Personal Reflection: My Leader’s Stance

The moment we choose to love we begin to move against domination, against oppression. The moment we choose to love we begin to move toward freedom, to act in ways that liberate ourselves and others. That action is the testimony of love as the practice of freedom.”

– bell hooks, Outlaw Culture: Resisting Representation

Like bell hooks, my worldview is framed by a love ethic. As a social worker, I believe it is my heart that is my greatest asset as a teacher and a leader. It is also the only path I have found toward empowerment. Parker Palmer in his book, Healing the Heart of Democracy states,

Will the heart break open or apart when it encounters life’s demands? Everything depends on the qualities of the heart on which those demands are laid and on how it has been formed or deformed. Is it an experienced heart, a reflective heart, a heart made supple by inner exercise and responsive engagement with life? Or is it a heart grown brittle from being wounded, unattended and unhealed, sheltered and withdrawn, a heart more prone to shattering in the face of yet another demand? (p. 72)

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