A GOOD EDUCATION Our parents insisted on it. We go into debt for it, but what is it? In this era of Common Core, student loans, and the shrinking job market, what constitutes a good education? Throw this question in the hat at your next Saturday Salon – strong opinions will abound and lead to discussions on everything from states’ rights to whether the purpose of a college education is to get a job and make a good salary, or become a well-rounded human being. Or both?
Be sure to invite guests from a variety of backgrounds – immigrant, young, old, blue and white collar, and entrepreneurs.
YOU ARE IN THE BOX…
Family, friends, coworkers and neighbors are about to arrive for your service. What would they say about you?
Pop this question into the hat and you’ll make some people uncomfortable. That’s OK.
Saturday Salons have their light moments, but we also host them to remind us to stop and think. Are we living our lives as we want to, or just letting them happen?
IS COLLEGE JUST A DOORWAY TO A JOB…or does knowledge have intrinsic value?
For those who view college as simply an entrance requirement to a job, the logic goes something like this:
“A girl’s gotta eat, and to eat I need a good job, and to get a good job, I need a college degree, or in most cases, degrees. I don’t have the luxury of taking Philosophy or Art classes for fun, or Physics just to see how the world works.”
Check out this school in HARLEM..they get it…
WHAT IS SACRED SPACE? The concept of sacred space can be approached from many perspectives, leads to deeper thinking and feeling, and so makes a great well from which to draw questions for the Saturday Salon hat:
Where is your sacred space? If you don’t have one, why?
Is sacred space a place God dwells and humans should not enter?
Is sacred space a place you go to reconnect with the infinite, to receive inspiration, to realign yourself with your spiritual values, or….?
When was the last time you spent more than 30 seconds in or near your sacred space?
What benefit does spirituality give our lives? Is it important to create sacred space in our lives?
What a great send-off for Letterman, and a delicious stab at what women “have” to do to appear acceptably attractive, particularly in show business.
How many women reading this own any Spanx? When was the last time you wore something to cinch you in? Job interview? Wedding? Prom? Going someplace you knew an Ex, or a Future Ex might be? How do you feel about it now?
Saturday Salons are great places to take a fresh look at what we accept as normal behaviors, or things we can not change, then realizing after the Talking Stick makes a few rounds, how laughable our cultural norms are!
SEATTLE’S SYMBOL OF STUBBORN RESISTANCE TO COMMERCIALISM IS SELLING OUT. Well, not so much selling out as being sold.
The original owner, Ms. Masefield, long since gone, turned down big bucks in order to stay in her little bungalow, defying the corporations who built towering concrete and steel structures intimidatingly up and around her home. She just sat there smiling until she died. Gotta love that woman!
A North Carolina investment company has it now, after a subsequent owner defaulted on the mortgage.
What do you think? Was Ms. Masefield admirable or just some crazy old lady?
Saturday Salons are a great place to take a topic in the news and use it as a catalyst for meaningful discussions about what is happening in your own life, like where the boundaries should be between independence and community, or corporations and individuals.
Here in Orange County, CA, people take turns complaining about the cookie-cutter, stucco suburbs, while still enjoying the numerous bike paths and parks that city planning created alongside those cookie-cutter, zero lot line houses.
Just taking this one topic-city planning – here are some questions to throw in the hat for your next Salon:
- Should everyone be required to pay for schools, even those who do not have children?
- Would you pay more in taxes if it meant campaign funding reform for local elections?
- How important are bike paths to you? Farmer’s markets? Parks? Day Care centers? Desalinization plants?
- The Arts – how important is it to have theater venues, concert arenas, and museums?
- What about other public services, like police or shelters for the homeless?
- Water use – should your city be able to tell you to tear out your thirsty, water-wasting lawn and put in a drought-resistant, natural landscape?
- What NIMBY projects would you fight? Prison? Landfill? Homeless shelter? What about noisy wind turbines or slightly unsightly solar panels? Where do you draw the line? What are you willing to give up for what benefits?
2016 IS STARTING TO SIMMER. Political parties are deciding what candidates and issues to throw in the pot. Is our Presidential Election all for show, or does your vote matter?
Throw Alexis de Tocqueville’s famous quote into the hat:
“In a democracy, people get the government they deserve.”
Do you agree?
He also said, “I know of no country in which there is so little independence of mind and real freedom of discussion as in America.”
Host a Saturday Salon…!
I agree with Tocqueville only in that we still have the freedom, we just don’t use it.
HOW DO YOU ADAPT TO CHANGE? Can we ever really insulate ourselves from unwanted changes in our lives or those we love? If you are a religious person, how does your faith help you cope?
A deeper question for the Saturday Salon hat may deal with how our belief systems affect our feelings and actions, or if they reach that far? When faced with tragedy, does your religion truly comfort you or cause you to take certain actions over others?
We know what our various religions say we SHOULD think, but do we? Buddhists are supposed to take comfort in knowing everything is temporary. Reality itself is a matter of perception, constantly changing and rearranging. If we truly accept that, change of any kind will not phase us, even death, pain or illness. Christians are supposed to take comfort in prayer, asking God to intervene on their behalf, or at the very least, they accept horrible events such as a child’s death, because things are supposed to be better in the next life – the balance sheet will be reconciled and all will be well.
What do you believe, and how deeply do you believe it? Do you believe strongly enough to truly be comforted during times of unwanted change?
DO YOU MAKE NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS? Set goals? Write mission statements? Create visualization boards? What works for you? I like the Steven Covey Roles & Goals time and resource management approach, but I’ve also cut pics from magazines and glued them onto poster board for inspiration. I think it reflects my dual nature: linear and logical mixed with messy creativity and a dash of Whatever!