament.
She wants to do something about that, she feels helplessness in the face
of it. I said I will do something. Little but something. I have done
something that I could do in this case. His story is out and among you,
spread it like seedcorn. It is a way.
This place is a way, a broad way, a deep way, a common way, a lit way, and
we do not know how it is that branching streams flow in the darkness but
they do, they most assuredly do.
Martin Luther wrote that even if he knew the world was to end tomorrow it
would not stop him today from planting the apple tree in his garden.
Think upon his words if you wish, they contain much wisdom and they are
not difficult to swallow.
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