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What do we truly want?

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  • Andrius Kulikauskas
    I share my goals for the future. I encourage us all to share ours likewise. I am very happy for the dedication that we are sharing at the many working groups
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 20, 2008
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      I share my goals for the future. I encourage us all to share ours likewise.

      I am very happy for the dedication that we are sharing at the many working
      groups of our Minciu Sodas laboratory http://www.ms.lt/news.php for
      serving and organizing independent thinkers. Congratulations to Marcin
      Jakubowski and all at Factor E Farm http://openfarmtech.org/weblog/ for
      your open source tractor LifeTrac, your solar turbine, your exemplary blog
      and videos. Congratulations to Samwel Kongere for arriving in Italy from
      Kenya and building bridges across the deep divides that isolate us.
      http://www.ms.lt/news.php?thinker=Samwel_Kongere Thank you to Maria Agnese
      Giraudo, Kennedy Owino and the Nafsi Afrika Acrobats
      http://www.nafsiafrica.org Our dreams are coming true. Thank you for
      inspiring us!

      Our network and our culture have grown strong over the years. We have
      many opportunities, but also I have constraints that keep me running.
      Since 1998 I have accumulated more than $100,000 in debt to establish the
      Minciu Sodas laboratory. I make monthly payments of $1,400 on these loans
      and I need at least an $1,000 more for my needs and expenses. I don't
      have any income and I have about six weeks to find some. I hope to
      receive $7,100 this year from the Knight Foundation but that will only
      stretch things out for about two months more. I may have to take up a
      full-time job and bide my time for two or three years. This makes it all
      the more important to distribute our leadership so that we continue to
      grow and inspire. Most importantly, I ask myself, What do I truly want? I
      invite your leadership to let us know, What do you truly want?

      My life's work is to know everything and apply that knowledge usefully. I
      work almost every day to make sense of my conceptual limits
      http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?LivingByTruth/Summary I am making steady
      progress as I try to imagine how all knowledge unfolds from God's point of
      view. I think about how God takes up the question, does God exist even if
      God does not exist? and this leads me to consider the potential for God
      as it opens up from God to I to You to Other around whom we may all unite.
      Day by day I am jostling concepts so that I might see how they make sense
      and how they might bring forth dynamic languages for how things matter,
      have meaning and happen. This is lonely work, but our lab gives me hope
      that more and more, it will have practical impact and others will care.
      Our laboratory's purpose is to serve independent thinkers by providing
      helpful minds, a social framework for making our dreams real, ways to make
      a living and find resources, a context in which to grow, and moral
      support.

      I personally wish to grow in virtue as a human and a leader. I wish to
      empathize with others and live fully to take up every concern. I wish to
      learn how to accept hurt ably and transform it. I want to be masterfully
      creative, to learn what is meaningful to say, to recognize hurt and joy,
      and connect with others so that we might all live fully. I'm drawing
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/50525222@N00/ and writing a poetic drama in
      Lithuanian. I wish to write my Includer blog as episodes in a novel. I
      would like to fall in love and raise a family.

      I wish to serve God as an independent thinker. I welcome God's leadership
      just as I welcome all of ours. I invite us to make evident God's values,
      investigations, endeavors as an independent thinker, and likewise include
      all who may not be able to participate directly, so that we overcome every
      divide. I believe that God endeavors to "reach out to the hard to reach"
      for this is the endeavor that it seems that all of our endeavors work
      towards. http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?Endeavors I think that he
      investigates, how can he reach every single person? I would like to help
      by working together to understand each other's deepest values
      http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?Values This is also a way for us to
      accept each other, support each other, and foster our creativity to speak
      to and from each other. All of our deepest values are aspects of Love,
      which I take to be God's deepest value.

      In the next ten years I wish with others to bring to life a culture of
      independent thinkers, with at least 100,000 active participants, enough to
      make evident in many villages and neighborhoods and some regions or
      countries, how independent thinkers address all aspects of life. This is
      a culture of investigation, of leadership through any individual who
      openly takes up the challenge to grow. I am encouraged that more and more
      of us grow confident to take responsibility for our culture, which
      includes principles that help us act on each other's behalf: Our venues
      are in the Public Domain except where content notes otherwise; money can
      bring people together, but you can't pay people to care; we want all to
      succeed.

