between here and there


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Ideal Reality

 

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to Institute….

to institute a new course in American literature. 3. to set in operation: to institute a lawsuit. 4. to bring into use or practice:.

a society or organization having a particular object or common factor, especially a scientific, educational, or social one.
“the Institute for Advanced Studies”
2.
archaic
a commentary, treatise, or summary of principles, especially concerning law.
verb
1.
set in motion or establish (something, especially a program, system, or inquiry).
“the Illinois Department of Conservation instituted a hunt to remove deer”
synonyms: initiate, set in motion, get underway, get off the ground, get going, start, commence, begin, launch;

Institutions of the industrial era are crumbling but our imaginations are as rich as ever. We see the changes everywhere as the new paradigm of impermanence gains presence and practice. Life is fleeting, moving, passing by, here and there and then gone. The Crumbling we are witnessing suggests that “the institution” is most defined by physical parameters . But it is clear from the definition of “institute” shown above that “to institute” is more about an idea than physical boundaries or constraints, and institution is more about the establishment of an idea or treatise than any set of built and physical conditions .

Our preconceptions lay within the parameters of commerce and industry when we imagine institution as something physical, rather than something that is real as an idea , while ephemeral in the physical world.

Such is the vision that launched Artemis Institute, which codifies an idea, an idea specifically bound to the relationship we experience and create between nature and culture.

From the idea to the reality, we gather together the institution into our imagination, blending the idea into a world view, expanding into a new sense of the world . All the while engaged in the idea, inhabiting a fleeting sense of place among meadows, a mountaintop , a cafe or sidewalk. All parts being a part of the community of life. Artemis Institute is simply an idea that is alive because people believe in it.

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Mission . Practice. Journey.

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On October 26 I wrote a post called “Beginning Practice” as a follow up to a small piece I wrote “Practicing” on September 26. Now comes the journey.

As I have been traveling to speak to students at universities these past few weeks I have been asking them a question Artemis Institute has been focused on since it’s first program in 1997. I ask them if they believe they have a specific journey in life. Almost all say “yes.” But the next question, ” do you know what that journey is?” Usually follows with their response of “no.” The “no” is the challenge for our future.

There is a big change of outlook occurring with this new generation of people who are of college age. No longer do they believe a degree at a university provides an unquestionable best trajectory for their lives, and certainly not a guarantee for happiness. Truths cannot be guaranteed by those guarding antiquated cultural models. The primary change I see ( as is evident by theses covers of current magazines) is that happiness and job is important, place is important to this generation. And journey is ultimately important. The journey is not just about the self, the journey for these folks includes interaction with community and environment. They want to make change happen. Change requires a clear mission, a practice for that mission, and commitment to take the journey.

The journey is the exploration of who and how we are in the world . There is no straight-line to the end game of success. That idealized trajectory is one of the biggest myths we have told ourselves since the Enlightenment. Interaction, cooperation, multiple considerations, multiple answers, and inclusion all lead us to a new form for being in the world beyond the myth.

Say “yes .” Take the journey.