This morning I was reading "A Short History of Tractors in Ukranian," a novel by Marina Lewycka, when Phil joined me. I giggled and read aloud to him:
But this is all in the past, Nadia. Why you have such bourgeois preoccupation with all personal history?
A few minutes later, Phil said, "When you're ready to take a break let's watch a few videos."
As he prepares to teach a course in conflict resolution, Phil is searching the web for interesting material to show in class.
The website we went to is Communication and Conflict where you will have the opportunity to view a multitude of videos on understanding conflict in communication. The purpose of these videos is to unveil a process by which the person who perceives a conflict is step-by-step led to understand it from the viewpoint of his/her own ultimate needs.
Seeing these videos while reading my book, living my life, with multiple daily opportunities to manage conflict and perhaps even understand my role in it, I found the interactions in these videos entertaining and affirming.
Conflict is socially constructed and it is driven by interpretations we choose to privilege. However, ultimately, to pursue our desire to liberate the self and experience peace and fulfillment, we must be responsible for our language use and what it accomplishes.
All this has me thinking...