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Friday, June 26, 2015

In conflict it is those who ascribe others as being less who are dehumanizing themselves in order to remove empathy and logic by a changed perspective or paradigm.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Most Americans are familiar with the event that occurred on Tuesday, April 20, 1999, the Columbine High School Massacre. Many questions have been asked in regards to the why’s the how’s, and to what could or should have been done to prevent such wanton disregard for life. The tragedy of death is made more profound in such cases due to the young ages of those killed and doing the killing. They were almost all teenagers most likely just trying to get an education so they could become successfully integrated as adults in society. I am not saying that the shootings would not have taken place, or that free will and agency would somehow become a superimposed interposition, rather that these kids were ill equipped to deal with an unfair and always changing world. It is my belief that if as a country America teaches every student from the third grade to post doctorate, skills in communication and mediation a marked improvement in learning and critical thinking will manifest, as well as a reduction in bullying and violence. I will give as detailed as is needed an overview of what mediation is and how it can/will improve both interpersonal and intrapersonal relations. When teaching communication the first principle is always that of ownership and intrinsic value. If ones’ thoughts and feelings are to be expressed one must have more than just an idea of them, one must be able to articulate them with feeling and empowerment in their expression. The cognitive tools of negotiation are not quite as important and relevant as the knowledge of what one truly desires for the outcome, a part of this is knowing ones B.A.T.N.A. B.A.T.N.A is the acronym for: Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement. Although this seems self explanatory, it better means this, that you know when to walk away and when the agreement on offer is less favorably an alternative to that of having no agreement at all. So the first question one asks one’s self is, what do I really want to take place here? Or what can I be ok with if I can’t get everything that I want? By shifting ones thoughts away from the emotions/feelings of the situation, place is made for logic and fact finding. All parties are asked to bring sincerity and actionable authority to the table, without which the proceedings would have neither teeth nor purpose. Actionable authority means responsibility and follow through on the terms of the agreement akin to a power of attorney. Strategically the mediator has no vested interest in either of the sides cases or outcomes. Two individuals are a simpler scenario when doing dyadic mediation, as soon as one or both sides have multiple interests and responsibilities the terms and types of negotiation change dramatically. All participant parties have had expectations consciously placed upon themselves. This is due the executability of the terms set out at the conclusion of a mediation/negotiation. The acceptance of the terms of the agreement are what give the good faith to an outcomes eventual fulfillment. In a conflict of interests the emotional attachments are elevated and the reasons can be as varied as the disputants. Here is where the skill of detachment in a mediator or individual disputant provides perspective. If neither party is able to detach the feelings from the facts a mediator as a third neutral party can do so, helping both sides to see the validity of perspective that the other may have without pride without guile. The danger of pride is that it blinds one party from seeing any perspective but their own. Pride is the single most destructive attitude in resolving any and every conflict, because pride would dictate that everything fall into a preconceived notion of correctness, thereby negating any new or contrary information out of hand. This is usually manifested in the imbalance of power between teachers, parents or authority figures and the child. In the study carried out by Sellman (2011 pg. 58) where the mediation programs seemed to fail, concluded that “Schools perhaps underestimate the degree to which principles of power and control underpinning the traditional activity have to be transformed in order for new models of activity to be implemented.” Because Sellman was able to prove in the other schools where these changes were implemented and success did follow, one could surmise that it is the empowerment of the individual choice that best affects behavior. 
Above is a model flow chart for improved self mediated experiences; From this chart many things are apparent; initially there is the incident, then the interpretation of perceived intent, followed immediately by the choice of action. For the simplicity of model making, these have been reduced to 3 simple categories: (Crucial Conversations) 1.Withdrawal: The Preservation of Self through a refusal of continued communication and informational exchange. A form of Passive Aggressive Punishment. Conciliation: Validation of Individuality and Autonomy. Reciprocal communication without Judgement. Peace and Safety. Assault: Physical abuse/Emotional abuse. Demands and Pride. Coercion and Manipulation. The flow is as thus: incident, interpretation of intent, emotional response, choice of action. The action choices are simply put, fight, flight, or seeking understanding through limited vulnerability. Underpinning the processes' are mutual respect and mutual purpose, if though there is a break down then a simple apology can reset the process. An apology is not an admission of guilt nor is it a hollow expression, rather it is an acknowledgment of the other persons feelings following the incident and their interpretation of your intent. Between the incident and the emotion or reaction is an interpretation of intent. The intent is what is most