      We are, in fact, making practical many of the principles that Jesus spoke
      of: give everything away, love your enemy, turn the other cheek. More and
      more, I hear his vision of a "kingdom of heaven" as an invitation to
      establish the culture I and others wish for. He relates his vision with
      parables that say, "What you believe is what happens", just as the tiny
      DNA of a mustard seed already has within it the giant plant that unfolds.
      I think of eternal life as God's wish for each of us that as individuals,
      we forever grow and unfold. We are blessed at our laboratory to witness
      each other growing in this way, even as adults. I think of a kingdom as
      the wish for authority, which is not power, but responsibility for power.
      Muscles have power, but will has authority. The kingdom of heaven is for
      the "poor in spirit", the independent thinkers, who do not want to fling
      themselves as martyrs, but who wish to walk step-by-step, in small leaps,
      with small risks, by reproducible miracles, small projects, a science of
      subjectivity. The kingdom of heaven allows each of us to exercise our
      will, to apply ourselves to human-sized concerns, and walk and fly and
      unfold step-by-step forever, alongside each other and together. The
      kingdom of heaven invites each one of us to take authority as creators, to
      share authority as co-creators, and so to be authors.

      We will learn of more and more movements that make real such a culture.
      We know of Sarvodaya http://www.sarvodaya.org, the village movement in Sri
      Lanka, and of the Grameen social businesses in Bangladesh
      http://www.grameen-info.org We also have wonderful leaders, such as
      Benoit Couture's relentless passion for a "Kingdom Deep Net"
      http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?KingdomDeepNet and his deepest value
      "Going from the spiritual division of human DNA to the Organic Experience
      of Spiritual Unity." I am delighted that we have leaders from such a wide
      variety of faiths and outlooks, and I embolden us to project our visions
      even wider. Thank you to Franz Nahrada, Pamela McLean, John Rogers,
      Kennedy Owino, Samwel Kongere, Janet Feldman, Peter Ongele, Ricardo,
      Edward Cherlin, Tomas Cepaitis, Dante-Gabryell Monson, Chris Macrae, Peter
      Burgess, William Wambura, Josephat Ndibalema, Audrone Anusauskiene and
      many others.

      One of our great contributions will be to bring together all of our
      movements. Our culture is an eternal exploration of the minimal
      principles by which we might work together. The Internet should not be a
      requirement, but rather a catalyst and a metaphor for our network. I hope
      we might discover the structures for our online and offline venues that
      would allow us all to participate fully and freely. Minciu Sodas means
      "Orchard of Thoughts" in Lithuanian, which I later came to find quite
      prophetic for our haven as a Paradise, with trees of life and of knowledge
      of good and evil. Likewise, our "worknets" may be prophetic in the sense
      of Matthew 13:47. "Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a dragnet, that
      was cast into the sea, and gathered some fish of every kind, which, when
      it was filled, they drew up on the beach. They sat down, and gathered the
      good into containers, but the bad they threw away. So will it be in the
      end of the world." And likewise in his inviting disciples to be "fishers
      of men". This is all frightening, but the "kingdom of heaven" is about
      making belief, authority, truth, fear all human-sized, real and tangible,
      so that we might all participate. I expect that it is more about the
      absence of God than the presence of God, reaching out before God to the I
      and You and Other for whom God is understandably foreign, and to make
      sense of the world even as we transform it with a heart for living now and
      forever. I am sure we'll make progress by asking what a "kingdom of
      heaven" might mean to the widest variety of people.

      I will learn how to participate as one leader among many. Minciu Sodas is
      a base that I lead, but there should be thousands of such centers. I plan
      to headquarter myself at Zenonas and Audrone Anusauskas's center near the
      village of Eiciunai in Lithuania, but also stay at various centers such as
      David Ellison-Bey's house and Moorish Cultural Workshop at 6726 S Parnell
      Ave., Chicago, where I am now. How can we nurture our many centers for a
      vibrant network?

      My priority is to set up our online infrastructure to open up more
      opportunity for leadership and to decentralize our venues yet resonate our
      energy. I will try to set up Ringside Networks
      http://www.ringsidenetworks.org which is open-source software that allows
      us to set up our own social networking venues (like Facebook, but in the
      Public Domain) at more than one location, to share IDs amongst those
      locations, to show our Facebook activity but at our own sites, to write
      applications that work both at our sites but also at Facebook, and to
      invite others to drift over from Facebook and into our venues. If this
      all works out, then we will have control of our own venues and IDs and can
      integrate our activity at Yahoo groups http://www.ms.lt/news.php , our
      wiki http://www.worknets.org , our chat room http://www.worknets.org/chat/
      , our survey http://www.worknets.org/survey/ , our personal Facebook
      activity (for those who wish that), and our Ringside social networking
      pages. This might also open up work opportunities. Can we find
      programmers who might help us?

      I look forward to speaking with Pamela McLean, Samwel Kongere, Ricardo and
      others who might coach and mentor our participants. Franz Nahrada and
      Janet Feldman have a great impact on our laboratory, and as much as they
      are available, I value their leadership. I wish though to make clear new
      leadership roles and acknowledge and support the people who take them up.
      We should design the roles so our leaders benefit. Our working groups are
      active to various degrees. We need people who might mentor four or five
      working group leaders so that they might all generate momentum. This is a
      role that I have played and which I need to share. This might relate to
      the idea of "schools", each of which supports dozens of related endeavors,
      and makes tangible the leader's vision. I also want to recognize the
      leaders of the "local centers" in our network and the teams they are
      building.

