jpmurad

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Leadership and the Threat of Malice

In Uncategorized on July 29, 2010 at 6:57 pm

I often consider writings – especially spiritual writings – in light of leadership.  And lately, I’ve been reflecting on the life and circumstances of a great Jewish leader.  He is often touted, in certain circles, as a pre-eminent model of leadership (and administration).  His name was Nehemiah and he lived in the B.C. time period.  Can you believe a culture/people group with that much longevity?

When Nehemiah had committed himself to a massive vision – re-founding the city of Jerusalem along with re-instituting the spiritual practices of the Jews at that time – it was then that opposition rose against him.  A man named Tobiah, with malicious intent, threatened Nehemiah by portraying his leadership as self-serving and power hungry.

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Starbuck

In Uncategorized on July 21, 2010 at 4:17 pm

Starbuck was no crusader after perils; in him courage was not a sentiment, but a thing simply useful to him and always at hand upon all mortally practical occasions.  ~Ishmael of Starbuck the first mate, Moby Dick

The boy from ‘Never Ending Story’ came to mind today.  Stealing away to a dark corner of the dingy school, Bastian seeks soul refuge from the very institution, which designed to educate, has nevertheless been ignoring.  So I, took a break from the last few weeks of activity.  Two weekend academies and 4:30am weekday shifts at the bucks has been cumulatively wearisome.

Moby Dick has been a pleasant application of my mental energy.  The Italian word for entertainment, as I was told by a friend, is Divertire – meaning diversion.  Attentiveness to the lines of Moby Dick is more of a concerted directive for me though.  How fascinating that I resist learning and enrichment!  I was interested to learn that Starbuck is the first mate on Captain Ahab’s ship, the Pequod.  The description and others like it has me referring to ‘cleaning the ship’ during my part time work as I continue on with the coaching.

Celebration

In Uncategorized on June 7, 2010 at 8:24 pm

I am sitting here with a glass of red wine (Argentine) thinking how blessed I am.  Some oil in my hair and propped up bare feet, listening to John Mayer.  I’m appreciating variety of music, color and food in my life.

The door is open on my patio, where the darkness covers over the other apartments, my garden (ok, so it is currently a plot of dirt), single moms, men ‘of the cloth’ and guys teaching the world that growing up is being child-like.

Light breaks and returns.  It’s all good.

Academy Announcement

In Uncategorized on April 8, 2010 at 8:36 am

The Art of Possibility

In Uncategorized on February 2, 2010 at 3:14 pm

At long last, I completed the Art of Possibility this afternoon.  I drank the book in over the last month and a half, reflecting on the stories and practices of the book.  I have a picture in my mind of ‘the time it should take to finish a book.’  This did not match.  Or maybe that picture is based on a measurement of my performance, rather than what was wanted and needed.

I had coffee (tea actually) with a long time friend last night at Coffee Bean in Irvine.  I drank African Sunrise from what appeared to be a glass, beer mug, though it was not frosted.  My friend aptly pointed out that I do not have the insight into my own story that I might think or wish I did.  (I have a tendency to take my own insights very seriously).  His comment stuck with me in that I often do not have the same visibility as others do into my actions.  Those that know me well can affirm that I have better visibility with others than I often do with myself.  Blind spots are just that.  I’ve got em.  And relationships are the best way to get visibility on them – no amount of compulsive studying or reflection can give the same feedback.

In the spirit of this book, I have enjoyed entering into new spacious conversations with others.  Offering them space to say ‘what is so’ for the relationship.  I’ve enjoyed the power to speak into a new context of relationship that involves partnership, rather than isolation and mutuality, rather than one-ups-manship.

I’m thankful for this read and anticipate to continue to enlist its practices as a vehicle that defies the world of measurement/comparison and launches US into a universe of possibilities.