important when choosing a reaction. As an example, if two people are playing catch and the ball gets thrown way off and hits somebody the reaction of the three individuals will be different than if that same person throwing, targets and intends harm from hitting that bystander with the ball. The reason for this change in paradigm comes from the interpretation of intents. When resistance or control are the tools of persuasion rather than mutually informed agreements a lack of trust will undermine the entire experience, the imbalance of powers are what perpetuate the problems, but when mutual purpose and mutual respect are the paradigm, success is the likely outcome. Philosophically all have their own paradigm for perception regarding every stimulus of the five senses, due to this schematic difference, truth and fact are very elusive touchstones indeed. It is the recognition of this separately shared experience that allowances for an alternative retelling of events can be made. This lends itself into an experience of understanding, followed by the development of shared purposes and objectives. Because the “truth” of it is we as humans live between the present and the future occupying neither the same place or time beyond that of the now. Because the past was, but no longer is, to try and remain in it is both crazy and impossible. Therefor all that is left is the present/future or the here and now. By looking forward to an acceptable achieved result disputants can move forward in confidence knowing that what was cannot remain and that the future is as yet unwritten and can be constructed into a mutually beneficial scenario for the now and the future where life is (in all actuality) lived. What is past is past and no one can go back and change what was, but one can choose what will be, if having a goal and purpose merits more than damning oneself to the past as is presently perceived. Here again is where pride is so damaging, because pride cares less for what will be than for what once was, it cares more about outside perceptions than it does progress and moving on. The teaching of children these skills and then their teaching of these skills improves greatly the understanding of the principles but it also helps them to become better learners themselves. The study done by Tzuriel (2007) and Shamir provided great insight into the benefits of peers teaching each other in the process. “According to our view, a more experienced peer is one who has been taught how to mediate and has actively used the mediation principles with peers. In this way, he or she becomes not only a better mediator, but also, more important, a better learner. The contribution of this study is by way of suggesting an additional theoretical level to Vygotsky and Feuerstein’s ideas, namely, that mediation for peer mediation is a powerful strategy to facilitate one’s own cognitive processes.” (Tzuriel pg.161) A mediator is better described as a man or woman of faith, hope, and charity. Faith is the knowledge that decisions and actions now will create in the future specific circumstances and results that will eventually become the now, then moving sequentially into the past. Hope is that to which one does not now know but wants to believe in, in what can be, if a strict adherence to congruent behavior is actioned. Charity is allowing for a space to be made between the now, and the future now, where all changes are made, and the implementation of a specified behavior can be developed. Mediators level the balance of power and ensure that the opportunity for understanding is equally provided to all, while also focusing the attention away from that which was, towards a commensurate of what can, or will be. If then these principals hold true it does society on the whole good to have these skills, tools, and techniques taught to it’s rising generation to it’s future leaders who in turn will raise the next generation. “Peer mediation programs may operate in the co-curriculum or in regular classrooms. Adequately implemented peer mediation programs have impressive positive effects, reducing destructive aggressive behavior (and associated suspensions) and developing participants’ understanding, reasoning and social skills, and openness to handle conflict constructively and nonviolently.” (Bickmore, 2002) from these findings Bickmore was able to show a two-thirds to three-fourth reduction in incidents of harassment, bullying and fighting after the peer mediation curriculum had been taught. Divorce rates have been increasing for first time marriages quite steadily for the past sixty years and have an even higher failure rate for second, third, fourth, etc, etc, time remarriages. (census.gov) This could very well be due to thousands of factors among which are a lack of conflict resolution skills, and attitudes towards permanence being temporary. Broken homes leading to broken dreams, creating broken ideas from broken individuals. This is a cycle of avoidance and blame that cannot self correct, nor can change come without an infusion of intelligence, critical thinking or communication techniques and skills. Kenneth Kressel (2007) found that although efforts to create a uniform curriculum and baseline for technique results and implementations vary, (about as much as those who are involved) in a mediated win win scenario are in every study far more likely to experience an improvement in mutually satisfying outcomes. In contrast to the win lose scenario’s of a lawyer based arbitrary resolution in court. Most of his analysis were on divorce cases spanning several years of research. I believe that the change from “my win and your lose” to “how can we both get some, if not all, of what we need and want?” makes all the difference in satisfactory feelings afterwards. In a study done by the University of Oredea, Romania, and Albert Ellis Institute, New York, that showed a moderate change in the behaviors and ideas of self, in eleven to thirteen year olds in the REBE study program. REBE stands for Rational Emotive Behavioral