Understanding the worldviews of others


Various techniques can be used to help each party understand the other’s view. For example, visual display — a cartoon, or a chart, or a picture — can be helpful. Another method is to bring influential and respected parties to the table — elders or other key community leaders — whose opinion might help open the minds of the protagonists. Whatever the technique, the goal is to have one side see the other side’s worldview as having been arrived at honestly — either based on logic, or passion, or faith, or some other force. The objective is to accept that the other’s worldview is different, but it still has its own integrity.

When the facilitator perceives that it was a communication problem that impeded the larger process, resolution may involve a certain amount of shuttle diplomacy. Sometimes, the parties never meet together. When the protagonists have achieved sufficient understanding of each other’s perspectives, the facilitator may communicate this to both sides separately, and group meetings can resume. With the permission of the protagonists, the larger group is now notified of a date for the next meeting.

About Strategies

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