rethinking our values

Value and Values in Community  – Patrick Pinson  10/07  From an old writing


In the “Personal Growth Groups” I have led, I did an exercise in listing each participant’s values…what they held as most sacred in their lives.  It was revealing to them to see the similarities of our values. The next step was to explore our time spent, and how that was consistent with these values.  What is a value, and who establishes these?   In looking at my own values, I made some interesting discoveries.  I approached the question in the light of what I hold as sacred.  Values that emerged for me in my ongoing process of discovery are:: the honor and privilege of raising a four year old daughter in a way that can help in providing her a future that draws out her highest potential.    Honesty, courage, trust, a sense of humor, integrity, loyalty, intelligence, openness and transparency, playfulness, creativity, caring, consistency, peacefulness, spirituality, clarity, passion and a zest of life.

In today’s Industrial model, this inner search for what is important and these values are generated outside of us with a bombardment of negative news, fear and chaos.  .  We go to work at jobs where a dollar value is put on us.  We are worth $7, $10, $100 or whatever an hour, and we rarely even question this, as many are caught in the trap of “getting out of debt” rather than “getting into the flow of the unlimited abundance of the Universe..  How do we afford those things we deeply value.  How can we afford not to?

My value is immeasurable.  There is no one who can establish what our value is, that has to come from deep within, and as we begin to do this inner healing with others on a similar aligned commitment, in shamanism called “soul retrieval” and heal our generational cycles of abuse, we begin to hold ourselves sacred.  In recovery from addiction, I was told that they would love me until I could love myself.  Alcoholics enter the gates of sobriety with a complete surrender coupled with a deflation of false pride.

When my values are clear to me, I may align my values and my actions.  Integrity to me is when word and deed are congruent, which evokes trust, a major lubricant that makes community work.  The word community to many implies something outside of themselves, yet the “inner community” is the work prefacing the outer community.  An Intentional community is something that reduces random community.  If I move into any area of the land, I do not get to choose my neighbors.  I aspire to create a community of friends, warriors, lovers, magicians and king/queens.  These archetypes first must be developed inside of me, or I will seek in others which I do not accept (deny) in  myself.  A beautiful way of describing Love is “I love in you the qualities I love in me”.  Conversely, “I hate in you the qualities I hate in me”.  In recovery from addictive and co-dependent patterns, the keys are acceptance and willingness.  If these ingredients are present, then a recovery to wholeness is possible.  Without these, we become victims always seeking outside of ourselves that which lies atrophied inside.

I remember reading in a book on eco-psychology that the word savage has its roots in Bly’s “Iron John”, the “uninitiated male energy” Michael Mead speaks of – that raw – untamed masculine power which, without training can become violence.  It is the source of destruction and creation.  This energy is  animated – alive and moving.  Animated means alive, free flowing and absent of clutter.  A child like my little Jasmine helps me rediscover this each day.   She is real, authentic and plays whole heartedly in all that she does.  She feels her feelings, has boundless energy and is sometimes defiant – which I intend (unskilled as I am) to evolved into a inner disciplined, independent, esteemed and  socially responsible (able to respond) child.  I intend also to draw out her potential so that she might transcend survival and thrive, use her innate gifts and be of service to others, i.e. higher values of love, unity and service.  As I ponder the mission and purpose of a non-profit corporation which several of my friends and I are working on, I see my own unclarity is conveying just what it is I am intending to do in a way that most anyone can understand and align with.  Accountability and accounting for has been a weakness of mine up until now which is a major reason for me breaking out of the box in business and working for myself – and in fact I have learned much about inner discipline, accounting (accountability) and how to be productive.  What has atrophied in that process is play.  My gift of Jasmine is an opportunity to heal that atrophy, yet I find myself in a workaholics mode many of the hours she is here, and I fell off balance a lot of the time.

In recovery form and twelve step work, I remember a model for the balanced life as being divided into four areas – work, play, love and support. (my own interpretation of the work, play, love and AA that I read in some book.  As I watch the busyness escalate all inside of me and around me, I see this as an area not only in myself but many of my friends that has atrophied.  My drum circles and the way that I lead them is the one anchor for me on a weekly basis to be at play, which is defined as having no agenda,    And offer others that same opportunity. In the upcoming Heartspace classes, I intend to risk more of who I am and what tools I bring that have helped me evolve into a more balanced life that includes play, work, lots of friends to love and be loved by and a sense of support – a deep connection to the earth that the drum brings me.


Staying “Right” size.  In my business, I keep learning each day the importance of balance.  Connecting my work with my play, my family and my prayer and meditation and creating space for those values I deeply hold.  Work, Play, Love and support, equally divided is m intention each day.

Looking west

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *