“Understanding shatters old knowledge to make room for the new that accords with reality.” Thich Nhat Hanh
When the mind and heart move together, they will transform a polarized experience of conflict into understanding, melting away the view that caused blinding fear and self protection. Suddenly, the formerly opposed see each other in one another’s reality. Compassion replaces tension and selfishness. This opens up the room for creativity, and the ability to see a new reality and possibilities for both sides - most often creating a better possible outcome than anyone could see before.
This happened on the range with cowboys and environmentalits but it wasn’t an easy task, and the battle continues today as individuals and families work to get their point of view realized, acknowledged, understood, and included.
The biggest problem usually lies in holding on to the need to define the specific outcome, instead of focusing on the long term vision and ideal. i.e. those blaming cows for the degradation of land wanted grazing cattle numbers cut by 50%, instead of what they want the land to look like in 10 years. This is a vast difference... What is the goal, as opposed to the tool?
Reality, in this quote, must be defined as reality is so far skewed from each paradigm. Also, reality can in land management situations be defined as a situation that more accurately responds to what the public thinks it wants, than what is best for the land. This is a major sticking point in making decisions with public land managers and grazing permittees and environmentalists. The outcomes for the local communities and the ranchers are dire, and sometimes tragic for all. The unintended consequences can be terrible.