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Sustainable community #05

Waiting (Hsu)

Metaphors: Awaiting / Attending / Getting wet / Nourishment


Social A sustainable community can only derive the strength to confront crises by being able to wait, however long is necessary for opportunities to emerge, rather than being panicked into action by immediate dangers.

Sub-conditions:

1. Before the sensed crisis takes form, the sustainable community should continue as long as possible to engage in the longterm processes by which its strength is renewed. (Resulting in: Basic need).

2. As the crisis takes form, disagreements may emerge and escalate dangerously if the sustainable community is unable to maintain its tranquillity. (Resulting in: Accomplishment).

3. Premature response to the crisis leaves the sustainable community waiting in an exposed and vulnerable position which calls for serious reassessment. (Resulting in: Limitation).

4. In the midst of danger any action may aggravate the situation; the composure of the sustainable community is the only guarantee of survival as events take their course. (Resulting in: Resolution).

5. Despite the crisis there are moments of calm which the sustainable community should use to fortify itself for renewed struggle. (Resulting in: Peace).

6. When the crisis strikes, the sustainable community must yield to the inevitable whilst being ready to respond to the potential of unforeseen developments. (Resulting in: Subtle restraint).

Transformation sequence Initiatives awaiting support engender conflict over the allocation of available resources. (Resulting in: Conflict).


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Earlier version in 2nd edition of Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential (1986).

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