The integrity of a community or organization rests with the integrity of the individuals involved. Each individual has a responsibility to the community to continually develop themselves. They also have an opportunity to grow and develop through their relationships within the organization. The wisdom in a community is often spelled out in the covenants and agreements laid down over time through the experience of working together. In Building Regenerative Communities, Mary Christenson and Marianne Fieber identified an inspired set of practices outlined by Don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Five Agreements, that help each individual bring their highest self to their work in the community.
They recommend that each participant become familiar with and practice the Five
Agreements outlined by Don Miguel Ruiz:
1. Be impeccable with your word.
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to
speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.
2. Don’t take anything personally.
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.
3. Don’t make assumptions.
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings,
sadness, and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely
transform your life.
4. Always do your best.
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are tired as opposed to well rested. Under any circumstance,
simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and
5. Be skeptical, but learn to listen.
Don’t believe yourself or anybody else. Use the power of doubt to question
everything you hear: Is it really the truth? Listen to the intent behind the words, and you will understand the real message.
As Don Miguel Ruiz says, “By practicing the Five Agreements, what you are really doing is respecting everything in creation. You are respecting your dream; you are respecting everybody else’s dream. If you use these tools, your effort is really for everyone, because your joy, your happiness, your peace, and your heaven are contagious. When you are happy, the people around you are happy too, and it inspires them to change their own world.”
~ Marianne Fieber
The Five Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz « Waking Giant Blog, http://wakinggiant.wordpress.com/2010/01/17/the-five-agreements-by-don-miguel-ruiz/