I am looking out a window. I see my childhood. I see a lake.
It is summer in Finland, and I am sitting in the summer cottage my grandmother bought in the 1950ies. I am editing the next edition of Adult Education and Development. I read texts from all over the world. They tell stories about what it means to be a citizen on this planet. They are touching, personal, angry. They are calls for action, testimonials, everyday insights. They are engaged, constructive, analytical.
As I sit and watch the lake that has not changed for millennia the world comes to me. I feel privileged. By nature I am curious, and this job lets me explore and get to know things I have never encountered before. As each issue we do focuses on a new topic the work is always fresh. The world is a violent place. We are consuming natural resources at an increasing speed. There is certainly no lack of suffering or injustice. Sitting here, looking at the lake is soothing. Calming. I know and understand that what we do in lifelong learning will not solve the challenges humanity is facing. I know our journal will not bring food to the hungry, fight corruption or make things more sustainable. Those are other fights, hard and long. With this in mind, is a journal like AED worthwhile to pursue?
Yes. Yes yes yes. Action without thought is headless. We need to think about what needs to be done. We need to see the patterns of change, learn from each other. We need to give each other strength. People involved in lifelong learning are a varied bunch. Yet when we receive an increasing amount of unsolicited articles from all corners of the world I know we are onto something. The mix of analysis, practical examples, life stories, case studies, reflections and calls for action creates a strong brew. We are rooted in the global adult education community. We are one of the voices.
The feedback we get is positive. I feel that we pour our experience, understanding and thoughts into the journal, and it is being received. Our efforts are being noticed. And we keep pushing ourselves. We try our hardest for each issue to be better than the last.
In the end you, the reader, will provide the verdict. If you find it useful. If it gives you strength, hope, ideas, motivation to fight the necessary fights, we have succeeded.
As I write this we are just finishing the work of the next issue, looking at global citizenship education. I think it will be our best issue yet.