Author: Dina-Perla Portnaar
Recently, I wrote the article Why organisations need a Chief Spiritual Officer. From the higher consciousness community, I received praise, support and above all confirmation through recognition. For example: “kind of something that you dare to go public with this idea in the Dutch business world, but I so agree”. From the business world, there were a number of critical reactions: should managers and professionals not just use common sense? Is this bla bla or spiritual garbage? Finally, should there be a separate function for meaning and personal growth, similar to the Chief Happiness Officers we have and others?
Meanwhile, the wonderful announcement was made by Marianne Williamson, spiritual leader, writer and ambassador of the psychological-spiritual system A course in miracles. She nominates herself as candidate for the American elections again. She substantiated this with:
“The lower inclinations of human nature cannot be defeated by politics alone, but they can be overridden. Our political circumstances are not simply a product of external policies, but even more so of internal dynamics like fear, desperation, hope and yearning. The mindset of the current political establishment neither acknowledges nor understands the deeper emotional and psychological rivers that underlie political forces on the move today.”
Read this a couple of times and let it sink in fully. What Williamson wrote, also goes for organizations. It concerns transitions, innovations, mind building and the new era. It is about deep thinking.
Spirituality is a separate domain
We come a long way with common sense and professionalism. People are not hired for any reason and are not just randomly working in a specific field. With the notion that employees are not just resources, capital goods and means of production (Human Resources is not a sensible term), we are also progressing. Everyone is here in the world to contribute in their own way. I am a bit more hopeful due to the growing realization that spirituality is not spiritual garbage, or only linked to philosophies and religion. Spirituality is a separate domain requesting the creation of a separate role, as it applies to every specialization. This can happen without ego and the empty shell of job titles for the sake of job titles; without perishable trends. A specialist has knowledge of psychological, spiritual and philosophical works and has certain skills. And yes, even though everyone has the ability to evolve in terms of SQ, just like IQ and EQ.
Acting from higher consciousness
Let’s take a look at the missteps within organizations, where common sense and professionalism were oh so present, they thought. The parallel can be drawn with politics. How is it possible that these missteps have occurred and with those consequences? The answer remains due to a lack of acting from a higher level of consciousness, which a specialist could guard.
The idea of Chief Spiritual Officers is to stimulate deep thinking, renewal, social courage and guidance from a moral compass in every individual. It also is about the connection of the inner to the outer life, in order for people to experience more joy and vitality and to be adaptive in changing times – the most important aspect with robotisation and more developments just around the corner and a precondition for progress.
It is not for nothing that initiatives such as the Awareness School or The School of Life are succeeding these days. It also says a lot that media initiatives such as OnBeing, Soundstrue Media or Impact Theory do well over all national borders. Finally, it is no coincidence that online education player Mindvalley talks about organizations that will be there as ecosystems for all their stakeholders and not the other way around. In addition, not only the money mindset and performance will be prioritized, but also meaning and personal growth.
Concrete examples of deep thinking within diverse disciplines
Does deep thinking and consulting by Chief Spiritual Officers continue to be limited to the personal growth of professionals? Is it equal to spiritual garbage and bla bla? Of course not. With the innovations, changes and new expertise within each discipline, the Chief Spiritual Officer brings together polarities and decrypts mechanisms, together with managers and professionals.
Examples: a self-driving car signals that a child is crossing the street and calculates that the successive appointment could possibly bring in a deal of five million euros, versus a loss of thirty thousand euros of damage. Who is held accountable? At the onboarding, a bank keeps track of whether someone is white or dark and gives loans to white people rather than colored ones. How is racism prevented? Hospitals work with stem cells to investigate combinations between humans and animals. Robots take over body and mind completely, but spirit must remain in the hands of people. Who stands up for the interests of patients with a desire to have children, who really benefit from the development of certain technologies? This is only the beginning. We should however, be willing to understand. And yes, then support from for example, Marianne Williamson is definitely valuable.