Communities of Practice LO27132

From: Barry Mallis (
Date: 08/19/01

Replying to LO27116 --

Dear Andrew,

When I think of the European countryside 800 years ago, I see first
romanesque, then gothic churches and cathedrals. One particular romanesque
church--is it Vezelay? Um, no.--has a tympanum which in its Garden of
Earthly Delights fashion becomes a mad play in at least three acts. This
was a pilgrimage church in the southern French hills. Many peasants could
not read, but their eyes told them all.

I imagine how we rank-and-file must have lived back then, beneath the
burden of three essentials: my next meal; safety from flora, fauna and
Mother Nature's other manifestations; and fear of hell as transmogrified
in the imagination by those who claimed to be religious guides. Life was
simple to see, easy to unravel into three fibres each of which could be
used to hang on to life with, or hang oneself.

And these churches were often built, as we can see, on higher ground in
order to stimulate, when viewed from the distant fields and huts, at least
the tithe of thought, the pound of fear.

So if I fail to answer my brother's jesting question, "What's the city,"
surely I'll trip on the same question about towns, about God, about

As a mime instructor of mine, Jacques Lecoq, told me years ago, you can't
get better until you get worse, until you fall on your face and make

Best when done in jest. Saves lives.

Warmest regards,


Barry Mallis
The Organizational Trainer
Keene, NH USA

> From:
> The way we build cities here in the UK is to build a Cathedral. Oxford is
> a city because it has Christ Church (College) Cathedral. Cambridge is a
> town because it does not have a Cathedral.


Barry Mallis <>

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