We have entered a watershed moment not only here in America, but also globally. It’s a moment that could help us wake up to a deeper level of collective awareness and renewal—or a moment when we could spiral down into chaos, violence, and fascism-like conditions. Whether it’s one or the other depends on our capacity to become aware of our collective blind spot.
What We Are Called to Do Now
(Snip)As we begin responding to the disruption of this week, we have an opportunity to organize in new ways that go beyond the usual responses to disruption:
Figure 2: Four types of response to disruptive change
What is called for today is a massive response that reaches into the upper right quadrant (figure 2): focusing on evolving and transforming the collective. What’s missing most is an enabling infrastructure that supports initiatives to move into the top right quadrant of co-creating change.
The good news is, that the future is already here – many initiatives already exist in which cross-sector groups work from seeing the whole (eco-system awareness) rather than from a silo-view (ego-system awareness).
Summing up, the blind spot at issue here concerns the dominant paradigms of thought that have legitimized the economic, political, and spiritual divides which—in conjunction with the mindless use of social media and technology—gave rise to the Trump movement and presidency. To overcome or bridge these divides calls for nothing less than regenerating the foundations of our civilization by updating the key operating codes on which our societies operate:
To advance such an agenda of profound societal renewal will require
· New collaborative platforms, online-to-offline, that allow pioneering change makers from across sectors to directly engage with each other
· A constitution for the global digital space that makes the Facebooks and Googles accountable to citizens, communities and civil rights worldwide.
· Massive free capacity building mechanisms that build the deeper innovation capacities at scale (curiosity, compassion, courage)
· And new concepts like basic income grants for all that would replace our current system of organized irresponsibility through an ecology of entrepreneurship that is driven by passion and purpose rather than profit – in other words, enabling people to activate their greatest gifts, and pursue the work they are truly passionate about.
MITx u.lab is a small prototype and platform that we started last year with the intention to help change makers who want to move their work into the fourth quadrant. What started as a MOOC is now a platform for 75,000 change makers from 180 countries that collaborate across 600 hubs. In 2017 we intend to move this platform to its next stage of catalyzing change at the scale of the whole system.
It’s one of several initiatives that helps us remember what matters most: that as warriors of the third category, we need to fully engage the present moment whilst keeping our eye on the future that is seeking to emerge. Our old civilizational forms are much more fragile than anyone might have thought. But our capacity to regenerate them from the deepest source of our humanity is also more present and available than ever—now.
Our U.Lab session on Monday November 14th
When the session begins we’ll decide if it will be a whole group session, like last week’s social presencing theatre, or if we’ll spend most of our time in our small groups. If it’s small groups then we need to decide if it will be another “Magic Six” case clinic (in which case I would be the case giver). I’m happy to do that, but have already had the experience last year so if people want to do something more general and responsive to Otto’s post instead that is okay with me too.
Whichever we do it is relevant for me to share some preparatory notes
As case giver, my personal aspirations and leadership challenge would have to do with an organisation called FASST (Freedom, Accountability and Structure for Systemic Transformation) and other individuals and groups interested in collaboration.
When Bernie was case giver, he described his collaboration prototype called OneSPRINT, which he is developing with others, including Sebastian. Since then, Berine and I (and Sebastian during his trip to UK) have had several meetings together, exploring collaboration between OneSRPINT and FASST – see Nov 4th update on FASST and SHIFT. I have also introduced Bernie and Sebastian to a couple of my friends, with a view to increasing collaboration opportunities.
I have been wondering how we best bring our growing collaboration protopying to the attention of others in U.Lab – The Magic Six, Kings Cross study circle, and the whole U.Lab community.
I also bring connections with other collaborations and groups I’m involved with including the First Thursday Group, Dadamac Foundation, the Teal for Startups group, Escape School, GlobalNet21, and the Before I Die Network. In addition I’m working on the first draft of a chapter that I’m contributing to a futurist book to be published in March 2017. In my chapter I look just ten years ahead. The scenario is one of exponential technological development, with related power struggles between existing power structures and emerging ones. An emerging power force (to enable people and planet to thrive) is a group called “Exponentially Human” a global collaborative which is combining use of the rapidly developing technology with enhanced skills in collaborating. Exponentially Human includes many cultural perspectives in its approach to addressing complex global problems, and it has a wide collection of strategies and procedures for exploring them within the group. The imagined future culture of the Exponentially Human group is partly influenced and inspired by what I am experiencing through U.Lab. I’m currently picking as many brains as I can on future hopes and visions, to widen my ideas of how this might play out In ten years time.
If I am case giver then issues emerging from the above are what I would be hoping to gain more insight on during the case clinic, i.e. how I best support the visibility and development of the emerging collaboration of collaborations, so that we best respond to Otto’s call for · New collaborative platforms, online-to-offline, that allow pioneering change makers from across sectors to directly engage with each other and · Massive free capacity building mechanisms that build the deeper innovation capacities at scale (curiosity, compassion, courage)
If we do something with a different structure to case clinics then the information above is what will be informing my personal contribution to our explorations.