Working Together is Better

Working to Move Cement to Roof

We Create Our Collective Future Daily

Moving to another country opens new doors on a number of levels.  There are opportunities to get to know new people, new customs and perhaps a new language (or even two). One of the intriguing things about living in Ecuador is having daily exposure to people who have lived here for generations and whose customs have served them well for hundreds if not thousands of years; so why do so many outsiders feel perfectly entitled to land here and tell the native born how they should live their lives?

As North Americans move in it is natural that they bring their background experiences, cultural values and ways of looking at life with them. Sometimes these things are helpful and sometimes they erect barriers. We have discovered many wonderful things about Ecuador and we have decided to live here to partake of those good things right along with our Ecuadorian neighbors.   Truth be told, we decided to come here without being invited, and some fit in or try to fit in more easily than others.  I think one of the most difficult things for people is to see themselves as others see them, and this is doubly true when being seen from the eyes of anyone who has a cultural background and national history quite different than one’s own.

How are we the same and how are we different?  How do we work with each other to better our mutual understanding and respect, and how do we work together to solve problems and to improve our community at large?

There will always be those who couldn’t care less about learning anything about the people whose country they have just settled in.  There will also be those native born people who will forever be suspect or even worse in their attitudes towards foreigners. We cannot do much about those people, but we can do much with those who want to join hands, learn to speak with and get to know the people into whose country we have immigrated. This is a challenge for sure, but if you believe in this kind of effort let’s get together, listen to each other and find ways to work together toward that ideal. Circle on the Square invites you to participate in this effort.  If you are interested please contact me at

The featured image was taken at a minga (community work party) hosted by a U.S. expat couple while building their home in the gated community of San Miguel. I love the image because it illustrates what people can do when they work together to get a job done.  One of the lessons the Teachers of the Higher Planes teach is that people are collectively responsible for the quality of life wherever they live.  When people put their energies and work toward the common good, I believe the universe always blesses their work.