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Part consultancy, part thinktank, part social enterprise, Halcyon helps you prepare for and respond to personal, organisational and societal change.

Halcyon's forthcoming 52:52:52 campaign on Twitter will help you address 52 issues with 52 responses over 52 weeks.

To be a catalyst is the ambition most appropriate for those who see the world as being in constant change, and who, without thinking that they control it, wish to influence its direction - Theodore Zeldin

Halcyon In Kaleidoscope

What's Changing? - Measurement

 

Please see below selected recent measurement-related change.

 

2018

  • Quartz warned that, in an increasingly digital world with growing concerns about sustainability, dismay is mounting about the use of GDP as the benchmark measure for a nation’s economy. It fails to take into account other things that could be more valuable indicators about how a country is doing, such as inequality, well-being, happiness, clean air, and climate-change mitigation.

 

Pre 2018

On What We Think

Kaleidoscope

 

These pages highlight our founder Dominic's subjective views on the ever-changing range and scope of subjects that Halcyon focuses on.

This is less a blog than a set of irregularly updated and often fragmentary views - on ideas and values, places and people - evolving over time into mini essais which pay humble homage to the peerless founder of the genre.

The kaleidoscope is Halcyon's prime metaphor, encouraging us to embrace change and to view issues through an ever-moving series of lenses.

On Marcel Proust

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I realised that the essential book, the one true book, is one that the great writer does not need to invent, in the current sense of the word, since it already exists in every one of us — he has only to translate it. The task and the duty of a writer are those of a translator - Marcel Proust

After the BBC opened up its archives of In Our Time, I came to the episode about Marcel Proust.

On the Ethical Development Goals
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Halcyon In Kal… 8 July 2018

 

In spite of spectacular strides in science and technology, and still unlimited ones to come, something basic is missing. There is a sort of poverty of the spirit which stands in glaring contrast to our scientific and technological abundance. The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly the air like birds and swim the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers - Martin Luther King

This evolving paper will examine the overall Ethical Development Goals (EDGs) that Halcyon is developing to complement the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Introduction

The EDGs are inspired by the SDGs, officially known as ‘Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’, an intergovernmental set of aspiration Goals with 169 targets.

On Now

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Dave Pollard wrote thought-provokingly of the "Now Time”, a multidimensional recursive eternal present familiar to aboriginal cultures the world over, and recalling Friedrich Nietzche's desire to be a "yes-sayer" to each moment.

This recalls Camus' celebration of Sisyphus starting afresh each day and more recently, Eckhart Tolle's "power of now".

On Calvin and Hobbes

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"Possibly the best comic strip EVER in the history of the entire universe", claimed one commentator.

I think Dennis the Menace (in its heydey), Gaston Lagaffe and one or others may occupy the same pantheon as Calvin and Hobbes, but there is little doubt that, for all those of us who have been deeply touched by the warmth, humour, sheer humanity with which Bill Watterson blessed us over so many years, these creations occupy a very special place in our hearts.

On Others

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For me the purpose of life is to know other people…is to discover what life is. Who inhabits the world? What is it to be human? What can I give to the world which it doesn’t have…a gift for tolerating my presence in this world..…and unless I know the people, I can’t know what it does not have - Theodore Zeldin

Imagine balancing self-interest and caring for others. If this is possible, then:

(1) What is the approximate balance between the two today - in individuals, organisations and societies? How much time do we really spend thinking about and then acting on other people's needs?

On Albert Camus

Camus

 

I was first attracted by Camus, "prince of the absurd" when I was 16.  Camus still fascinates me, now well beyond what would have been his 100th birthday, and close to 60 years after his premature death in a car crash in Burgundy (it's said that he was found with an unused train ticket in his pocket - he'd planned to go by rail to Paris to rejoin his wife and children, but had accepted at the last minute the offer of a lift from his publisher).

On Slowness

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Slowness as a movement is about the idea that to be fast, you first have to be slow and get things right.

The seeming acceleration of just about every facet of modern life seems to be such that if you blink you miss something.

A growing number of people are deciding to opt out, downshift or otherwise "go with the slow" in order to take back their time.  There is even a growing slow food movement and a renewed interest in handcraft movements.

On Pablo Picasso

Las Meninas

 

As the pioneer of Cubism, godfather to the Surrealists, and creator of the enduring anti-war painting Guernica, Picasso produced thousands of paintings in his lifetime, not to mention his sculptures, ceramics, stage designs, poetry and plays. A recent BBC Forum discussion looked at Picasso’s life and work.

Three of Picasso's many interpretations of Las Meninas by Velasquez stare down from our walls. This short video helps the non-expert interpret Picasso's works.

 

On Countries

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Imagine that we could build "start-up countries" and escape limiting, outdated forms of governance that hold people back. "Seasteading", according to its advocates, has the promise to do this, creating new "spaces for human freedom".

On 52:52:52

52s

 

Halcyon's 52:52:52 campaign will launch in the second half of 2018 and will feature 52 fast-changing issues and 52 possible responses, over 52 weeks.

 

On Jean-Paul Sartre
Sartre
Halcyon In Kal… 14 May 2018

 

 

Man is nothing else but that which he makes of himself. That is the first principle of existentialism

On Beltane
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Halcyon In Kal… 1 May 2018

 

"See Pan the Piper dancing in the greenwood dawn...Earth, Water, Fire, Air, dancing round the Maypole...at Beltane, light a Beltane fire, high on the skyline" - from Ancient Dream, Aeolian Songspell