OPEN PDF TO VIEW & READ: ‘Acceptance & Change Talk‘ [Paul Burke’s M.I. TIP of the Week #1823]

INTRO COVER LETTER: Greetings all ye Canadian MI folk – from Calgary, Alberta

As I write this today, I’m waiting for a change of planes in the airport in Calgary. I have a long wait for my next flight, so I’ve been working away on my computer in the WestJet lounge here. I’ve just finished with a “discussion” with a woman who is waiting for a delayed flight to Philadelphia. The US President and his policies and perspectives was the subject of our conversation – and it was a shocking and alarming experience for me. She was adamant that his tough policies on immigration were necessary. She said that “otherwise we’ll end up being a nation of brown people with no connection to our heritage.
At one point, she said “I’m tolerant of people who are different, but I can’t tolerate the idea that someday they might be in the majority”. I was astounded. (Fascinating too that she was headed to Philadelphia. The word “Philadelphia” originates from two words meaning “Brotherly Love”. I guess not always).

Reflecting on this woman’s views triggered me to reflect on a visit that I made a few years ago to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. museum in Atlanta, Georgia. I’ve always liked what I knew about Dr. King and his views, but after spending an entire day at the museum, I came to respect his views on “race acceptance” even more. And what was best about him, in my opinion, was his perspective on the concept of “tolerance of others”.

Dr. King did not believe in “tolerance”. He was adamant that “acceptance” is a more important human virtue – much superior to the elitist notion that “I can tolerate your differences, but I don’t have to accept them”. Dr. Miller, one of the lead progenitors of MI, shares that perspective. So much does he share that view that in the MI-3 text, he explains that “acceptance” is a fundamental component of the spirit (read “climate” or “environment”) required in order for MI to facilitate change.

T.I.P. #1823 is about acceptance trumping tolerance – and it’s role in awakening dreams.