Education. They concluded that the students involved in the study did maintain their skills after being taught in REBE. “Overall, Irrationality was significantly reduced following the Intervention, but moderately increased in the follow-up phase. Harris (1976) showed that children involved in REBE acquired more REBT knowledge and maintained their rational thinking skills after the intervention. Rosenbaum, McMurray and Campbell (1991) also reported improved rationality in fourth grade students following a REBE program. Wilde (1996) and Popa (2004) demonstrated the efficiency of a short REBE intervention in decreasing irrational beliefs in fourth grade students...” (Trip 2010 pg.183) The ability to see the world around you and anticipate cause and effect prior to it’s observation is a key element to the REBE study. If children and later teens or adults do not have the cognizant where withal to foresee an event or to critically observe one they will remain subjected to reactionary impulses and left without strategies that could and should transform a possible negative into a positive or an advantage. By having a realistic or correct perception of self and environment logic and reason rule out over knee jerk reactions and confusion. To further illustrate the importance of early intervention Stepp concluded the following: “Youth who exhibit early antisocial behaviour as well as a combination of poor social skills and peer delinquency may be at particularly high risk for engaging in serious delinquent behaviour in early adulthood. Interventions that begin earlier in development, while these risks and skills are developing, seem particularly important. Promoting the development of social competencies and reducing involvement with delinquent peers may protect at-risk youth from engaging in serious delinquency in early adulthood while increasing their educational success.” (Stepp 2011 pg.464) This study was on anti-social behavior and not mediation yet the authors concluded that early education in mediation skills both reduces bad behavior and associations as well as improving educational participation leading to greater academic success. For the purpose of continuity and a life changing impact I believe that the program could follow this process: In the third grade every three months a class is taught in mediation skills and improved communication. this is followed up every three months until graduation from high school. As a part of the curriculum the year ahead helps to teach the year following in the skills and techniques of mediation. The reading of poetry and analyzation of possible meanings towards development of critical thinking skills. The use of team building exercises and sports to show how working together and staying within a framework of agreed upon expectations benefits all. Participation of all the administrators and teachers in the empowerment of the students being responsible for their learning. Most importantly having family teaching and workshop days, where roles of responsibility are reversed so that perspective and empathy can be reinforced. From the cooperative peer mediation teaching and later implementation the students would be well equipped to deal with disappointments and conflict's growing into better citizens and leaders in the community. By definition a nation is made up of a people who share geographic location, culture, language, government and resources. I can see no down side to properly expressing, intelligently teaching and patiently guiding children into becoming co-adults and responsible citizens. But what I do see is an apocalyptic disintegration of the fabrics of society if we as human beings cannot learn to resolve differences in healthy and productive ways. The means of death and destruction are becoming further and further removed from face to face socially experienced incidents into push button or pull trigger devastations capable of killing tens and tens of thousands. This happened at Columbine and it very recently happened at the Utoeya island youth camp in Norway, where 85 people were killed and over 200 wounded because the shooter believed they were Marxist traitors. A peaceable, logic based reasoning of expectations and desires will always outweigh armed aggression in it’s effectiveness and sustainability. May you always find peace and good fortune in all that you desire and do. Works Cited List http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/12statab/vitstat.pdf) Jacobs, Nicky, Jaffe Russell, Investigating the Efficacy of CoMeT, a New Mediation Model for High-Conflict Separating Parents. American Journal of Family Therapy; Jan/Feb2010, Vol. 38 Issue 1, p16-31, 16p, 2 Charts NAICS/Industry Codes541990 Kressel, Kenneth, Lurching Toward Theory: The Case of Case Study Research in Conflict Pragmatic Case Studies in Psychotherapy, Volume 5, Module 3, Article 3, pp. 23-37, 09-12-09 Mediation Patterson, Kerry, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Swtizler, Crucial Conversations. Sellman, Edward “Peer mediation services for conflict resolution in schools: what transformations in activity characterise successful implementation?” British Educational Research Journal Vol. 37, No. 1, February 2011, pp. 45–60 Stepp, Stephanie D, PhD; Dustin A Pardini, PhD; Rolf Loeber, PhD; Nancy A Morris, PhD, The relation between adolescent social competence and young adult delinquency and educational attainment among at-risk youth: The mediating role of peer delinquency. The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, Vol 56, No 8, August 2011 Trip, Simona ,James McMahon, Carmen Bora, Floare Chipea The efficiency of a rational emotive and behavioral education program in diminishing dysfunctional thinking, behaviors and emotions in children, Journal of Cognitive and Behavioral Psychotherapies, Vol. 10, No. 2, September 2010, 173-186. Tzuriel, David and Shamir, Adina “The effects of Peer Mediation with Young Children (PMYC) on children’s cognitive modifiability” British Journal of Educational Psychology (2007), 77, 143–165