      We have many opportunities to write proposals and engage potential
      clients. I can't pursue these all myself. Let's work openly in teams.
      If you lead a proposal team, then you can decide how much paid work you
      wish to specify for yourself and others. If you help with a proposal,
      then we will work to include you in our paid work, if we win any. Here
      are some proposals that I have written in the past:
      http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?Proposals Please write to any of our
      groups if you would like to be on any of our proposal teams, such as the
      following, and how you might like to participate:

      * Wolfram Science. In July, I attended Stephen Wolfram's summer school "A
      New Kind of Science". Last week I wrote a research proposal for him that
      I do an exhaustive study of the cellular automata that are the foundation
      for his approach. http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?CellularAutomata
      Earlier, I wrote a proposal that our social networkers work to expand the
      "A New Kind of Science" and Mathematica communities and encourage more
      people to do mathematical exploration and apply mathematical thinking.
      Stephen Wolfram was especially interested in our social networking
      capability. It may take a long time to build up this relationship, but it
      might also mean a lifetime of paid work from one of the world's greatest
      independent thinkers.

      * Includer. In June, I prepared a presentation
      http://www.includer.org/presentation/ for Internet businesses that they
      hire us to make their online services available offline. There are other
      angles that we can pursue. We should survey our African participants.
      Who might help us write proposals?

      * African Innovation Challenge Fund
      http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?AfricanInnovationChallengeFund Concept
      notes are due September 1 to propose teams that in Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria,
      Ghana or several other countries would promote the adaptation of
      innovations identified by Research Into Use, a UK agency. This is a great
      opportunity for us to showcase our achievements and propose a worldwide
      network of support with bases in the African countries but also in
      Eiciunai, Lithuania and at Factor E Farm. What are our personal visions?

      * Afghanistan http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?Afghanistan The Lithuanian
      Foreign Ministry is accepting proposals of up to 75,000 USD by September
      30 to help develop Afghanistan's Ghor province, especially for basic
      education, infant health and government communications. I believe our
      Includer proposal or an OLPC laptop proposal might be relevant, but we
      need partners in Afghanistan, and supporters in the ministry. I would
      like especially to organize Islamic independent thinkers, for example,
      school teachers and doctors, and help them make the most of marginal
      Internet access.

      * COMMUNIA http://www.communia-project.org , Ethical Public Domain
      http://www.ethicalpublicdomain.org We have already received 4,800 EUR of
      travel money for COMMUNIA meetings for the Public Domain, and we will
      receive a similar amount for travel these next two years. We also might
      organize another conference for the Ethical Public Domain or another event
      or activity to foster the Public Domain. Who would like to participate in
      COMMUNIA? and who would like to engage corporations and agencies to fund
      projects to expand the Public Domain?

      * Catholic schools in Chicago. We have an office at David Ellison-Bey's
      house in Chicago where I am staying. I look forward to introducing to
      David many people who I met at the SocDevCamp. I belong to St. Benedict
      the African East and would like us to engage the local community. People
      suffer intensely from the racial caste system. Our pastor's vision is that
      we engage the community through the Catholic schools. Indeed, for any
      family here, sending their children to a Catholic school is I believe one
      of the best investments. Our laboratory can help add to that a program of
      adult education. We can help adults locally get tutored to use the
      Internet and then get support from our worldwide community. This could be
      a general service. Perhaps the Catholic school system and other private
      schools might be willing to pay us to provide such adult education for
      parents who send their children to their schools because the more the
      parents study, the better the children will do.

      * Living Labs movement. We have the opportunity to join the European
      network of Living Labs. This might open the doors for us to win European
      Union funding. Who might help with this proposal? It's due September 30.
      http://www.worknets.org/wiki.cgi?LivingLabs

      We have many opportunities and I invite us to bring to us others that
      you'd like to pursue. Who are independent thinkers who you'd love to work
      for? Muhammad Yunus is one more example. What kind of money would you
      like to earn? What kind of work would you like to do? What is your
      personal vision for your life? How might you participate as a leader?
      Who would you like us to help or reach out to? How might we make our
      venues more effective for you? What are the questions that you'd like to
      pursue, the values you'd like to live, the endeavors that you'd like to
      achieve?

      Thank you for writing!

      Andrius

      Andrius Kulikauskas
      Minciu Sodas
      http://www.ms.lt
      ms@...
      +1 312 618 3345
      in Chicago until October 14
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