With Hearts Linked Together
Joean Oon Siew Kee, Eco-Enzymes,
and the Philosophy of Relationships
To learn about the work of Joean Oon Siew Kee,
with eco-enzymes, please click here
for a small pamplet in pdf form
Heart, Hands, and Head
Joean Oon Siew Kee believes that eco-enzymes are a tool for helping build ecological civilization in local communities. Eco-communities are built on healthy relationships between people, animals, and the earth. They are creative, compassionate, participatory, culturally diverse, and spiritually satisfying, with no one left behind. She uses the word "happiness" often in her talks. In such communities, she says, people are happy, families are happy, friends are happy, and the earth is happy. She describes her own work as originating from feelings in the heart (compassion, care, connection) combined with practical, bodily action. She adds that these two areas of life must be combined with, in her words, "thinking" about who we are and who we can be. What might it be like to "think" in a way that complements the good work of the heart and hands? Those of us involved with the Center for Process Studies and IPDC suggest that it is to think in terms of "relationships" and "hearts linked together." (Jay McDaniel)
With Hearts Linked Together
The Institute for Postmodern Development of China invites us to travel the path of Tong (通). The word Tong is composed of two parts -- walk and road – suggesting the idea of walking on a road, with our own footsteps helping create the path. The Chinese government speaks of five kinds of Tong, one of the most important of which is walking on a road “with hearts linked together” (Xin Tong).
This phrase has deep meaning to those of us influenced by process (constructive postmodern, open and relational) philosophy, because we believe that our hearts are already linked together at the deepest level – linked with one another, even if we are not friends, linked with the more than human world, and linked with Heaven.
Xin Tong invites us to think of ourselves as walking a road with “hearts linked together” in appreciating the beauty of the world, in taking seriously the threats we face today, in hearing the call of Heaven to be world-menders, and in being world-menders. IPDC is a world-mending enterprise and, more than that, a world-mending community.
What is remarkable about IPDC is not only its many accomplishments: the conferences, the visiting scholars, the essays and articles, the books. The achievements are more than anyone could imagine. But what is equally remarkable is also the network of Tong-seeking people IPDC now brings together: Chinese and American and from others countries as well.
IPDC is a world-mending enterprise and, more than that, a world-mending community. What is remarkable about IPDC is not only its many accomplishments: the conferences, the visiting scholars, the essays and articles, the books. The achievements are more than anyone could imagine. But what is equally remarkable is also the network of Tong-seeking people IPDC now brings together: Chinese and American and from others countries as well.
The Philosophy of Relationships
Relationships are the spiritual web of our lives. The crucial strands of family, intimate relationships, marriage, friends, community, nature, and place and the wider world.
The quality of our spiritual lives is measured by these essential bonds. Indeed, our relationship with with God is reflected and expressed in these and other relationships.
They are the essential meaning and miracle in our days. They are the arena in which we exercise our values and express our visions.
Relationships enrich our lives with intimacy, purpose, healing, and wholeness. They also draw out our fear, anger, envy, hatred, pain, greed, and shame. Through inner work, we can befriend the shadow, face death, and renew our spirits.
As we explore our relationships and the feelings that come with them, we find that they are hitched to everything else in the world. We are parts of the whole and obligated to love both the familiar and the mysterious, often fearsome “other.”
Although terrible and divisive forces may eat away at our relationships, the spiritual web can never be destroyed. The Spirit sustains us as we patch and reweave the web again and again.
Finally, relationships are our training ground. “Being human is an accomplishment like playing an instrument.” Michael Ignatieff once observed. “It takes practice.” Through our connections with the whole and the holy, we learn how to be fully human. (Frederic Brussat, Spirituality and Practice)