|Posted on 27 January, 2016 at 15:10||comments (1)|
Initially, I was going to make this a very rigorous academic explanation but decided to just tell the story. So here goes!
When I first heard the word “capacity” I didn’t like it. It sounded limited. Constrained! Capped! However, there was no other word at the time to use so I reluctantly used the word capacity for many years. Every time I used or heard it, I cringed! Maybe it had to do with my “educating” mindset that I couldn’t accept the word.
I heard the word capacity came from the technology lexicon, which means it started to be used in the late 70’s and early 80’s. If memory serves me right, it was during my interaction with a government official when I first heard the word. I may have associated the word with a government official. If I didn’t hear it from a government official I may have treated or responded differently. In Native country dealing with government officials has not always been pleasant to say the least.
Now everyone uses the word. Even the Chiefs! Professors. All or most disciplines. It’s expected on all proposals. News announcements mention developing the capacity of the people. Government people continually use the word in their programs and services. Non – profit organizations throw the word around like Manitoba snowflakes!
So I know this is going to be like rolling a bolder uphill, considering people are habitual by nature anyway. A few years ago when I represented a provincial organization in Ontario I deliberately made it known I didn’t like the word capacity and to use other words describing the outcome of capacity. There were so many slip – ups I ignored it after a while, knowing it’s ingrained in their mind.
I was wandering around a bookstore and went to my favorite sections – the business and psychology sections. The book, Scarcity – The New Science of Having Less and How it Defines our Lives – jumped out at me. I devoured the book in one sitting. On page 13 it reads, “Because we are preoccupied by scarcity, because our minds constantly return to it, we have less mind to give to the rest of life. This is more than a metaphor. We can directly measure mental capacity or, as we call it, bandwidth.” The word bandwidth stuck with me since. I have used it on many occasions and find myself explaining the origins and meaning of the word. However, when I just tell people that I prefer using bandwidth over capacity they appear to understand immediately.
A few more pages down on page 41, it reads, “The concept of less mind is well studied by psychologists. Though careful research in psychology employs several find distinctions to capture this idea, we will use the simple umbrella term bandwidth to cover them all. Bandwidth measures our computational capacity, our ability to pay attention, to make good decisions, to stick with our plans, and to resist temptations. Bandwidth correlates with everything from intelligence and SAT performance to impulse control and success on diets”.
As you can read the word capacity is still used but takes a secondary seat in the grand scheme of what the mind is able to do. The mind is much more than what we think it is. Each person who has read up to this point has their own interpretation of the content shared here and that’s what makes the mind much more than the word capacity. The mind can expand, grow, develop, increase, create, imagine, envision, and so forth. Hence the word, MINDWIDTH. YOU and only you can determine the width of your mind. It’s very private and personal.
|Posted on 14 April, 2015 at 14:50||comments (0)|
I have been observing corporations much more than I would like to these days. Perhaps it is related to the thesis I am getting ready to write or perhaps it is because I am waking up!
Everywhere you and I go there are corporations and another corporation with so-called corporate property. Everything has become a corporate everything! That is what the person(s) behind the corporations would like all of us to continue to believe, for infinity. Since there has not been an active tribal system for over 140 years or so or even a monarchy on this side of the world, then corporations disguised as so-called governments determine the rules. They have four years, each time to establish their mark, and we have seen how hard they try especially when their term is coming to an end.
Corporations are everywhere! I opened up the Webster’s Universal Dictionary, and this is what is described as a corporation, “a group of people authorized by law to act as one individual: a city or town council”. First I looked up what it said about people. It defines people as, “the body of enfranchised citizens of the state. Okay, then I looked at enfranchised, which means “to admit to citizenship”. Then I decided to look up “individual”. It says, “existing as a separate thing or being; of, by, for or relating to a single person or thing; distinctive; a single thing or being; a person. Okay, let's go even further down the rabbit hole. A person is, “a human being, individual; the body (including clothing) of a human being; a character; one who is recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties. Going even much deeper now! No, I am not trying to hypnotize you, but it’s certainly something done to most of us, knowingly or unknowingly. A thing is described as an inanimate object; an event; an action; possessions. You can just keep going in circles with all of this.
