Dialogue and the Radical Middle

Dialogue is radical.  It’s not just “love your enemy;” it’s actually talking to them.  Loving someone is nice and abstract, and easy to do especially from a distance (including a morally superior distance).

Dialogue is much more challenging since it involves not only talking, but also listening, respecting, and suspending (stepping back from your own position — and ego — in order to listen more clearly).

The idea of the Radical Middle, or Radical Center, is closely related to “bi-partisanship.”  It doesn’t mean joining the mushy Center.  You can keep your ideas and your perspectives, but you have to take the radical step of actually listening to other perspectives and looking for solutions together that can take many views, needs, and experiences into account.

Dialogue and the Radical Middle are examples of collective intelligence (combining many facts and perspectives) that take a giant step towards collective consciousness.

(written 5/20/2009)

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