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Sleepwalkers making $70,000 an hour on Strategic Planning for Philanthropy

Business thinkers from the best business schools and top consulting firms are turning their hands to phlilanthropy consulting - or social investing, or giving smart, or creating shared value, or giving for results, or doing more than giving to get results. I read these books carefully, and teach them with great (feigned but credibly mimed) respect. (People who make $70,000+ an hour for a speech are wiser in the ways of wealth-in-the-world than I.) They are very good on the how of giving, or other ways of coercing and changing society towards ends envisioned by the giver - who may be a human without any moral imagination or taste, or conscience. All we need posit is an end in view, a lot of money, and strategy. Of course all such books of strategic result getting have to mention setting goals, or vision. Those sections of these books are utterly banal. We set goals by writing them on a sheet of paper, or sorting values cards. Prayer, meditation, the dark night of the soul, listening to faint signals of the future, repentence, or the death of the daylight self and the birthing of new shared social consciousness - these are "out of scope" for such strategic philanthropy texts. Equally out of scope are all of literature, philosophy, psychology, sociology, dance, music, or any other way of elevating the mundane often narrowly educated thinking of the philanthropic strategist. Exceptions to such business thinking are Presencing and Theory U. These are far better on the emergence of true vision (for a person, company, community) from the muck and mire familiar to the poets, c.f. "the rag and bone shop of the heart," Yeats, "the place were all poems start.") Yet, the books don't mention philanthropy as an expression of such higher, transpersonal, intentions. Peter Karoff stands at this intersection between poetry and philanthropy as a sole figure gesticulating like a man directing the phantom traffic of sleepwalkers.

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