Home Concepts Adult Development Essay XXI:  Generativity Three: Consecrating, Gathering, Preserving Values, Story-Telling

Essay XXI:  Generativity Three: Consecrating, Gathering, Preserving Values, Story-Telling

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One of our younger Sage leaders commented on this generative challenge for one organization in which he participates (Rotary). He framed this challenge as the opportunity for mutual respect across the ages:

Rotary is typically an organization for older people, and I have gotten comments about being young and having energy. I like to bring youthfulness to what we do and show older people that there are young people who respect them and learn from what they have to say because we feel they are a wealth of knowledge.

We see in this brief but wise observation that generative appreciation goes in both directions. We honor those who are older than we are (availing ourselves of Generative Two guidance) and those traditions and values that predate us (availing ourselves of Generative Three continuity). In return, we are respected and listened to by those we have appreciated and honored. Reciprocity is a good thing, a dynamic interplay across generations that becomes particularly important as we turn in the next series of essays to the challenges of civic engagement.

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References

Bateson. Gregory (1979) Mind and Nature: A Necessary Unity. New York: Dutton.

Bellah, Robert and others (1985) Habits of the Heart. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Bergquist, William (1993) The Postmodern Organization. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Lopez, Barry (1998) Crow and Weasel. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

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