A Bump in the Road

So, it’s been a while since I’ve posted to this blog. This is apparently “what happens” to most blogs. In my case, the flu, catching up again at work (once upright), and a bit of bump in my thesis are what happened.

It appears that my thesis advisor feels I’ve bitten off more than he feels it is appropriate to chew. The area of work and community is not his bailiwick, and I have not, yet, had a chance to talk with my second reader about this. But, I fear that the formalities of thesis writing may be on the primary advisor’s side. The topic will have to be cut, slashed, and burned. Much of the reading I have been doing—and intend to continue doing because it is pertinent to my interests—will likely not apply to the thesis in the end.

And, I have some significant amount of work to do before I can convince my advisor that I do not intend, nor do I feel it is within my responsibility or capability, to convince other people what “integrity” is or how to be a “moral person.” I only want to help people who are already aware of challenges to their integrity to address those challenges in a manner that allows them to retain that precious integrity. That’s enough of a task, I think.

The other day I was up early reading as usual, and I came across a fascinating quote in Good Work: When Excellence and Ethics Meet by Gardner, Csikszentmihalyi, and Damon:” “ . . . This is why we speak not of just “good work” but of “good work in difficult times. Not difficult, necessarily in terms of daily creature comforts, but difficult in terms of people’s ability to know the right thing to do and remain in their professions.”

David Whyte remains an important contributor to my thinking on this topic. He is a consulting corporate poet. The professor for one of my classes this quarter was consulting at Shell when Whyte came to speak there. It was interesting to hear about Whyte’s work from a perspective other than that of his work. It gave me hope.

I’m on the right track here, and Gardner, Csikszentmihalyi, and Damon have tread it before me, though perhaps they turned down a different path further on than I intend to take.

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