From: Andrew Phelps <>


Subject: [s-acc] behavior metaphor

Date: Wed 07/25/12 07:53 PM



I'm trying to work on the "occupy our behavior" approach to promoting dignity and respect in the client/survivor movement and in the general social experience. To get such a dialogue in motion, some issues - it seems - obtain. I'm not ready to present a comprehensive view on that matter. What I find is that ideation keeps arising for me. [!]

One metaphor is the "naked person" problem. Archimedes was sitting in his bathtub when he suddenly got the insight about how to tell if the king's new crown was made of gold or was merely an alloy. He jumped up, and ran out on the street, stark naked. Are we to describe that as "naked behavior" or are we to understand that is "inspired behavior?"

In California, the town of Eureka is named for the comment Archimedes made: "I have found it" (in Greek). By today's standards, however, it would seem that Archimedes had a "behavior problem" and that we are in fact memorializing "bad behavior." :-( Within that framework we find concerns for vilification. We also find issues related to banging when we seek to keep things from getting totally out of hand.

At another level, when we seek to be ourselves by "behavior occupation," we may likely get the finger pointed at us for "low character," we may face some sort of vilification. Sometimes of course that relates to actual acts of wickedness, but as people who work hard for social accountability we encounter a tendency to vilify us for our attitudes of "taking responsibility." What I'm saying is that "occupy our behavior" is going to bring that kind of concern to the fore, and we will have to address it anew. Many complexities obtain, I believe, if we are going to "get it right" with various matters of ways of being.


ABO "Andrew Behavior Object"