Other than the usual definition and understanding of what a corporation is, I would like to draw your attention to other aspects of the corporate world. In particular, the unintended effects of corporations and I say unintended because I have a hard time believing all of this would be intentional. On the other hand, it may be intentional without knowing it’s intentional.
Before I go there, here is something else to ponder. If we accept the hypothesis of the corporate world, then who owns the person? We know a person can create and own a corporation or several corporations. The corporation is registered with another corporation by another corporation. As mentioned, everywhere we go there is a corporation, even the person you are engaging or engaged before reading this article is a corporation. In fact, if I can boldly say, you’re a corporation.
A person is a corporation at the moment parents registers their children. The moment the birth certificate is signed. Every one of us, knowingly or unknowingly, has signed our children over to the corporation, making them corporations without their consent.
|Posted on 25 March, 2015 at 11:15||comments (0)|
There are no guarantees of achieving sales success in today’s accelerated, competitive and what has been described as the long-tailed business world in recent years. On the other hand, people with the jobs or employment may be doing something they really love to do and are also in sales. In either case, activity in the private, public and people sectors are all involved in different forms of selling. There are countless definitions and reactions to sales and selling as there are minds.
I love business and entrepreneurship, especially the marketing side of business activity because in marketing, we are dealing with so many aspects of psychology as well as people’s wallet. People have all different types of buying criteria. For example price, convenience, and packaging are all different for everyone and marketers know that. In one television sitting of one hour you are exposed to a minimum of 30 commercials running in duration of 30 seconds to 90 seconds. Depending on the television program, the marketing messages are targeted to a specific audience. Repetition is noticeable!
In my younger years, I remember a merchant coming to my community in Northern Manitoba with his goods. Potato chips, cola, chocolate bars, chips and a host of other “junk food”. He asked many of the young, hungry, impoverished youth to help him unload the truck. That was his first mistake. Now here was a gentlemen coming into our community to provide another option to the infamous HBC now called some other brand. As we were hauling the boxes out of the truck, for every two boxes we placed on the ground, the next one disappeared into the darkness of the reserve (community) because there were no street lights. As young people, we didn’t know any better. We were hungry. We took advantage of the situation for our own purposes at the expense of the entrepreneur that came into our community. I remember his behavior. Not the irate behavior he demonstrated once he found out we were walking away with his goods but the entrepreneurial side of his behavior. The selling side of his behavior. Perhaps it was at this time I decided to become a business person. In hindsight, all I knew up to that point was the consumer side of things. Never was I ever introduced to the idea of being the producer.
Years later I would learn about the distinction between a producer and a consumer. Not to over simplify the distinction too much, the producer creates something or offers something of perceived value. The consumer, well consumes based on his exchangeable assets or what he has in his pockets.
Sales and selling are on the producing or the production side of the equation. Buying is on the consuming or consumer side of the equation. When people are always on the buying or consumer side of the equation, can they see the sales or production side of the coin? Think about the same question for the other side. When people are always on the sales or producing side of the equation, can you see the buying or consumer side? Which would you rather have and why?
|Posted on 12 March, 2015 at 16:05||comments (0)|
I don’t remember when I first heard this word, “ambition”, but it sits somewhere in my memories. However, if memory does serve me right, I initially recall the word being used pejoratively or insinuated in a negative context. My teachers were nuns, priests, and missionaries at the time. Then not long afterward when I was a teen, I would hear the same word again. This time, the word was being used in an idolized fashion describing an individual that achieved something very noteworthy. From there, I concluded the word, and this applies to any other word, can be used in whatever context and meaning we give it.
Ambition! It can lead to so many things that can change the world! An individual with ambition is responsible for all of the new commodities, products, services and experiences we consume on a daily basis. If there was no ambition, we would still have the same old commodities, products and services from 50 years ago!
When I think of all of the experiences of First Nation (Aboriginal) people in the last 100 years, I am truly amazed that ambition is still very much alive and well despite the deliberate attempts to eradicate it from the hearts of the people. If ambition is related to hope, aspiration, dreams, goals and achievements then clearly all of the attempts to eradicate “Ambition Capital” in Native country has failed. However, every other form of capital has been assigned to an external government, which means the control is highly misplaced.
