"There are two great forces of human nature......self-interest and caring for others", according to Bill Gates.
If true, then:
(1) What is the approximate balance between the two today - in individuals, organisations and societies? How much time do we really spend thinking about and then acting on other people's needs?
(2) How can we start an open and ongoing debate about what the balance should be - next year, in 2030 etc? If we don't do this, then how can individuals really know how to lead a "good" life, can organisations know what their wider responsibilities really are and can societies really know how to develop fair policies for all?
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Imagining not allowing our "projections" to hold us back, as argued in this thoughtful piece? The idea that we are often very wrong in the assumptions we make about what other people are thinking and feeling strikes a chord. Is there a word for "false empathy" - i.e. for trying to put ourself into the other's shoes, but coming to completely wrong conclusions? Maybe we'd benefit from "cognitive reframing".
So often we seem to impute to others far worse feelings and motives than we subsequently learn were really there, and often isn't the truth that the other person was focused on his/her own problems and, far than condemning us, was probably not thinking about us at all? Even if/when they were, what harm does it really do us?
...Aloud". Relative latecomer, perfect and tiny; seeping into my senses in my imperfect and tiny Mini arriving at the tennis club during the summer of 1986, just before calm convention came fat, content and unexpectedly into view on the horizon, arrived and stayed.
Grown ever deeper roots down the years. Wistful rather than yearning. Moment(s) in time. Ultimate line is the ultimate line, and, I'm living it a little more - if not outwardly every day yet as I should - then steadily and a little more nonetheless, for which I'm grateful...
Ode argued compellingly that marking time with natural rhythms and seasons can grow compassion and commitment to all life. The underlying wistfulness and enhanced "sensitivity to the passage of the seasons" is embodied in the likes of Monty Don, who combines a kanyini-like love for the soil and place, with a sense of gratitude that seems to come "from the other side of sorrow and despair".
This paper is an evolving examination of issues around, and responses to, the challenge or improving the lives of and caring for elders, on the emotional, mental, physical, practical, spiritual levels.
During these dark days of worsening refugee crises, can we still imagine reaching a state of "xenophilia"...overcoming our "homophily", i.e. the love of that which is like us, and reaching the love of that which is different?
Indeed, if we're ever going to care enough about conflict, genocide, poverty, hunger etc. enough to act on them properly, then we need to try much harder to avoid conflict with people we might not yet fully understand.