Disappointment -- No soul? LO12105

W.M. Deijmann (winfried@universal.nl)
Tue, 21 Jan 1997 16:02:23 +0100

Replying to LO12082 --

This is a reply to entropy -> creativity -> Learning, to: English as a
super lingua.

Mr. de Lange wrote:
>Let me use the poem as a metaphor. It is much easier to translate a piece
>of prose than a poem. Consider the rhyme, rithm, etc as the soul of the
>poem. In the translation of a poem its soul usually gets lost. For
>example, there is a beautiful poem Winternag (winter night) by E Marais
>which reflect the desolated soul of the Boere after the Second Anglo-Boer
>war. It is impossible to translate this poem in English. But one reading
>of its few lines in Afrikaans (the Boer's language) will open the eyes
>THROUGH THE RHYME AND RYTHM to the Boer's soul and the immense forces
>eminating there from, forces which eventually took the wrong course and
>resulted in apartheid.

Can you give us the poem anyway At!?

The South African-language is familiar to Dutch so that's why it interests
me, and because one can feel the rhythm and recognmize the rhyme without
understanding the language. It might be interesting just to recitated the
lines and enjoy the magic of the sound of these words, the rhythm and the
rhyme without understanding them. It's fascinating to reproduce sounds
that doesn't have a meaning to you but apperently does have to others.
At's posting reminded me of something from my time in college. During my
study I once recitated 12 verses of the Devina Comedia from Dante in
Italian for my fellow-students. I was complety un-familiar with the
Italian language, but Italian songs always fascinated me because of their
compassion and I saw it as a challenge of which my friends were shure that
I wouldn't manage to do......... Starting to learn the verses was a
terrible experience. I almost could'nt learn the verses 'by heart' because
I didn't understand what I was saying. Apperently I was only able to learn
words that had a meaning to me and my brain was constantly scanning for
concepts that would match with the words i pronounced. After some weeks of
realy, realy hard trying it became easier and easier to repeat the verses
by heart. But something inside me had to get untight, had to losen up.
First after I gave up my inner resistance I could open myself to the
beauty that lays hidden behind the meaning of words. And then the inner
nature of Italian started to live for me. It was as if _the words
themselves_ began te tell _me_ their meaning and compassion. First after I
was capable of recitating all 12 verses without mistakes I allowed myself
to compair the text with the German version and the almost apocalyptic
meaning of the words. Through this experience it became evident to me that
there's a difference between listening and listening. Since that time I
understand the deeper meaning of "Learning by Heart". It's meant
litteraly!. Learning by heart means that there must be moments where you
exclude the cognitive understanding and create open inner space where
words are able to express their inner nature out of them selves. A
side-effect was that since then it is much easier for me to empathise with
others without losing my own point of view. Getting familiair with
LO-concepts is like learning a new language, and a new vocabulary, and not
just cooking a new dish with old concepts. We have to learn people to
listen different. If you metaphoricaly imagine LO concepts and disciplines
as a new language, there is an absolute danger that this new language wil
be mis-interpreted because people wil stick there "old" existing concepts,
perceptions, etc. upon the words they hear (or read). LO-concepts will
only be here to stay if we are able to create these moments of creative
contemplation in ourselves,with our clients and our clients with their
workers with their co-workers, etc. etc. The disappointment in the
concepts of LO wil certainly come if we are not able to give it not only
body but also Soul; It will slowly waste away. Talking about it, (like on
this list) will not be enough IMO? How can we doe about it? Does this make
sense to any of you outthere, or is this Babylonian Mumbo-Jumbo?

Reading my own lines again make them sound like a kind of lecture,
ofcourse they are only meant as my personal vision on LO-work and are open
for comments and other idea's.

Thanks for listening,


Winfried M. Deijmann
Deijmann & Partners
Artists and Consultants for Organizational Learning
Het Zwanevlot 37
NL 7206 CB Zutphen
Netherlands Email: Winfried@universal.nl
tel.: +31 (0)575-522076 fax.: +31 (0)575-527310
"An educated mind is useless without a focussed will and dangerous without
a loving heart" (unknown source)


winfried@universal.nl (W.M. Deijmann)

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>