This is not to say some Ambition Capital has not been inadvertently assigned to the trusteeship model. There are still too many First Nation (Aboriginal) people who are deeply dependent on the Trustee to take care of them. We have experienced how the Trustee has taken care of First Nation (Aboriginal) peoples. Every statistic is reflective of the kind of job they have done. Nevertheless, the Trustee will take care of its interest first before doing what needs to get done on their fiduciary role as Trustee.
Regardless, there is still enough Ambition Capital in First Nation (Aboriginal) country to spark a movement. Idle no more is a great spark! The thousands of First Nation (Aboriginal) entrepreneurs and business people are a great spark! The elected leaders who have not forgotten why they became elected leaders are a great spark! However, we just need a little more sparks!
The one statistic in First Nation (Aboriginal) people’s favor or advantage is the young people. There are a lot of young people who will find ambition or be ambitionless. I am hoping they will find ambition. There are enough role models, and not to say we could use more, to encourage ambition in the many disciplines and occupations out there.
We need to help our young people find a reason to get out of bed. Not only with the young people, but all people of all ages who have become too lethargic as well. When there is no purpose, no ambition, we allow the Trustees to continue to spoon - feed our people just enough to keep us alive while they continue to starve ambition and feed dependency.
|Posted on 2 March, 2015 at 13:25||comments (0)|
The Esseence of 7 Grandfather Teachings
500 - To experience Love is to recognize enlightenment;
450 - To value knowledge is to discern Wisdom;
400 - Truth is to distinguish beliefs and reality of all things;
350 - Honesty in facing a situation with integrity;
300 - Humility is to identify yourself as a sacred part of Creation;
250 - To honour all of Creation is to have Respect;
200 - Courage is to face adversity without force.
|Posted on 2 March, 2015 at 13:25||comments (0)|
Applying the 7 Grandfather Teachings from a Leadership Position
I have been asked several times how leadership can apply the 7 Grandfather Teachings. To frame this article in this context, I am going to suggest looking at this question from a Band Manager, Community Executive Director or Community Manager perspective because I can relate to this since I worked in these functions before. I can theoretically present the content from a Chief and Council perspective as well. However, I will stick with the management leadership opinion.
First of all, I am reminded of the teachings from the beaver presented in my last article. To paraphrase, in the teaching, it says the beaver has to use its teeth to do what it does; otherwise the teeth keep growing and could kill him. All human beings have gifts, and this teaching applies. If you don’t use your gifts, metaphorically you starve your spirit. If you don’t feed the spirit that holds your purpose, then some other part of you is being fed, and it is usually the groveling kind.
The reason for bringing up the concept of gifts is because that is what the 7 Grandfather Teachings are. They are gifts from the Creator for us to use in any and all parts of our life. Since we spend most of the time in an organization, where we interact with other human beings, this is the best place to apply the 7 Grandfather Teachings. Some would argue it should start at home but for argument sakes, let’s focus on the workplace. As you know, the workplace environment in First Nation (Aboriginal) country is challenging, to say the least. Every organization is perplexing by its very nature because human beings create and bring their vitality to organizations.
First Nation (Aboriginal) organizations have so many variables at play at any given time and this is the challenge of management leadership. Organizations are place – based, meaning whatever happens in that organization is not necessarily the same as the one in the next community. The dynamics are different because of the relationships developed through the years in the community. Everyone that works in the community organization has a history, good, bad and indifferent in regards to their relationship with their family, friends and other relatives, far and wide.
As a Leader, there are certain things expected of you. The most obvious expectation is to lead. When you lead, you exude all types of messages, spoken and unspoken. Keep in mind, when you lead, you cannot NOT communicate. Another thing is the meaning of your communication is the response you get. What this means is, no matter what your intentions were when you said or did something, what is going to be acted on is what the listener or interpreter does with the content is what counts.
