Divided We Fail

November 3, 2008 at 6:19 am Leave a comment

Divided We Fail  Lauren Kennedy http://www.InsitetoExcellence.com

There’s a commercial that always bring a tear of joy to my eye.The tear is quickly followed by feelings of sadness and confusion.

The commercial depicts a foot race. The contenders are mentally or physically disadvantaged children.  One child falls. Another child turns around to check that he is not hurt.  Soon, the other children follow suit. Then they all join arms and run across the finish line together.

I am certain that millions of viewers are also touched by this image. So the question becomes, why don’t we  emulate this behavior?

Have we become so cynical that, although the image is heart warming, we consider it an idealistic fantasy. Or do we value  the self satisfaction of winning,  success  and importance more than the fulfillment of cooperation and harmony?

Sure, we give  lip service to peace and unity.  But we remain obsessed with winning, rather than with the thrill of the game. We strive to be recognized as the best, rather than appreciate excellence in our efforts .We seek to achieve importance and recognition so we can wield our influence and power, forfeiting the close emotional bonds, appreciation and value for who we are, and the fulfillment of contribution,  that result from cooperation and tolerance.

As we view someone performing a selfless act of compassion, ti may evoke a sense of admiration in us. But it is the successful, the wealthy, the powerful, the important people that we respect, that we follow, that we believe possess superior qualities of wisdom, leadership and character. And if wealth and success were achieved through dishonesty, callousness or manipulation, we dismiss or justify or refuse to believe.

We may give a medal for an act of compassion, but we give our respect and our minds to the successful.

I saw a documentary about a man, the wealthiest in the state, being found innocent of first murder, then attempted murder in spite of a preponderance of evidence against him. During his trial, he gave himself a birthday party which was attended by police officials, government leaders and a host of admirers.

The perception seemed to be that such a successful individual couldn’t be guilty of such behavior. Or their desire to acquire some of that importance for themselves through association meant more than how he came by it or his behavior after he had it.

We too, can turn around as the rest of the children did and join forces with the compassionate to give a hand to the struggling. We  too, can join arms and experience a win for all. Or we can pass by the fallen, leaving them stranded, motivated only by our single minded desire or obsessed by our consuming fears or failure and lack,  to grab our own success and importance.

As long as we condone the notion that the only way to succeed is on the backs of others, compassion,  cooperation and mutual success will indeed remain a fairy tale.

But the choice, as always, is our own.

Entry filed under: Feelings and Emotions. Tags: , , , , .

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Our life is an evolving creation, shaped by our choices, colored by our desires, and lightened or darkened by our intentions.
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