The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

Posts tagged “dialogue

Dialogue of Silence – Community Engagement Podcast (38)

Posted on August 27, 2013

Most people don’t listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.  Citizen engagement exercises often fail because people are just so impatient to talk and give an opinion.  But sometimes words diminish their true meaning.  The language of politics used to belong to the political elites, but they have squandered and hollowed out those terms.  The real language of democracy is the language of community, but for that to occur we have to listen and understand before speaking. Just click the audio button below to listen to the five-minute podcast.

“Humanizing Our Words” – Community Engagement Podcast (37)

Posted on August 26, 2013

We now move into the final week (five podcasts) on community engagement.  All of these talks have been progressive in nature – moving from the first stumbling attempts at getting our point across and then reaching that place where we can lay blinded opinions aside as we search for common ground.  The words we use are important, but if they remain ideological or overly partisan then our communities will suffer.  We all have to get beyond the words to working on solutions together. Just click the audio button below to listen to the five-minute podcast.

“From Interests to Interest” – Community Engagement Podcast (35)

Posted on August 22, 2013

To create meaningful dialogue, good citizens display empathy more than emphasis.  To understand and respect where the other person is coming from is one of the hallmarks of civil society – a trait made all to rare these days by a partisanship that’s gone mad.  We all have our points of view – interests – and we all need to present them.  But above all there is the need to get to the overriding interest of why were attend such gatherings in the first place.  Sometimes the best people in such situations are those with respectful characters, instead of those with smart minds that are nevertheless petty. Just click on the audio button below to listen to the five-minute podcast.

A Life More Important Than Words – Citizen Engagement Podcast (33)

Posted on August 20, 2013

The genius of democracy is not how right, or even how smart we are.  It is how open we are to find compromise that will permit us to move ahead as a citizenry.  Our present democratic state is mired in rigidity, in policies that won’t budge, and in characters than think having a strong opinion is the same as possessing strong truth.  No leader can deliver us from this and no government can legislate an open mind.  There’s work to do and humility is the one great essential if we are to succeed. Just click the audio button below to listen to the five-minute podcast.

Humanizing Our Words

Posted on June 22, 2012

A few days ago I was having coffee at one of my favourite places when in walked a Conservative MP from an era prior to the Harper times. He immediately sat down and began talking about how he was glad to be out of politics in Ottawa, given all that has transpired in the last few years. He then went on about being retired and brought up some of the challenges he is witnessing in our community. “When I was in the House, Glen, long before your time there, we’d have good friends in other parties and we’d head out for drinks or dinner, and always the subject came around to the legislation we were debating or voting on. And you know, we found…

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