Self-Portrait

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Jerry with wife, Kim Allen

Jerry Kaiser

Caring Matters
455 Huckleberry Lane
Boulder Creek, California 95006
USA

( 831) 338-3165

email

Granddaughter Avianna Boccio

 

What is an underlying question that gives form to your work or interest in this field?

How can the energy field (actual or metaphorical) of the collective expand to envelop and nurture new members, while further deepening the wisdom of its existing individuals and communities?

What is your personal experience of collective wisdom in groups?

I have experienced the “wisdom” of groups in its bio-psycho-social-spiritualdimensions: a transcendence and synergy in the group resonance experienced in athletics, dance, and other physical activities; in the timelessness of group musical performance; in the harmony, spoken or unspoken, of family and community; in the silence of collective meditation and prayer.

As facilitator and participant, I have experienced wisdom as much from the spaces between what is said as I have from what is said.

What is it about the work in this field that excites you and connects you to your own deepest self?

The answers to the most significant challenges I face as an individual - and, I believe, that we face as a global community ¬ can only come from a place deeper than “intelligence.” For me, wisdom exists when what we know emerges from beyond how we know it. It is often the complexity that exists within simplicity. I believe these answers are just beyond our collective peripheral vision, but, at the same time, are accessible. So there’s an excitement both in the quest, and in the allowing.

Please provide a brief storyline or snapshot of what brought you to this work.

What brought me to this work emerged out of the death of my father when I was 6 years old: the alienation from both peers and adults, the search for connection, and my experience as an “outsider.” Conventional models didn’t fit; I explored others. I developed non-traditional curricula and teaching with high school and college students, explored spiritual traditions and practices, and looked more to the heart than the head in my life trajectory.

I offered group consciousness-raising experiences as “alternatives to drugs” programs and a state-funded meditation/stress management program for my high school students, and directed grief counseling groups in a school which experienced several student deaths during one semester. Directing union programs for distressed populations (unemployed miners, industrial workers, etc.), I was able to present alternative health practices like meditation and yoga in ways that made sense to people who would otherwise not accept them. And, in each of the above-mentioned, engaging the wisdom of the whole provided more healing for all concerned than did the methodologies.

My participation in the Fetzer Institute’s “relationship-centered care” project exposed me to both processes and people which made a profound difference in my life, and to contribute to nurturing and expanding the group.

As the above-mentioned describes “knowing but not knowing how”, I can’t isolate a mentor, philosophy, or process which has been more meaningful than others...

How would you like to be available to others in this field?

I would like to be available and contribute through whatever might speak to others in this field, and, although I don’t feel that I have anything profound to say, I am certainly available to talk (and listen) with others anytime.

Links to this site or others:

Caring Matters

Caring Matters blog


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