Thursday, January 28, 2016

Treating Each Other As Human Family (in progress)

If we're going to create a world that we want to live in, we need to go beyond what we already know. We need to dream of what we want - how we want to be treated - how we want people to treat each other. Then we need to finds way to walk progressively into that dream until it becomes real for us and others - one step at a time.

To do that we have to look beyond the conventional business values that are designed to maximize profit, efficiency and material wealth.  In this paradigm, human beings and human relationships are expendible as a means to an end.  We are not inherently valuable as an end in and of ourselves. Neither are the communities we live in or the natural resources upon which we all depend to survive. 

This value system is fundamentally flawed.  It will never lead to a world in which human beings feel safe and secure - in either persons or property.  Think about it.  Who trusts Wall Street to act in the interests of communities at large?  

To the contrary, modern business has evolved largely to take advantage of - even exploit - human needs and vulnerabilities. Its priority is not to advance community well-being or development.  It is headed in the opposite direction of securing private interests irrespective of the needs of the public at large. 

We also need to get beyond the liability oriented legal system.  The fact of the matter is that lawyers and the court system are ill-qualified to set the standards for how human beings treat each other to lawyers and the court system.  In the first place, the legal system has evolved in an effort to protect people from the worst of human nature - and it does a fairly unsatisfactory job at that.  Even more pointedly, who consults their lawyer to improve their relational satisfaction? 

Suffice it to say, we need to forge some new ground.  We need to develop a new ethic of human relations.  We need to go beyond the standards set by business and courts. We must get beyond the dominant culture attitudes that define and limit our value as human beings.  There is more - much much more - to human existence than our capacity to compete in the business world or to attract a mate who can.  

We must stop letting ourselves - and our value - be defined in these terms. No less important, we must stop letting healthcare and mental health professionals pathologize us for these so-called failings.  

These are not failings.  The resilience and creativity of human kind is linked to our diversity.  Collectively, as a species, we possess widely varied capacities, values, priorities, beliefs, attitudes, sensations,  - even mental states and frames of mind. Not all of these capacities work well in the marketplace. Much of what is makes life worth living is not quantifiable. Even worse, when you try to sell this kind of thing (e.g., love and caring and loyalty),  you lose its essential quality or degrade it beyond measure.  

We have not even begun to mine the potential riches among us.  We need to start.  Right now.  Because every single one of them has a rightful place.  Every single one of us has a valued contribution to make.  

This is a space where we can do that.  This is about community. Here, we offer our humanity. Our ethic is to honor human each other as human beings.  We do our best to create a relationships and world that feels like human family and advances rights. 

For us there no higher law. We acknowledge nothing that conflicts with this. 

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