Readers of my blog, books, and essays know about the 3 Cs and the 3 Rs of humane education: Fostering Curiosity, Creativity, and Critical Thinking and Instilling Reverence, Respect, and Responsibility. These are components of quality humane education largely because, without them, positive personal change and problem-solving are impaired.
Now that we’re offering MOGO (Most Good) workshops to people striving to make their lives more aligned with their values, I’ve come to recognize that there are 3 Is involved in lifelong learning and the pursuit of personal change. They are: Inquiry, Introspection, and Integrity. These are not elements specific to the teacher offering humane education, but rather they are elements for all individuals to bring to their own journeys toward humane living.
Inquiry: In order to align our life choices with our values, we need to inquire about the effects of our actions (and inactions) on ourselves and others. Although we are always stumbling upon knowledge that shifts our choices and life direction, bringing conscious inquiry to the forefront of our minds means that we will continually and consciously ask questions that lead us to the information we need to make informed decisions.
Introspection: As we ask questions and gather information, if we are to make meaningful changes we will need to introspect, that is to look inward and see where the confluence of new knowledge and our life choices lies. It’s likely we’ll periodically feel some conflict between our habits and desires and the truth of what we’ve learned, but this is why a commitment to introspection is so important. We dive below our surface desires and habits to discover our deepest visions, dreams, and commitments.
Integrity: As we open our hearts and minds to inquiry, as we acquire the information we need to make informed and conscious decisions, and as we introspect, we are then called upon to act in accordance with our new knowledge and our deepest values. This is integrity.
Together, these 3 Is bring our dreams and hopes for a better world to life. They provide a simple map for lifelong learning and choicemaking that can inform our everyday decisions, as well as our careers, relationships, political involvement, volunteer work, and all of the ways in which we participate in creating change in the world. Using the 3 Is brings about not only a better world but a more joyful, meaningful life.
~ Zoe, IHE President