Polarity Thinking came alive in this morning's Open Space session as participants wrestled with how they might integrate the concepts into their own lives and practices.
Learnings that emerged from the circle:
How does everything change when we ask "x or y?" and hold that the answer can be yes - to both!
If you remove one pole, you've lost the whole. Look for the essential tensions. Tensions that come up often for people - Seriousness vs Play, Core vs. Periphery.
Polarity Thinking might mean that we need to become advocates for our own enemy. When we can advocate the stance we've been opposing, we'll really be able to leverage the resources in our communities.
Troublemaking is in the eye of the beholder. Troublemakers may be passionate souls who are holding another pole.
The phenomenon of interdependent pairs is in nature like gravity. It's not something anyone owns - it's a phenomenon. You have already been thinking this way your whole life. Polarity Thinking is just a way to get a handle on it.
Energy shows up in a system as either excitement or conflict. The energy in inherently neutral and can pull the system into either a vicious or virtuous spiral. One thing that can make it turn vicious is either/or thinking, where we think that one pole has to "win". If the essential issue is around a polarity, struggling in an either/or manner over a pole sets the system up for failure.
If you're holding the other polarity, you hold a tremendous resource. Engage the minority pole not because it's politically correct, but because it's essential.
Where there is fuzziness or darker places, there's leverage. If we can see the fuzziness as a polarity, the question becomes "How can we leverage both?"