“In dwelling, live close to the ground. In thinking, keep to the simple. In conflict, be fair and generous. In governing, don’t try to control. In work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present.”
–Tao Te Ching
I was looking for a quotation on conflict, and then I found so much more. I have had a lot of thoughts running through my head lately. The decline of people using good manners, how our capitalist society seems to be consuming itself, and how to overcome these issues. I have come to the conclusion that it needs to begin at home. Teaching the new generation that manners breed respect. Also practicing polite and kind behaviours ourselves.
In a society so obsessed with winning, it seems that the notion that not every situation has to have a loser has been lost. We are so predisposed to conflict it at times makes me sick. People that automatically take an opposite view for the sake of argument do not accomplish anything. Yet our corporations are always trying to promote teamwork between people that have been taught since they were little that they need to be the best.
We have compromised so much to be number one, family, friends, community, and our sense of fellowship. Even though I am sad by the prospect that our society is getting to be more and more self absorbed I do have hope. I think that the Internet has opened up new doors to create community and bring back the sense of fellowship. I also think that sharing ideas is going to take us to the next level, something that had been somewhat dormant for a generation. I believe creativity and progress is moving us forward in this digital world.
From the quote above I can take many things, but concentrating on conflict I come to the conclusion that as a society we need to work on compromise. We need to erase the notion that for someone to be a winner there has to be a loser, and that helping others is more rewarding than simply getting ahead. Climbing a mountain is a great accomplishment; even if you do it alone you still need someone to tell the story to. The measure of success is not how much we have or know, but how we enjoy it with those around us. Please share your thoughts on the topic, or simply what the quote meant to you.