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

I love the Feelings of peace and love that are palpable in the ceremonies of the Holy Temple of the LORD.">

Monday, July 23, 2012

Progression Towards Perfection

I have been considering the nature of FAITH and I have struggled to encompass it in its entirety, but lacking a perfect understanding I will as yet make the attempt to describe and expound upon it's veracity and import. Firstly Faith is not Hope or curiosity it IS and because Faith is a past, present, and future, we will start with what is perhaps a simpler concept in that, of the NOW. Right now I have goals and desires and if I want them to become and to find fulfillment then I act, this action towards progress is the Faith. Faith states that I am here and now, but I will be there and then, so in order to be where I choose to be then I must make the appropriate and necessary steps of both thought and action, which, though facing opposing forces, will culminate into the fulfillment of my designs. Faith is a knowledge of what can be, but as of yet is not, but through clear and precise planning and execution in truth will be, and then it will become a was, for it is accomplished.

Let us now use the Ultimate example in that of the Atonement. In the beginning was God, and with God were the intelligences who had as yet not become and plans were made so that they could expand and grow into the potential that Gods embodied. Now the Father of our Spirits has the patience and the understanding to accomplish his designs and in order to make it a perfect and all encompassing progression a few things needed to be outlined with boundaries set. First we were given TIME, second we were bequeathed Agency and third we were provided an ATONEMENT. Now in order to access this redemption we had had to have a new start, and an end, and a new beginning. We were born into this world with a clean slate, as free agents. Due to the nature of humanity we err and in our imperfect state we procreate, and in doing so, often we mis-teach one another what life is and what is truly of importance and worth. Since all are NOT created equal (in size, looks, or ability) and do not all share the same parenting and socioeconomic standing and also because we learn through trial and error, an Atonement was requisite to the fulfilling of the plan, the plan for progressing towards perfection.

This Savior was also subjected to the same vicissitudes with which life is liberal unto all. The acceptance of the call to be Christ was also an intrinsic part, for had Jesus not chosen of himself to subject himself unto the Father, than no amount of planning could have fulfilled the requested Sacrifice and subsequent Atonement. Now this Atonement was from the beginning and was accomplished in the life of Jesus The Christ, some 2,000 years ago, but it is yet to be completed. Here in lies the need for Faithfulness and Perseverance, enduring to the end. Faith was in the beginning, Faith was with Christ in the life, death, and resurrection. This is Faith in the Atoning forgiveness of my sins being made freely available to me, if I but CHOOSE to access it's power, and it is this Faith that will see me to the end... and beyond. It is in my Faith that I am bound up to righteousness and therefore to the receiving of all that the father hath. But in order for me to have this faith I must first be taught and have a knowledge of things as they were, as they now are, and also how they will become, continuing Eternally through the sequence of events that once were, are, and as yet will be. In other words Faith is truth understood and adhered to. With Faith one can become unlimited and unbound. Sin or self deception blind and bind one down to the depths of despair, and fear prevents progression or fulfillment.

Therefore our Faith is based wholly and solely in the Fathers choice of our Savior and redeemer Jesus the Christ. He that was Faithful who did fulfill ALL righteousness and did gain all that our Father hath. For it is by Grace that we are Saved and not by any capacity of our own, but it is also in our Faith that we perform the works of righteous obedience that our Lord has made requisite unto us. As an example all must choose baptism by emersion to symbolize the Death of our sinful selves the cleansing and rebirth as a disciple and child of God. This action of choice is "Faith made real" for we did not enter the waters but for the Promise of our Savior, that He would remember our sins no more, and as we emerge clean and pure being washed in His Blood, our sins covered up in His righteousness, to be presented to the Father, as one desiring Harmony and Love, for Eternity upon Eternity. Thereby becoming whole, without spot, Perfect. By the Faith that we put in our Savior, Who was Faithful unto His Father, Who is in like manner Faithful in fulfilling ALL of His promises to all who have ever lived or will yet be born into this world of sorrows and sin, we shall rise again in a perfected form to faithfully Live throughout Eternity.

Faith therefore IS and will always be because there is no final end, Eternity stretches on before us, always beckoning we continue into the expanses of the Universe. To say there is no end is a misnomer for there are many things accomplished and many things fulfilled but there is no end to the Works and creations of Gods, and there is no beginning to them either. There is merely a sequence of events proceeded by Faith and action. which have all become our history and record of Truth. Faith is knowing that though it is not now, it will be then, and what once was, can and shall remain, though it disappear from view yet it exists. Faith is Love fulfilled, Faith is beauty, it is Purposeful, and whole, Faith is order, therefore Faith IS!