Although I have presented the 7 Grandfather Teachings in a linear, logical fashion using the levels of consciousness as presented by Dr. David Hawkins as a guide does not mean that is how they are applied. Anyone one of the 7 Grandfather Teachings is appropriate in any given situation. Be it one, two or all of them at the same time. You need to practice the principle of requisite variety. Requisite implies essential, and variety implies variability. If you find nothing is changing in your situation, do something different! As human beings, we have been given the greatest gift of all and that’s our consciousness. Without a certain level of consciousness, we wouldn’t be aware of life itself.
|Posted on 16 February, 2015 at 11:50||comments (0)|
When I first heard about the “Grandfathers”, I was expecting physical beings, old people to enter the room, but no one walked in. Instead, I quickly realized the word Grandfathers referred to the “Grandfather Teachings”, which is an idea, a concept, being shared with eager participants like myself. That was over 38 years ago when I was a young man looking to find my roots. In those days, it was rare; I would find a venue where this kind of information was being shared. I considered it a true blessing at the time.
Throughout the years, I have heard the Grandfather Teachings from many different elders, traditional people, and educators, and this has helped me establish my understanding of the teachings. The elders, traditional people and educators of the Anishinabek Nation have articulated the teachings more so than any other Nation. It is not to say the Anishinabek people invented the 7 Grandfather Teachings because other Nations throughout Turtle Island still have their form of family, clan’s, and community. Animal symbols or clans are connected with the Grandfather Teachings, and every Nation has them.
For centuries, the Grandfather Teachings have guided the relationship amongst Indigenous (Native) people. Each of the Grandfather Teachings is relevant when engaging another human being. Elders and traditional people have said nature gave the Grandfather Teachings to human beings. Nature or what Indigenous (Aboriginal) people refer to as “Mother Earth” have all of the teachings we, “human beings”, need to get along with each other.
The Indigenous (Native) people of Turtle Island remain gifted with the Grandfather Teachings as originally established by the Creator when giving out the instructions on human living. All human beings have these teachings. The way the Grandfather Teachings are bundled is intentional to guide the relationships amongst all living entities, especially human beings. Everything, including oneself, is gifted with the Grandfather Teachings and embodied in the human form. In other words, the fifty or so trillion plus cells in the human body have the message of the Grandfather Teachings encoded in the body.
In contemporary times, the Grandfather Teachings are mentioned, discussed, depicted in many forms and the essence of the teachings remains the same. The challenge is living them as originally instructed by the Creator. This challenge is examined as it relates to living the Grandfather Teachings today. The real question relates to the obvious gap between communicating the teachings and living the teachings. Participants can draw from examples in their everyday experiences to learn more about how the Grandfather Teachings manifest in their day to day life. The content for the Grandfather Teachings of today can be found in the work of Art Solomon, Dr. Gregg Braden, Dr. Bruce Lipton, and Dr. David R. Hawkins, to name a few.
Based on my visits with elders, traditional people and educators, I offer the following sequence of the Grandfather Teachings to reflect the levels of energy inherent in each of them. In the preferred order for understanding the Grandfather Teachings, we start with Courage, then Respect, followed by Humility, Honesty, Truth, Wisdom, and Love.
Indigenous (Aboriginal) elders, traditional people, and educators have said numerous times; the Grandfather Teachings will become valid knowledge once again. However, in some ways, they have already, but still have a long way to go for learners to apply them in our daily life. There is a lot of talk about them, but not demonstrated through behavior. I also believe the Grandfather Teachings can contribute immensely to the world of government and business, especially in the leadership and management space.
|Posted on 14 February, 2015 at 0:50||comments (0)|
Words are things. Words have physical power. Words create thought, just as thought creates words. Thoughts and words are closely related as is actions and results.
The words, “Natural Resources”, and, in particular, the word, “resources” is what I want to bring to your direct attention. According to dictionary.com, the contemporary usage of the word of Natural Resources emerged around 1865-1870. Natural Resources is considered to be a noun to mean, the natural wealth of a country, consisting of land, forests, mineral deposits, water, etc. From the thefreedictionary.com, they define natural resources as “a material source of wealth, such as timber, fresh water, or a mineral deposit, which occurs in a natural state and has economic value”. Most of these definitions contain the concepts of wealth and economic value for human beings, but not for Mother Earth.
