(Politics and the Human Spirit – Installment 11)
The previous article reflected on how the rough edge of our carnal self (our savage side) might be softened and polished by the divine spark, or ethereal self, shining deep within us (our noble side).
The more work we do within ourselves to nurture our ethereal self (for example, heart meditation and prayer), the more polishing gets done on the outside.
So let’s consider how our noble-savage nature boils over into our nested groups and affects the management of human affairs…
- individuals in families and friendships and schools…
- families within neighborhoods and religious congregations…
- neighborhoods within communities…
- communities and businesses within states, provinces, or cantons…
- within nations…
- all within the human species.
Most of us want to feel safe and secure in our groups, but we know from experience that they’re imperfect. A human group is like a big, lumbering person with all of the collective noble-savage qualities of its members… so the group doesn’t always work in the best interests of its members.
So we never fully trust the groups we belong to.
- Kids like to feel safe in the bosom of the family but rebel against family-imposed chores and curfews that seem unreasonable.
- Patriots rally around the flag but complain about intrusive government and taxes.
- Businesses and industries utilize the nation’s infrastructure (like the sprawling web of transportation and communication networks) while bristling against the taxation and regulation that help keep it peaceful, orderly, and vital.
At all levels of society, fickle humans and fickle groups make management a big challenge.
In the personality of every group, along with the trust… there’s cynicism. With the kindness… malice. With the wisdom… superstition and delusion. With the love… fear and hate. With the generosity… greed. With the self-esteem… shame. With the humility… conceit.
Such is the dual nature of any human group, whether it’s an army or a religion… whether a family or a corporation… whether a football team or a meditation group. Humanity is a mixed bag.
Granted, some groups by definition lean more toward the noble and others more toward the savage, but whenever humans are involved there’s always a blending of the carnal and the divine. It goes with the human turf.
When we think about all the decision-making that goes on within all the groups at all the levels of human society, it’s mind-boggling to try to come up with principles of peace and well-being and good management that would apply in every situation.
I can think of only one:
When we acknowledge our divine core as the only reality, and our worldly problems and suffering and preoccupations as illusion, then our noble side shines through more brightly and enlightens human society. We find greater peace within us as peace spreads around us. The savage side begins to retreat.
So, if there’s one political panacea that can be spread through human society like a healing salve, that’s it:
Embrace the divine!
(to be continued….)
Politics and the Human Spirit series:
1 Introduction 2 Privatization and the public good 3 Military 4 Information 5 Spirit of Society 6 Education 7 Regulation 8 Economics 9 Managing the World in the 21st Century – 10 The carnal line between noble and savage – 11 Embrace the divine; it’s where we shine – 12 Who decides what? – 13 Finally… good politics
Best and worst countries to be born – Election fraud 2012 – Best and worst US presidents – Humor in politics – Biggest political news – End of the American dream – Blown to bits in the computer age – Standards, the key to peace – What Obama and Stalin really have in common – Bad counsel and a short leash – Capital punishment & the human spirit