‘It is apparent to infinite players that wealth is not so much possessed as performed.’*
Everybody has something to bring. On the surface one person is trying to help another. Beneath the surface, both have something to contribute.
‘By reinforcing the separation of people from their problems, problem solving often functions as a way of maintaining the status quo rather than enabling fundamental change […] where problems often arise from unquestioned assumptions and deeply habitual ways of acting.’**
How often will helpers sit in a room figuring out how to help those who will receive their help but who are not invited into the space? We might argue that this is just too difficult to do, that we would never get anywhere, nothing would get done. But perhaps we’re missing a trick. Perhaps this is how it’s meant to be, we just try to short-circuit the human process of connecting people and problems. Perhaps, in the long run, this way of producing solutions would take less time than the all the false starts and reruns that we often see played out.
I am reminded of the learning of Vincent Donovan, trying to work with young people. It was one of his students who told him:
In working with young people do not try to call back to where they were and do not call them to where you are as beautiful a place as that may seem to you. You must have the courage to go with them to a place that neither you nor they have ever been before.”
Here are some encouraging words from J.K. Rowling which help us to see how imagination gets to play within such proximity:
“Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not, and therefore, the foundation of all invention and innovation. In its arguably most transformations and revelatory capacity, it is the power that enables us to empathise with humans whose experience we have never shared.”^