Another thing that occurred to me, after talking to Usha and on the way to seeing Ross yesterday, is that the organization we’re creating is actually something distinct from what I’ve been calling the “platform.”
The platform—A Theory of Everybody—is essentially a publishing and community space: a place for art, literature, thinking, activism, and alchemical discourse.
The organization that sustains the platform, however, is a distinct (yet deeply and intimately related) entity. It may do other things besides publish writing and facilitate “infinite conversations.”
The organization—which touches the community around it AND the other organizations and individuals outside it with whom it shares an “ecosystem”—is a thing unto itself, which will develop its own intelligence, capacities, and resources that contribute to the wider space.
This could be in the form of consulting, education, training, etc. (—which can also become sources of income and sustenance). As we learn how to build a high-level, nourishing, and generative platform that supports a unique diversity of expressions, we will be able to share this learning with others.
As its own thing, it’s up to us to really define it, bring it forth, and open to what it wants to be. And, while I have a number of specific ideas about A Theory of Everybody as a platform, I’m in a much more inchoate state when it comes to the identity of the organization itself.
What I also realized is that it’s important that our vision and understanding of what the organization is emerge out of our dialogue with each other.
One very simple and concrete example of this has to do with the name. When I invited Jeremy to the Infinite Conversations site, I noticed how much I liked his email address (@evolver.net), and how, while I really like all the names of the various aspects of A Theory of Everybody, none of them really makes a good email address. (This is why I continue to use email@example.com—Zoosphere being the name of my LLC.)
So, Criteria #1 for our organizational name: it needs to make a good email address.
But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Ultimately, we need to enter into the inquiry of what we’re really doing together, and how we’re doing it, and how this wants to enter into the world.
Stuff like legal structure, non-profit status, roles and functions, etc.—will also follow from this. (That was the upshot of my meeting with Ross.)