Sunday, May 24, 2009

Increasing Our Range of Vision! Currently America is having a few economic problems. Well, actually we are having more than just economic problems. I think a good deal of our problems are related to our collective lack of vision. Our founding fathers had a vision unique to history and America was the result, but they are all dead. Their vision was so far reaching that we still use it as a road map…but maps get old as the terrain changes. The best way to solve America’s vision problem is to increase our own. Vision is contagious! If we can see a better way for ourselves the light from that certainty will shine like a beacon over the darkness of others. Some near us will see what we see and the vision will spread. But how do we build vision? We are the 30-second generation. If it can’t be explained, understood, or seen in 30 seconds we lose interest and move on. Our forefathers were given to exploring their visions at great length. They argued passionately until all edges of their theories were tested against the theories of others. They didn’t always agree, but their individual ideas were well beyond the thirty-second limit. So how do we find the vision that we need to get us through troubled times? I remember an old Cherokee story teller laughing at how the Euro men thought Columbus had discovered America and proved the earth was round at the same time. “We always knew the earth was round,” he said, “and we were not lost or in need of discovery!” This old man told me how the Tsalagi lived in many villages before the diseases from Europe decimated them. He said if you look down the path, there was always a high spot in the path beyond which you couldn’t see. He said if you walked to the high spot, a whole new sight would open up and another high spot would be revealed. The old man told me a long walk gave one plenty of time to think. If you keep adding up the high spots and you think about it, it becomes obvious that the high spots are just ends of a curve and if you add up the curves…you get a circle. “We dance in circles, you know! We always knew the earth was a circle!” Ask any old Indian about circles. Any of them can tell you that, they don’t even have to be Cherokee!” he said with a grin. I already knew the earth was round, but I learned something else from the old man’s story. I thought about the walk from one village to the next and all the changing horizons in the path. As we begin a long trip, we can’t see our destination at the beginning. We can see the edge of that circle where the horizon moves down beyond our vision. We have to believe there is something beyond it. We see beyond the edge as a mental haze…but we can see if we use our imagination to fill in the details of the blur. We can’t see the actual village but we can see our mental image of that village. Once we have the expanded vision of that which is beyond what we can clearly see, we are motivated to move closer. The closer we get to the edge, the clearer we can see the old vision and the more we are enabled to build new vision in our mind’s eye. As I practiced looking beyond, I realized something else was happening. Once I looked beyond the horizon directly in front of me and punched ahead, a new range of capacity opened up. It was a simple process taking only a few seconds to complete but a lot of words to describe. By observing the details that were near and the way they changed as they got closer to the horizon line I could see a story develop which hinted of details to come. The hint of things to come was my expanded vision. Once I did this looking straight ahead, I could turn my head and a whole new range opened up. Ever how far I could see ahead in my path, I could see that far ahead as I scanned all around. Now that was a much bigger vision than that which I could see. We stand at the center of our own little universe, but if we look beyond our horizons, we can see. It is a huge new vision! We know it is not a complete vision so as we choose any of the infinite paths leading to that new expanded vision, we adjust the details as we go. Always we should look ahead and let that larger vision build from the story told by the changing of details near and far and the hint of things to come. Randy Cox

No comments:

Post a Comment