Thursday, April 28, 2011


The hierarchy of decision making.

God is obviously at the top of the list for perspective, understanding and omniscience.
Ones Mind, One's own intelligence and ability to weigh the pro's and con's is second on the scales (allowing for the fact that One seldom has all the pertinent information to make a correct decision every time One must still make an attempt). The Heart, or the things One is passionate about follows the brains ability to try and see all sides. One may decide jumping out of a plane is never a good idea because of all the inherent risks yet a passion for adventure and the high of adrenaline may override good sense. One's Emotions will follow, here is the danger of emotional decision making, it is REACTIONARY, it seeks to justify and 'make' good a scenario we do not want and most times end up regretting.
One's Actions follow a strange pattern for making a decision for us. If you physically do something without considering the out come of the action, it would still result in the consequences.
In summation, results will always happen even if one tries to refuse to decide they have still made a choice, (doing nothing is still doing something) time stops for no man and the actions and decisions of others will still have cause and effect in ones life.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

True Love

Our Heavenly Father has a perfect love for all his children. He loves us so perfectly that even when we reject him or actively seek to ruin our lives, he does not seek to control or force us to his view or will. In like manner we would do well to learn from this example of true or pure love. When those whom we love make a choice to effect their life or even ours, we really have no ability to compel another through our will power. Even if we could they are not choosing it and therefore the result is negated by the non investment of the doer. I will liken this to marriage as well as parenting. I want to be chosen as much as I want to choose the woman that I marry and spend Eternity with.

My children are beautiful and wonderful and that is because they are unique individuals and I will not destroy that amazing and wonderful character by seeking to coerce or force them into an ideal that they do not choose for themselves. My love that I give to you, is to hold on with all my heart and mind, not my hands and opinions.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Love and Let Live

I was once given an analogy of how a Man should be a garden fence and how a woman is a Garden and if he will protect her from the outside world she will thrive and grow bearing wonderful and delicious fruit, but if he is a fence to restrict and keep her in she will be incapable of bearing all her potential fruit and may even turn it bitter.

I am a loving romantic who has had to learn to not stifle or smother those whom I love. The romantic in me feels a strong need to give assurances of my love and devotion. Most of what makes up the relationship is unglamorous, uninteresting and sometimes just routine. But it is still a beautiful and empowering experience, because it is consistent and safe, because it is real.

Choices and commitments are never easy to make, it seems as tho we are always either compromising or left incomplete. Some times we need to let go of things we want and may feel we need in order to have what we most desire, trading a safer better for a less steady best. Sometimes, even most of the time, we would rather go without and wonder rather than commit and possibly regret.
Here is where we Love and Let Live.
We with no strings attached give to an other and receive in kind. We allow them to leave or stay as they choose we champion their happiness both with and even without us, we Love and Let Live. It is what a parent does, it is what God our Heavenly Father does and it is what we too must do. The only person who can keep a commitment is the one who makes it.
I am responsible for my involvement, you are responsible for yours. God is the best example of this, he invites he blesses and he loves, he never forces or demands, but he does allow the consequences to follow our freedom of choice and tho I may want to be more to you that is not mine to choose, rather it is my invitation to extend.

Truly there will never be a convenient time nor a perfect timing but there can be great interactions and relationship building experiences under the less than perfect circumstances, whilst we are struggling to makes sense and adjustments for it to work. Yes it a good thing to make adjustments, because we are looking to get married. Therefore we are bringing only a part and receiving the other part and rarely will this happen without compromise's and change. One must stay true to their desires and inmost selves, and yet it is not possible to put 2 individuals together without one or both making concessions. So for the whole to become complete the parts must be willing to fit. I rank Commitment, Integrity, Service and Support as the most important character traits one can have, I can work with most everything else, if those are firmly in place.

I loved her for her purity
I loved her for her mind
I loved her for her honesty
I love her because she's kind
I love her need for planning
I love her playful ways
I love her way of giving
I tell her every day
I love all of her I am seeing
I love her thru and thru
I love our close way of being
Yes Darling,
I love you for being you!

Faith and hope in the future must be founded on facts and fruits, otherwise we are foolishly building on fiction and fantasy.
I can give no more than all of me and will accept no less than a satisfied and committed you. The Win, Win, Win. Where I Win, You Win, and We Win together!
Failure is not an option and giving up is foolishness, but choosing is wisdom and whatever the choice is, it brings ownership and responsibility. I chose this for me and I choose to work for the future which is hopefully a future with you.