I'm new to these forums and always verbose, so I apologise if I'm breaking rules by including a link. Should it not work, I'd encourage people to Google "Charles Handy" and "The Age of Paradox" and "Cornish, Edward". Somewhere there should be a free version of the book review from "The Futurist" publication. The link is http://www.allbusiness.com/professional-scientific/scientific-research/455212-1.html
I include this to reference Charles Handy's publication and to offer a point myself. The review notes:
Handy concludes his book by arguing that three things will be necessary to make sense of our paradoxical world and to succeed in it: a sense of continuity, a sense of community, and a sense of direction.
Continuity means that we see our lives as continuing from the past into the future. We do not exist simply in the present, cut off from what has happened in the world before we appeared or what will happen after we are gone. He notes that the last few verses of the Book of Ruth consist of nothing but a series of "begats"--"Pharoz begat Hezron, and Hezron begat Ram, etc.," down to "and Jesse begat David." The point of the begats, Handy tells us, is that David, the great king of the Jews, would never have existed without all those people who came before him. Without our ancestors, however unimportant they may seem, we would not exist; without us, our descendants, literal or figurative, would not exist.
Recognizing our continuity with the past, Handy suggests, we see that we ourselves are links in a chain and that "it is up to us to keep things going because who knows which generation will be the one to make the big difference." The sense of continuity leads to "cathedral philosophy, the thinking behind the people who designed and built the great cathedrals, knowing that they would never live long enough to see them finished." The "cathedrals" we are working on today will not be of stone and glass, but will take equally long to build; we who start the buildings may not live to see their completion. "It is hard to believe that we will make the sacrifices involved unless we can believe in the long-term existence of our little local world and of the bigger global one."
The sense of connectedness, Handy's second requirement, is essential if we are to make sacrifices for other people. "Duty and conscience have no meaning if there is no sense of commitment to others, and of others to us," Handy says. "We were not meant to stand alone. We need to belong--to something or someone."
AS for me, my point is to say thanks. I'd like to thank everyone who takes the time to delve into themselves, to bravely and viscerally experience stuff, and to share. I'd like to thank everyone who has the traits of humility, inquisitiveness, integrity, and ideally optimism, and to encourage them to hang on. I'd like to thank people who care for others - family, friends, bloggers, strangers, and who consistently and deliberately extend themselves to offer support and to make a difference. And I'd like to pledge that (for 2010 and beyond) that I will do a better job of being more like you.
And last, I'd like to pray, that when and as I go through my ultimate own moment of surrender, and change phase from a rumpled physical state to a spiritual one, that in my new state, some of my unbound elemental energy can find and mingle with that of the people who have written and contributed here ... YES, ALL OF YOU ... and especially people like ElJay, Uplate, StrongGirl,Immy, and Joe G (whom I've got to note has written some wonderful poems - absolutely vital stuff). Each and all of you are making a difference and I'm comforted that there are people like you out there. Benevolent underdogs seeking to make a difference. Cathedral builders and poets, one and all. Cheers and keep as positive as you can. Sorry about the length.