I posted this a long while back with a focus on boundaries as an activist, and I included it in my book The Leader Within, but this is a fairly good general primer on boundaries for leadership. It's essential for anyone in a leadership position to understand the concept of boundaries and to work with their own issues around this; ultimately, I think that the only way we get healthier groups is if everyone involved in a group is working with their boundaries.
A lot of activism and leadership begins with changing your self and your own life so that you can begin to effect change in the world around you. Some of this kind of personal transformation work can be very difficult.
Lines drawn in the sand, or in my case on the road. There is a place on my drive to work where the road is wide enough for two lanes though it isn’t marked that way. At one point, there are yellow lines on the road to mark the beginning of a left turn lane. Even though there is nothing in the road to stop it, people change over to the right lane, then move back into the left lane to make their turn.
This always makes me chuckle.You can clearly see there is nothing in the road, if you just keep moving forward over the top of those yellow lines, you would be in the left turn lane.Yet daily, people follow the lines that push them into the right lane before they switch back to make their left turn.
I was going to write about something related but different in my next column. But I read Shauna Aura Knight’s excellent post about her stance on the Frosts this morning, and the controversy she has encountered has encouraged me to change focus. It seems to me that much of the criticism and condemnation boils down to, "She's not playing nice." Well, here's the problem with "niceness." I must tread carefully to protect privacy so much of my language is deliberately vague.
One of our tradition members – an initiate of an initiate – contacted my husband and priest. She said that her teenage daughter had told her that her husband had sexually abused her. The couple have been married for many years; the girl in question is the man’s daughter genetically. The mother was, quite understandably, in tears. She wanted to know what she should do.
How do we want to present ourselves to the world? How does the world at large view the Pagan community, and are we happy with the way people see us?
These questions have circulating for years, and often the answer is something like, “Why should we care what they think? All they’re going to do is judge us anyway - and they’ve already made up their minds.”
From a cursory scan of several Pagan blogs, it appears to me that lots of Pagans have been devoting their thinking to the notion of inclusivity.Who is welcome in whose circles?How Pagans can demonstrate their love for all humankind by rolling out the welcome mat to one and all?In principle I agree that our groups should be welcoming to all who are called to a Pagan path, although we all know that there are many Pagan paths and not every one is suitable for every seeker.