I love and highly recommend Richard Rohr and his work at the Center for Action and Contemplation (https://cac.org/). He lives and talks polarities and is a frequent visitor to my gratitude journal. In a recent post, he talked about the polarity of Action AND Contemplation — and about “and”!:

“The most important word in our Center’s name is not Action nor is it Contemplation; it’s the word ”and.“ … “We need both compassionate action  and  contemplative practice for the spiritual journey. Without action, our spirituality becomes lifeless and bears no authentic fruit. Without contemplation, all our doing comes from ego, even if it looks selfless, and it can cause more harm than good. External behavior must be connected to and supported by spiritual guidance. It doesn’t matter which comes first; action may lead you to contemplation, and contemplation may lead you to action. But finally, they need and feed each other as components of a healthy dynamic relationship with Reality.”

When I reflect on Action AND Contemplation, it mirrors the polarity of Doing AND Being. Here’s the interior portion of a Polarity Map® created that uses Action/Doing as one pole of the polarity AND Contemplation/Being as the other:

A key mission of Polarity Partnerships and the Institute for Polarities of Democracy is to spread the value of “and” thinking in the world and respectively, to improve the quality of life and create healthy, sustainable, and just communities.

I confess to feeling less optimistic in the wake of escalating tensions as I prepare for travel to the Middle East where I will represent SixSEED Partners at a in healthcare conference. On January 1st, I posted about “2020 Optimism” and last year about “How the U.S. Army is Looking at Avoiding War” (through awareness of overusing “Or” thinking). But I can thank Richard Rohr for helping me “keep the faith” for “and”.

If you’d like to take a short 8-question Polarity Assessment to self-assess how well you’re currently leveraging Action/Doing AND Contemplation/Being, go to the link below. And, feel free to reach out if you have any questions about your results and/or how to assess other polarities on your team or in your organization: