Isn’t it funny how at times we feel that we have transcended the consciousness of the status quo…that consciousness being one of hierarchy and compartmentalization. We erroneously feel that we have stopped looking at people in terms of their socio-economic status and the corresponding box they fit into, and actually believe that we are void of judgment, criticism and condemnation. Well go head and laugh at me, if you like, because I thought that I had arrived and was really convinced that I was accepting of others with no regard for their corporate or academic affiliation. Professor Jonathan Feng unknowingly made me aware of my inaccurate self-identity, and thankfully caused me to take a look inside.
I first learned of Professor Feng through a lecture series at the University Of California Irvine (UCI) campus entitled ‘What Matters To Me And Why’. Professor Feng is a member of the UCI Advisory Council on Campus, Climate & Inclusion and serves on the Diversity, Inclusion and Programming Work Group. He, along with a colleague, initiated the series and I was intrigued by their concept of bringing members of the campus community together through an experience sharing modality…which in turn would lead to the creating and sustaining of a sense of ‘Oneness’. I learned later that my new associate was a professor of Physics and Astronomy and that he specialized in research. That’s when I became aware of the need for a self-assessment because my initial reaction was how in the world is a scientist involved in matters of the heart.
Of course my desire to interview Professor Feng on the radio show was intensified because I realized that here was an opportunity for others to be made aware that the seeming paradox inherent in the merger of the spiritual and the scientific is unfounded. No matter what our vocation or endeavors may be, we should all strive for collaboration rather than separation because each of our personal contributions increases exponentially when our focus is on the big picture rather than our own wallet-sized photos.
This brings us back to my limited understanding and acceptance of my own shortcomings in regard to who and where I am in relation to others. I am grateful to have been reminded that I must, from time to time, reassess where I stand in regard to others and whether I am more concerned with putting people where I think they should be or with meeting them where they are. Thanks Professor Feng for reminding me to never think too highly of self, to stay green and growing, and to always be in touch with what matters most… right now.
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