What This Blog is About

A long time mentor and friend, Cicely Berry, often says: "all we do comes from our need to survive".

Cis is the Voice Director of The Royal Shakespeare Company. Her profound work and deep appreciation of the human spirit has affected diverse communities all over the world.

Will take you to my current work.

This blog is dedicated to the belief that the overall health of a community or organization is a clear reflection of their ability to communicate.

"Cada cabeza es un mundo" - Cuban proverb

"Every head is a world"

Thursday, June 16, 2011

A wise person taught me years ago, that technology is meant to carry out our intentions. On a simple level, if I want to call a colleague, it is not my intention to call her office, her home, or her temporary location. It is my intention to call her. So, I say "call Helen", and technology simplifies the search and calls Helen, wherever she is.

On a more fundamental level -- technology is always connected to our intentions. That is both a moral and practical foundation.

Our humanity is always at play. In a world that truly appreciates diversity -- we should never inhibit the personal and professional development of anyone. That is a fundamental of a truly inclusive organization, community, or group of communities.

Here's a site that I have just learned about. There is an interesting correlation to education and the issue of community-based technology. We need to look at "communities of need" and not simply communities of greed. I know that sounds harsh. But when technology is only developed from a profit point of view, our humanity may be at question.

Not trying to sound convoluted (though that is a something I find hard to avoid sometimes. :)Technology, and our intentions with the development and use of technology, strikes at our basic humanity. Always.

It is our responsibility to be active participants and not simply leave technology to the experts.

Sal Rasa

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Really smart

"The invention of the remote control changed the timing of the world"- Comedian, writer, director - Sid Caesar

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Brain Research Supports Long-Term Teachings of Cis Berry

I know that Cis will be modest about this. But this news from MIT, is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the deep research and new understanding regarding how our brain actually works.

What I am learning (and getting advice on), is that everything Cis has written about language, nuance and loss of nuance, literal imposition vs. inner voice and articulation etc., is supported by what scientists are discovering. Take a look at this brief article.

http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2011/brain-language-0301.html -- MIT Newsletter

Now, a study from MIT neuroscientists shows that in individuals born blind, parts of the visual cortex are recruited for language processing. The finding suggests that the visual cortex can dramatically change its function — from visual processing to language — and it also appears to overturn the idea that language processing can only occur in highly specialized brain regions that are genetically programmed for language tasks.

“Your brain is not a prepackaged kind of thing. It doesn’t develop along a fixed trajectory, rather, it’s a self-building toolkit. The building process is profoundly influenced by the experiences you have during your development,” says Marina Bedny, an MIT postdoctoral associate in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences and lead author of the study, which appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences the week of Feb. 28.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A Thought About the Irag War and Gratitude to Those Who Served

Today, as we hear about American troops leaving Iraq, it's a time to deeply thank those who served. It is also, a time to reflect on the morality and humanity of our actions as a nation. Putting aside, incidental political bias and really looking at what we are doing.

Religions have always played their part in wars. I found the following statement to the Bush Administration to be a remarkably insightful plea from the oldest religious order of monks and nuns in the Catholic church. - Sal Rasa

This is the official position of Sr. Joan Chittister's religious order on the war in Iraq:

The following STATEMENT FROM BENEDICTINE MEN AND WOMEN arose from the meeting of Benedictine Presidents of Women's Federations and Men's Congregations of the United States held on October 12, 2002.

We Benedictine men and women, members of the oldest religious order in the Roman Catholic Church, are alarmed by President Bush’s and the US government’s steady movement toward an unprecedented pre-emptive attack against the people of Iraq. Born in late antiquity when marauding armies made all civilization vulnerable to violence, Benedictines adopted as their motto the Latin word Pax (Peace), and the central teaching in our 1500 year-old Rule of Benedict is that everyone, including every stranger, is to be welcomed as a blessing and treated as Christ. From that stance of reverence for the other, we state our opposition to a military attack on Iraq for the following reasons:

· A military attack against a densely populated country, already decimated by war and economic sanctions, will put millions of vulnerable civilians at risk of death and disease;

· The threatened military attack would follow over a decade of repressive sanctions that have already killed millions of innocent Iraqis, many of them children, who die of malnutrition, contaminated water, and a shortage of medication for treatable diseases;

· A military attack will not decrease but increase the likelihood of terrorist attacks against the US and any allies who join us, both by giving immediate incentive to existing terrorist cells and by drawing more resentful and desperate young people of Islamic nations towards terrorist ideology;

· A military attack now will further divert attention and resources from solving our domestic economic problems, which threaten millions of American families and individuals with the terror of hunger, homelessness, and unemployment;

· A military attack would needlessly put at risk the young men and women in the US military who would fight this war;

In saying this, we also recognize that Saddam Hussein’s threats must be taken seriously. We realize that he did use chemical weapons against his own people in the 1980’s, when he was allied with the US. We believe that United Nations diplomacy must be used to resolve this ongoing problem; threats to attack serve only to destabilize the situation and make more likely the use of any weapons Iraq may have.

One of the main reasons given by the administration for going to war is that, as Americans, we must refuse to live in fear. As people of faith, we know that fear is a spiritual problem. Fear can only be overcome by confronting fear itself, not by eradicating every new object of fear. The answer to fear is not war but a deep and living faith.

Some of us Benedictines oppose all war as immoral, but all of us oppose this particular war as immoral. We will each do what we can to prevent it. As we gather each day for prayer in our monasteries, we pledge to join together in praying that peace will prevail.


For additional information contact:

Sister Mary Lou Kownacki, O.S.B.
Mount Saint Benedict Monastery
6101 East Lake Road
Erie, PA 16511


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Let's listen to our heritage

"He has endeavoured to prevent the Population of these States; for that Purpose obstructing the
Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their Migrations hither, and raising the Conditions of new
Appropriations of Lands".

- The Declaration of Independence, referring to the King of Great Britain.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Looking back at Katrina seems like looking forward

will take you to the original article and slide show.

Hurricane Katrina struck the New Orleans area early morning August 29, 2005. The storm surge breached the city's levees at multiple points, leaving 80 percent of the city submerged, tens of thousands of victims clinging to rooftops, and hundreds of thousands scattered to shelters around the country....

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Do we really understand politics?

"Establishing lasting peace is the work of education; all politics can do is keep us out of war." Maria Montessori