Agree with me or not, all groups below had observable slowed expansion and contracting membership, 2005-2016.
The good news is the great good these orgs have done; and in many cases, still do.
Let’s agree the collapse of New Age and other categories of Progressive gorups, 2005-2016, had TWO causes.
One was the recession of 2008-2016. De-funding of the (holistic) arts was a major consequence.
The second cause I propose was lack of attention by organizers-leaders to healthy, local, face-to-face group process. This includes lack of investment in deepening face-to-face group connection; and, lack of investment in refreshing consensus of the org’s deepest, innermost values.
Q: What hard evidence exists for the theory nurturing and sustaining healthy group process as a limiting factor in organizational sustainability and growth?
A: Evidence is mostly observational, from participating, from volunteering, from being on a few Boards, and some conversations with Board members of groups I did not participate directly with.
Q: How much weight do you give each of these two factors?
A: Hard to say. 50-50? I’m less interested in doing research. I’m more interested in what we can learn from these observations, going forward.
A list of failed or severely declined Progressive orgs, as of April 2017:
– Occupy Wall Street, never progressed to a consensus on values nor a clear vision of a better future,
– GreenSpirit formally the Association for Creation Spirituality (Matthew Fox),
– Gaia Theology around new sustainable, non-fossil energy sources and technologies,
– Green intentional communities and ecovillages, post-carbon, sustainable, economically sustainable tribes Global Ecovillage Network (gen.ecovillage.org),
– Transition Towns in the USA, TTs in the UK and Europe seem to be growing,
– Food co-ops and food buying clubs,
– Whole-child education movement in the USA, Waldorf-method, Rudolf Steiner Schools, still thriving outside the USA,
– Humanistic Psychology 1.0 (Active Listening, Emotional Intelligence, USM Spiritual Psychology,
– Active Listening groups, Compassionate (nonviolent) Communication groups,
– Green Party in the USA and pretty much worldwide,
– Light and Sound groups, theologies of soul in the human experience, PACME, going Home to Soul and Above,
– Sufi Order in the West after 2000, Dances of Universal Peace,
– Ecumenical spirituality, various orgs, worldwide, peaked in the 1990s
– Touch for Health, Psych-K, other muscle testing methods
– Insight Training Seminars, the peak expression of LGATs,
– Est-Forum, see cult discussion in a later article,
– American and British Societies of Dowsers,
– Unity Churches on the West Coast, still thriving on East Coast I’m told
– Conventional Union organizing,
– Republican party since Goldwater and Democratic Party since Bill Clinton especially,
Am I leaving anyone out? Please add your nominations in the Comments below.
I honor and acknowledge all the good above groups have done. The errors–I’d like to learn from them.
Unless and until attention is paid to WHY groups-orgs above weren’t sustainable and long-lived, we have a classic situation:
The main thing which was learned was–not much was learned.
The repeating Groundhog Day Pattern comes from present generations replicating the same errors and shortcomings as generations before in the 1960s, 1970s-1980s.
Q: Do you mean to tell me, ALL the above groups basically have the same group process problem?
A: Yes. A pattern exists, very strongly. The pattern is: Too little attention paid by organizers to healthy, local, FUN, face-to-face interaction; and, too little investment into refreshing consensus on the org’s deepest, innermost values, reconnecting with Source, however the org defines this.
The pattern suggests to me Progressive orgs and churches can only grow to the limits of their healthy group process.
If other readers and writers find this pattern holds true, it means failure of Progressive groups and orgs is now highly predictable.
If you can describe this better than I, please do so in the comments and I will revise this article and credit you.
Q: What are the solutions?
A: Solutions start with education, taking off the rose colored glasses about 1960s Progressive history, learning from our errors.
Most articles in this series describe solutions and the education Progressives missed out on which can work now.
Three volumes of Group Process as an Art-form are already published, discussing known, tested solutions.
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Find author and Health Intuitive Bruce Dickson at HolisticBrainBalance.wordpress.com He writes on Best Practices in Energy Medicine (30 books) amazon.com/Bruce-Dickson
Another blog: blog.GoetheanScience.net