Some of us aren't sure of what our vision is yet. Have confidence in yourself and your abilities to get there and say I have the means. Build self confidence. Take time to find your vision.

--Knodal Saying

T.H. White

The Once and Future King, 1939

"The best thing for being sad," replied Merlyn, beginning to puff and blow, "is to learn some-thing." That is the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then—to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Look at what a lot of things there are to learn—pure science, the only purity there is. You can learn astronomy in a lifetime, natural history in three, literature in six. And then, after you have exhausted a milliard lifetimes in biology and medicine and theocriticism and geography and history and economics—why, you can start to make a cartwheel out of the appropriate wood, or spend fifty years learning to begin to learn to beat your adversary at fencing. After that you can start again on mathematics, until it is time to learn to plough.
Invisible College

Leonard J. Duhl,

General Systems Theory and Psychiatry, 1969, pp. 345, 346

But beyond formal organizational structures there are "invisible colleges"—the loose aggregates of individuals scattered throughout the nation and the world who periodically communicate with one another. They are sociologists, architects, lawyers, doctors, teachers, and others whose avocation is "change" and how it might be effected. All are intimately involved in reality—some participate quite actively in the affairs of an organization; others have removed themselves from decision-making by becoming advisers, consultants, or assistants.

Their communications are via the telephone, the Xerox machine, and the jet. They meet, exchange information, ideas, theories, and concepts. Tied neither to time, place, nor position, they operate on many different levels at the same time. They are a link between industry and government, between the public and private sectors, between the federal, state, and city governments, between the governments and neighbor-hoods, between the money receivers, between the theorists and activists. Their value lies both in their access to information from many sources and their rapid dissemination and utilization of that data. Differing combinations of these agents of change may assemble for many purposes: to explore the possibilities of and to launch a New Town, to discuss a Watts and its implications for planning, or even to weigh the impact of systems technology upon forecasting. The long-range planner must connect informally with one or another level of these "invisible colleges" for the information developed and passed on in them is not of the typical census type, but part and parcel of the day-by-day reality of social systems and the people functioning within them.

These planners are not dreamers. They have cultivated what Sir Geoffrey Vickers has called "the art of judgment"—the process of making decisions in the present that dramatically affect the future. They are experts in combining and reforming data and information, in redefining the problem, and, most importantly, in causing others to feel they must do likewise. They achieve this by presenting additional information relative to the issues at hand in a way that convinces others. They are experienced in working imaginatively with performance standards that are not potentially multi-applicable. They have the ability to "feel" data. They have an appreciation of the implications of decisions and how they might affect a staff as well as tangential activities.


copyright 1997, MG Taylor Corporation (except where noted)
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