beloved life practices 10: become polyphonic


REFLECTION: ‘Two talking heads. With two opposing views. And only one can be right. Get two experts or affected parties on the sofa, and let them battle it out. This may work, but it can encourage a dualistic way of looking at the world, where only one answer is the right answer, and where the last voice speaking wins. This kind of dualistic thinking shores up our own sense of rightness. But perhaps something more subtle, more generous and more hopeful is necessary if we are to bring goodness to the world in these demanding times…


beloved life: become polyphonic
beloved life: become polyphonic


PRACTICE: …A good way into a practice of Become Polyphonic is to listen to some polyphonic music – like that of Palestrina… and the next time that you encounter a situation – at home, at work, in your community – in which there seems to be a strong force urging a single answer that excludes all other points of view, ask yourself if polyphony might have a contribution to make. Then ask yourself, how could you, through your words or actions, begin to create space for a diversity of voices to be heard? How could you Become Polyphonic?’

©Ian Adams 2013 ‘Running Over Rocks: spiritual practices to transform tough times’ (Canterbury Press)

Look out for short daily posts around this week’s theme on Facebook and Twitter. We’ll be doing the practices wherever we are, and we’ll look forward to hearing how you get on – do let us know!

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