A friend of mine sent me a great article on power. It is a must read! I don’t know much about the author, Kathy Escobar, but based on this one article alone, I know this woman right on target.
The article is about the stages of power. I think these stages fit perfectly with everything that is going on in the US right now.
Here’s the listing of the five stages (please read the article for a full description)
- Power by Association
- Power by Symbol and Achievement
- Power by Inner Knowledge and Reflection
- Power by Known Purpose
Here’s why I think this concept of the stages of power is so fitting. I see the response of so many people in regards to what is happening in the US right now being stuck in stages 1-3. These are places that it is easy to get stuck in. These are places where power comes from the external – somewhere else. We aren’t responsible for it. We are more like waves in the ocean in the sense that the ocean moves us as it will, but we have no say in where it takes it. We are essentially victims in which power is given and can be taken away because power never started with us – it belonged to someone else.
I see institutions wanting to keep people in those stages too – because the institutions can be the ones who deal out power as they wish. And if they can deal it out, they can take it away.
But this is not where the story has to end. Things can be different. But in order for that to happen, there needs to be a different outlook, a different worldview, a different sense of worth, what is important, and what and who are valued.