Re: Making changes in our decisions
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Tue, 13 May 2003 10:04:02 -0600 (MDT)
On 5/13/2003 11:27 AM, "Casey Morrigan" <cjmorr [at]> wrote:

> the group was exhausting itself in revisiting decisions over
> and over, or having one absent member re-raise an issue cuz they weren't at
> the meeting where it was made.  I was reading Sharon's post about
> sociocracy, and her thoughts that revisiting a decision doesn't hurt.  I was
> remembering my felt experience about revisiting decisions all the time.  It
> was like wallowing in mud!  It was so difficult.

I wasn't suggesting that it didn't hurt to be constantly revisiting
decisions -- certainly this is draining and unproductive. What I was saying
is that length of time or number of members aren't productive criteria on
which to base decisions to reopen decisions. They will not produce or ensure
the best interests of your community.

The argument is the basis on which decisions should reopened. To reopen a
decision there should be changed circumstances or new information. There
should be a reason for reopening the decision -- a new member is not one of
them unless the new member results in changing the criteria on which the
original decision was made.

I was part of a group that required 4 people to reopen but many people will
support anyone who wants to discuss any issue. It was easy to get support
for reopening any decision on no basis at all.

But requiring that there be a reason for reopening -- that new information
is available or that circumstances are changed -- is a condition that
ensures that decisions can be reconsidered when necessary and appropriate.
Further, this encourages groups and individuals to focus on criteria and
reasoning so it is clear whether there are changed circumstances or new

(Cohousing Truth #509,798: The ability of a group to forget not only why
they made a decision but that they ever made it all is unlimited.)

Sharon Villines, Washington DC
Where all roads lead to Casablanca

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