In our VUCA world, confused and confounded by the rapid global spread of covid19, we may be viewing the unexpected emergence of a superordinate goal that is quickly aligning a plurality of nations, cities, citizens and experts to work together for survival.
A superordinate goal (a term coined by Dr. Don Beck, co-author of Spiral Dynamics) is a goal that transcends and includes multiple other goals so that all stakeholders work together. This empowering alignment has the capacity to resolve often contradictory, opposing and polarized factions. A superordinate goal is the anchor, attractor and energizer for the emergence of a Meshwork.
Ironically , to wake up the world to the superordinate goal, it has taken a disease that threatens the practical, political and personal survival of individuals and collectives. As the covid19disease spreads, takes its tolls and stretches all our resourcefulness, a veil is parting that reveals our need to cooperate and collaborate to survive this microbial threat. More than that, as it travels is it revealing the necessity for us to honour universal ONEness, our vast interconnectedness and our need to align strategies, resources and compassion on multiple levels of complexity?
As I write this newsletter, I am involved in the Findhorn Community’s response to strengthening our personal and collective immunity. We continue in service to the health of our Planet and the transformation of our being/doing/relating/co-creating courses and activities. However, even as we affirm our service to Life, Love and Learning, we have made difficult decisions to close down our classes and cease operations for 2 months. We respond both proactively to our own decisions for community wellbeing, as well as the National Health Service guidelines and federal edits. At the same time, we are faced with economic questions about supporting our co-workers, the wider community and assisting our most vulnerable.
Simultaneously, we also invest ever more intentionally in the practices that are our strengths: Deep Inner Listening, Co-creating with the Intelligences of Nature, Work as Love in Action, Living Roots of Community and Attunement to Collective Consciousness. All of these ways of being give us an Overview of Wholeness and how we can serve Wellbeing – cosmically, globally and locally.
On one level witnessing the covid19 challenges to both our local conditions and our worldwide systems provokes a personal retrospective of all the disasters I have experienced – and survived – in my lifetime.
Let me count the ways: polio epidemic, prairie blizzards, Caribbean hurricanes, Fraser delta floods, Y2K technology bug, 9/11 World Trade Centre, SARS, Avian Flu, 2008 Financial Crisis US, 2010 Financial Crisis EU, Climate COPS (+++), Forest Fires (BC, California, Australia, Brazil).
From some perspectives, I feel that I have been preparing all my life for this moment. As a teenager I was inoculated by Ayn Rand’s Objectivist Theory and bleak condemnation of the impacts of communism. From those young days till now, I can’t remember all the times that I have prepared emergency supplies of food, water, currency and shelter. I am deeply grateful that the very resilience of society, community, family and self have enabled survival till now.
It is a comfort and inspiration to be in a community where we have expertise and energy ready to cooperate and collaborate in a multitude of ways: creating a situation committee; diarizing our daily contacts; mapping our disease incidence; contacting the most vulnerable; volunteering to help; communicating our responses; controlling our food consumption; planning for food production and distribution; experimenting with “take-outs” instead of “eat-ins”; offering zoom and video conferencing within the community to stay connected; connecting on Social Media with the rest of the world.
In short, I am amazed at the effectiveness of the covid19 threat to catalyze a superordinate goal around which cooperation and collaboration appears to be happening around the world. Essentially, I see us enacting the Master Code of Care – for Self/Others/Place/Planet. Furthermore, I notice that we are Thinking Cosmically. Feeling Globally. Acting Locally (as Jude Currivan propounds).
And I am curious what are the qualities of this situation that quickened the system so swiftly, when the decades of scientific evidence, activist pleading and an infinity of efforts around Climate Change could not align us? Is it as simple as the threat’s Time is right Now? It’s Space of impact is right Here (personally)? It’s Moral Influence is Everyone?
Are those the qualities that make the Superordinate Goal irresistible, irrefutable and inevitable?