If we use the period of 1865 as the starting point, we can say it has not taken long for the human race to experience this precarious position because of how people treat Mother Earth. If we continue to treat Mother Earth as a “resource”, we are not going to survive the next 150 years! At the rate we are going, Mother Earth is not healthy and will find ways to correct or remedy her ailments with or without us.
We have a choice. Let’s start with a new definition or label of Mother Earth. Rather than resource I propose vendor. Resource implies control. Resource is a one-way relationship. Resource is externally focused. Vendor, on the other hand, implies an exchange or a price to pay for value. As it is, everything is commoditized. There is no sense in attempting to change this part of the human vascular.
According to Google, a vendor is the seller, especially of property. In this perspective, Mother Earth is the vendor. As with any vendor, there is a price to pay. We need to determine how we are going to pay for what we take or consume from Mother Earth. It could be as simple as offering tobacco and a prayer before taking or claiming something from Mother Earth. It could be putting everything back to the way it was a closely as possible. It could be allowing Mother Earth time to heal itself.
Back when I lived with my grandparents on the trap line, they would always offer something back to Mother Earth if they took something. Be it tobacco, an offering of food or both. They would offer it to the fire, the river, the rock, the trees, the grass, the wind and with a prayer. Everyplace was considered sacred and still is. I didn’t have the awareness to ask why they did what they did. Today I can only deduce the reasons why they did what they did. What I concluded from that experience was an exchange of value for what they took. The concept of reciprocity was long well-known long before I lived on the trap line.
|Posted on 14 February, 2015 at 0:45||comments (0)|
Indigenous (Native) ceremonies have been around for centuries. Today, the most common ceremonies are sweat lodge, pow-wows, both traditional and competitive, fasting, pipe, and naming ceremonies to name a few. Other more involved ceremonies are ghost dance, dark – room, Yuwipi, rain or sun dance ceremonies. In all cases, elders are at the center of these activities and perhaps traditional or younger people gifted with a particular ceremony, lead the ceremony. The conductor, moderator or operator is an important factor in these events. Without them, the event would be nonsensical.
All ceremonies require a conductor or an operator and their many physical and spiritual helpers to aid the seekers listen within. The main purpose of ceremony is to listen within. In our everyday life, we receive messages from our environment, our body, conscious and sub-conscious minds. The conductor and his or her helpers, the ceremony itself, and the seekers all work primarily with the area of the mind known as the subconscious or more specifically, the modern memory area. The modern memory area contains all the memories from conception to present in this life.
When I attended my first Yuwipi ceremony, I did not know what to expect. I have to admit, I was a little nervous about the whole thing. I was not at all skeptical, just nervous. However, once things got going, I wholeheartedly immersed myself into the whole experience, and quickly forgot about my anxiety. It was dark. Totally dark! I heard the songs, the drums, the rattles, and smelled the medicines. I quickly went into a trance! All of the external stimuli were internalized. I started listening within (Audendos).
According to written records about the Ghost Dance ceremony and its more contemporary version called the Yuwipi ceremony, they all induce various levels of trance, whether the conductor or in the hypnotist case, operator intended it or not. Under these conditions, the mind is wide open; meaning the critical area of the mind has been by-passed, and has become highly suggestible. Since there is no such thing as pure mind control, suggestibility is at the heart of hypnosis. Hypnotic suggestibility is nothing more than receptive learning by listening within (Audendos).
Hypnosis uses words and there is a fair amount of suggestion going on. Suggestibility is much more effective when a person is completely relaxed. When an individual is completely relaxed they are in between a conscious and sleep state. They are in a trance. In this state, their sense of awareness is heightened, however they can be engaged with verbal instructions. There are many different suggestible (Audendos) states and different people respond differently to each of them. Each person listens within, differently.
When the Egyptians and Greeks were practicing their sleep (hypnos) temple ceremonies, they were practicing the various forms of listening within. When Antoine Mesmer began practicing animal magnetism in the mid 1700’s, he was encouraging seekers to listen within. James Braid adopted the term hypnotism in the mid 1800’s (which specifically applied to the state of the subject, rather than techniques applied by the operator) to contrast his own, unique, subject-centered, approach with those of the operator-centered mesmerists who preceded him.
|Posted on 26 November, 2012 at 19:05||comments (0)|