Friday, January 19, 2007

Fully awake, Fully Active, Fully Aware

It has been noted that leadership is ultimately about "seeing reality". Joseph Jaworski is work echoes this notion when he writes: “It’s not about positional power; it’s not about accomplishments; it’s ultimately not even about what we do. Leadership is about creating a domain in which human beings continually deepen their understanding of reality and become more capable of participating in the unfolding of the world. Ultimately, leadership is about creating new realities.”

For Christians, that ultimate reality is God. Thomas Merton comments that the Biblical discipline of contemplation, as the "highest expression of man's intellectual and spiritual life" facilitates this understanding of ultimate reality. Merton writes: "Contemplation is the highest expression of man's intellectual and spiritual life. It is that life itself, fully awake, fully active, fully aware that it is alive. It is spiritual wonder. It is spontaneous awe at the sacredness of life of being. It is gratitude for life, for awareness and for being. It is a vivid realization of the fact that life and being in us proceed from an invisible, transcendent and infinitely abundant source. Contemplation is, above all, awareness of the reality of that Source."

Further Reading:
Jaworski, J 1998. Synchronicity: The Inner Path of Leadership. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler Publishers.
Merton, T 1961. New Seeds of Contemplation, The Abbey of Gethsemani.