Archie and If have brought to the surface some poignant issues. . .issues
that I find myself wrestling with every day.
>Those who are wealthy (in knowledge, experience, money, property,
> investments, whatever) will be able to survive. Those who are poor
> (non-wealthy) will continue to rely on society to provide. I do agree that
> the pursuit of wealth is critical, not for the end result however. It is
> critical to lead individuals to their greatness.
To which If replies:
> To them that have [under the extant set of self-evident truths/ values/
> patterns/ beliefs/ accrueth more?
> To them that have not- what ?
> I recall an English Writer, C.P. Snow comparing to religions, one a
> 'gentle heresy' that flourished and perished in some briefly blooming
> middle eastern civilization the other Christianity which "sprang from mind
> to mind like fire among the hopelessly dispossed of the Roman slums" - or
> words to that effect.
> Your words describe a reality of our society, yet one that haunts me,
> because I sense the same dynamic having been played out many times in
> the past with revoluions and suffering every time the balance shifted or, as
> I understand the Chinese tradition held 'The mandate of heaven' moved.
> Does it have to be that way? Does it matter?
And here's my viewpoint:
My wife and I have deliberately lived in a lower income area since our
marriage. At first we had no choice, we we're broke. Now we could afford
to live in the much nicer neighborhood, but we don't. There's not been
much thinking behind this, other than a feeling in my heart that the
people with whom we live "need us."
Now I view the deliberate segregation of the rich and the poor as
destructive to society. I perceive that the "poor" need living models of
success which they can emulate. Unfortunately, as soon as one of their
numbers becomes successful they move away, taking with them their "secrets
Now the issue gets complicated. I believe that all people have inherent
greatness, even if it is dormant. I suppose I subscribe to McGregor's
Theory Y. . .except that when I talk to many of my neighbors about
personal growth, and about how they could creatively live their life and
achieve their dreams I get a blank stare. They literally don't believe
what I'm telling them. Some of them act as if their afraid of their
greatness, and the responsibility they feel it would lay upon them. Others
seem to believe there is no possible way they could any greatness within
their souls (many of these people are devout Christians, which I find
ironic because the Bible clearly states that man can "put on the divine
nature" and that definitely implies greatness!)
I have yet to find a way to effectively help other people see themselves
as something unique, wonderful, powerful, noble, and dignified.
Subsequently they voluntarily live in the shadow of their greatness. .
.always thinking that their greatness is just out of reach, or worse,
I believe that the pursuit of wealth is an important component to
discovering one's greatness, but it is insufficient. One has to believe
that there is greatness down in the soul waiting to be discovered. To
answer the question: Does mankind have to live with cataclysmic changes in
the economy as the pendulum swings back and forth between socialism and
capitalism? No! But mankind has to come to know him/herself before we can
make any noteworthy progress.
I see this same type of behavior, on a slightly higher scale, within most
corporations. Most people struggle to believe there is something noble
within just waiting, perhaps begging, to be expressed! How tragic! This
leads me to believe there is some validity to Theory X, but the thought
frightens me, as it gives credence to Plato's theory that society should
be governed by a Philosopher King! And such a notion I cannot accept.
Benjamin B. Compton ("Ben") | email: email@example.com Novell GroupWare Technical Engineer | fax: (801) 222-6991
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