Reposted from: http://rsfsocialfinance.org
From Intersection To Crossroads: An Invitation to Inquiry into Money and Spirit
March 16, 2009
By John Bloom
No productive inquiry begins without disclosing assumptions, even the assumptions behind the assumptions, for the sake of transparency. If you found this blog via the RSF website, you probably noticed three questions on the homepage: Can money nurture your spirit? Can money heal the planet? Are you inspired to learn more? These are not casual questions. They are meant to invite dialogue with us and across a growing community of investors, donors, and borrowers who know that change is needed in how we work with money and in the financial system. What the new ways will look like, how they will evolve is a matter of co-creating them with sensitivity to real social needs, spiritual and ecological integrity, and the full dimensions of interdependence in our economic life. Certainly, our work here at RSF Social Finance is directed toward evolving answers to these questions.
We would not ask the question about money nurturing your spirit if we didn’t have 25 years of experiencing that it can. But, as one who has led many conversations on money, this positive view is not commonplace at the outset, and changing that perception is not simple. Instead, the inner personal world of money is opaque, and attempts to explore it feel more like trespassing than discovery of what is already owned. So the question is a challenge to explore the intersection of money and spirit as it is situated in your life. How, for example, do your deepest values and beliefs currently play out in your financial practices? Withhold judgment. Instead consider each transaction a moment of intersection, a moment to engage in reflection and inquiry. When the inquiry surfaces insights, the intersection will likely become more of a crossroads connecting to your broader map of experience. I am not suggesting that this is easy, but it is a place to begin transforming how you connect your spirit with your financial practices. One of our assumptions is that systemic transformation begins with personal transformation. So sharing your experiences at this crossroad will further nurture your spirit and help others with whom you work, trade, invest, or give.