in bowling alone, Robert Putnam is/was looking engagement/participation. so many people voice concern of generational dis-engagement.
p. 451 – political knowledge and interest in public affairs are critical preconditions for more active forms of involvement. if you don’t know the rules of the game and the players and don’t care about the outcome, your’e unlikely to try playing yourself.
on the other hand, we are much better educated than our grandparents, and since civics knowledge is boosted by formal education, it is surprising that civics knowledge has not improved accordingly. the average college graduate today knows little more about public affairs than did the average high school graduate in the 1940s.
perhaps the issue is more about **listening 24/7.
what if youth are sitting on, or could be co-creating, an idea(s) that would completely change how we spend our days, how we view money, how we view earning a living. in the now.. rather than following rules of a game that very few really want to play. if they ever did. more about making up the rules as you go along. emerging the game together. life in perpetual beta.
the last couple hundred years, we have been teaching/drilling the importance of keeping our nose down to the grind, of sticking to things, finishing things, without questioning anything. as a society, we get an A+ for that.
but perhaps in the process, we are missing each other. perhaps we are missing what matters. many youth see beyond the grind.. they see what we’re doing as blah blah, as not mattering. and their souls are crying out for more..
so while we are pushing stuff on them, it’s not laziness that we see/assume. most are even respectfully playing along with the perpetuating game, .. palms up… persevering.. in survival mode as we continue to drown them in buzz-word covered non-essentials. their belief, that perhaps someday they can start to live.
if we could only trust/connect/listen 24/7. now.
life is happening.
and too often we are not being careful.
and we are missing it.
**on listening – not missing it…
check out an amazing example if you haven’t already taken it in 100 times.
some of the rest of the story, is that Ben wasn’t forcing anything. he wasn’t putting on a show. in fact, the reason he and Adelaide were singing was because he knew her. he knew her fear of fireworks.
they knew each other. they had obviously sung this song together before, but they hadn’t harmonized. and they did it like it was second nature. like their nature was each other.
so very striking was how every time Adelaide stopped Ben, he didn’t laugh, or question, or grow weary, or miss a beat/opportunity to get back to the song. they were dancing the song. and he was listening to her fear/heart.
Ben never said, after we finish, or wait a minute, or let’s start over. each time Adelaide starting talking or gave him the cue, he stopped. everything. he took her in. he took in her current perspective. even when she asked (for the first time ever) to harmonize, he just danced along with the moment, with her whimsy.
imagine if we were able to be like Adelaide, and command a shhh. as a clue to people, to lean in, wake up, and listen. to share our fears/hopes/dreams.. so that communication/connection/knowing/love improves. to eradicate people bound by pluralistic ignorance. so many of us are not really listening, we’re going through the motions, even though most of us don’t like the motions, don’t like the game, don’t want to play.
imagine if we were able to be like Ben, taking in every moment, as the moment.
imagine if we focused more on knowing each other. a 24/7 experience.