Friday, 23 August 2013

Reflective image of the week: Citi Zen and self reflection

And more on mindfulness in the everyday... I'm noticing the interrelationship between self reflection and systems change thinking (the small in the big, or more, the big in the small as my tai chi teacher would say). Spotted this image on Flickr via Michael Coghlan and immediately saw the words "Citi Zen" and connected with mindfulness (perhaps as a Zen practice?) and the need to grow the "mindful citizen".

Citi Zen Restauant
Photo by Michael Coghlan on Flickr

As the participating services engage with the Elders in their organizational review process, there's a need to create new spaces for conversations, a new shared language and more inclusive consensus building processes. More and more I'm convinced that none of this can occur without a person being self reflective and mindful of how they engage with others, despite the broader systems change references we've been referring to in the Project. We're talking about building relationships and deepening them. We can only do this skillfully if we are mindful of how we relate to others. From there it seems all the more likely that systems change can occur authentically and sustainably.

Also in the image, I noticed the juxtaposition of the tree in front of the building; two structures representing two different expressions of different worldviews. How do these work together? What environmental conditions help them to do so productively and sustainably? This is the work service providers are about to embark on as they work together with Nyoongar Elders in a process we are naming as decolonization (of service based workplaces). We have come to understand this to mean:
Decolonization is a process, not an outcome; it involves an ongoing discussion between those who are beneficiaries of colonialist practices and those who have been impacted by colonization. One of the key objectives of decolonization is to reconstruct and rewrite the discourses and practices that reinforce the principles of colonization to include those silenced voice.*

* Tiffin H, 2006, 'Post-colonial Literatures and Counter-discourse', in The Post-Colonial Studies Reader, 2nd Edn, Eds Ashcroft B, Griffiths G & H Tiffin, Routledge, London, pp. 99-101.