At this time of the most serious civil unrest in the U.S. and our experience here in Minnesota, with very hard to understand tactical judgment by police officers, setting standards for public governance deserves the highest priority.
Recently, we had a conversation with Rene Mendez, the City Manager of Gonzales, California, on his values and vision of leadership. Though only the manager of a small city, Rene’s views display the Caux Round Table’s recommendation that public office is a public trust.
Just as companies have stewardship responsibilities for stakeholders, so too do governments have stewardship or fiduciary obligations to citizens.
One of my most influential guides in the work I do is John Dalla Costa, now retired in Italy. We asked John to join us for a podcast conversation on the raw ethical issues we as a global community now face in coming out of lockdown and seeking to balance the health of all, of some in particular and our need for “daily bread,” as Christian scripture puts it.
I hope you might have a moment to join the conversation vicariously and learn as I did from John.
Our podcast this week is a conversation with Ven. Anil Sakya, the Honorary Rector of the World Buddhist University in Bangkok, Thailand. He and I have collaborated in writing commentaries on the first sermons of the Buddha on the Dharma and how we should live well in the reality surrounding us in every dimension, material and spiritual, as providing us with reliable guidance on achieving sustainability in our time.
Ven. Anil was born in Nepal into the Sakya Clan, the family of the Buddha. He came to Thailand where he has been a Theravada monk. He graduated with a M.Phil from Cambridge University and later with a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology at Brunel University in the U.K. He served as Secretary to the late Supreme Patriarch of Thailand.
Currently, he is residing at the royal monastery of Wat Bovoranives Vihara in Bangkok where he is an Assistant Abbot. He is the Honorary Rector of the World Buddhist University under the World Fellowship of Buddhists and Deputy Rector of the Mahamakut Buddhist University.
Some years ago, I found in St. Louis a little plaque with the words “All Crises Pass.” Believing that we have many crises in our life but, in the end, they do pass, I bought it and have it in my office as a reminder to “keep calm and carry on” to do our best with hope and fortitude.
Our podcast with Ven. Anil talks about resilience and living in and through crisis, whether caused by a virus or by our own wayward thoughts and emotions.
His lively wisdom and succinctly presented insights will impress and reassure you.
Today’s podcast is a conversation with Jean Rognetta, a colleague from France.
Jean is the Editor at Large of Forbes France and directs EuropeEntrepreneur. He is the Founder and President of the primary French think tank on the financing of independent businesses, PMEfinance and its Europe Entrepreneurs clubs. He is a former General Delegate of CroissancePlus, an entrepreneurs group in Paris. Jean started his career in journalism in 1997 with Vivendi as the Editor of the professional letters, Jour. From 2000 to 2016, he wrote for Les Echos and Capital Finance, respectively France’s leading financial daily and private equity newsletter. An early observer and analyst of the digital revolution, he has written or co-authored several books, most recently La République des Réseaux (Fayard).
Jean comments on the advantages of one country learning immediately from the successes and failures of other countries in their efforts to contain the new coronavirus. He sees the virus having reached its peak in Italy, about to reach its peak in France and then in the U.K. a week or so after that.
From his perspective, Jean sees the Anglo-Saxon cultures of the U.K. and the U.S. more aligned with social Darwinism and so more tolerant of inequality of impacts than European cultures.
I hope you will have a moment to watch and consider his reflections.
Michael Wright proposed that, after this crisis, we will need to shape the internet and its socializing to provide corridors of intellectual and emotional safety for people to encourage the flourishing of trust.
On today’s podcast, we hosted imam Asad Zaman, Director of the Minnesota Chapter of the Muslim American Society and imam of the Masjid At-Taqwa mosque in St. Paul, Minnesota. Imam Asad the other year told me about the covenants the Prophet Muhammad made with Christian communities to respect and protect them. As a result, we’re undertaking a study project to learn more about these covenants and their application in our time.
Our discussion today stood its ground on the conclusion that finding possibilities for betterment in adversity is stimulated by our faith conviction about who we are in relationship with others.
With Devry Boughner Vorwerk of our board of directors, Michael Wright, one of our advisors and Alan Fine, who teaches at the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota, we are starting a daily podcast to reflect on the unprecedented global “shutdown” attempting to halt the spread of COVID-19.
We want to provide ideas and a values perspective on responses to the restrictions imposed by governments and recommended by individual common sense as people remove themselves from social interactions and accustomed occupations.