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Waterloo Deep Dive Series

Waterloo is offering a Community Deep Dive Series—events designed to unpack the ideas animating Waterloo’s vision and offering practical tools to help address pressing questions like these: How do we remain relational when conflict threatens to embitter a cherished relationship? When tempted to check out online, what habits can we develop to do deep work and be present with our loved ones? How can I live well with the tensions that emerge as I discover how complex the world is? We are sharing three tools to serve as reminders of key skills and habits we need to cultivate to become and remain whole people in the midst of many pressures and challenges.

Our first Community Deep Dive centered on the relationships. Based on the book Rare Leadership by Marcus Warner and Jim Wilder, we explored how our brains and emotions are deeply connected. We need habits of Remaining relational in conflict, Acting like ourselves, Returning to joy rather than fear, and Enduring hardship together. These ‘RARE’ skills are crucial for leadership and for maintaining healthy and resilient personalities through time as we mature and learn.

Our second Deep Dive was about developing skills of deep living in the midst of fast-changing communications technologies, and an economy increasingly competing for our attention. Screen technologies have profoundly changed how we live, work and play. And these technologies are in many ways a gift. But technology itself cannot form us into healthy, whole people. Inspired by Andy Crouch’s The Tech-wise Family, and Cal Newport’s Deep Work, we explored ‘DEEP’ habits of Discerning what’s valuable, Embodying living, Embracing boredom, and having Personal purpose.

Maturing requires a different attitude toward complexity. So our third Deep Dive on Saturday will equip us to engage it well. Many challenges we face in life seem like a simple Either/Or—I must either choose A, or choose B. Practical education or Idealistic; justice or mercy; enjoying wealth or caring for the poor; taking care of myself or being self-sacrificial. As we’ve seen in our public discourse, this can slide into an intractable position—either you are for me and what I believe, or you are against me and what I believe, and if the answer is the latter, then there’s little reason to even talk.

What if there is a more mature way to look at those choices, not as a simple Either/Or, but as an opportunity for a Both/And? Can we both disagree and be in healthy community together? Can maturity help us hold complex realities in tension and lead to richer life and wisdom? Join us to explore what it means to engage challenges with a principled pluralism—with a maturity that can live with tensions—and flourish and build healthy community and life.

Bryce Carlisle