Do you know or remember the Aesop’s fable about the lion and the mouse? If you don’t, may I suggest you find and read it? As individuals and a society we must understand how power works, to use power effectively. Otherwise thinking you’re using it, you end up its victim and, or, victimizing everyone within your sphere of influence.
I don’t know how many business teams I’ve worked with where the person in power thought everything was fine and the majority of the team thought there were serious dysfunctions.
When I’ve worked in family systems I see a similar dynamic whoever has the power seems to have a harder time listening to what everyone else has to say, as if power was knowledge or omnipotence. Seems we get very confused about that distinction, to the detriment of everyone in the system and the society at large.
What if the missionaries had been as interested in what the other cultures knew, as they were in teaching what they thought was right? What if they had been as interested in learning, as they were certain of their ideas? It may be to cover over the hidden fear that our beliefs are not quite right, which produces that kind of dogmatic treatment of others, often in the form of violence. What if they been as open to wondering and questioning, as they were dogmatic and imposing? How the world might be different?
Really who wants an orchestra of all the same instrument. It’s more than okay that we differ, like an orchestra plays different parts on different instruments, together. Picture a world where people with different beliefs or political views tried to understand why someone else might feel the way they do, instead of either being threatened or denigrating another rather than truly hearing their thoughts.
Please, think about it for a minute. Do you really believe that everyone who holds a different political view or different religious belief is stupid? Do you not think that there are brilliant people among the most varied systems of thought, including ones you are sure are as wrong as they are that your beliefs are wrong?
Intelligence alone does not guarantee truth. Truth thrives in a spirit of open-mindedness, a willingness to listen, a willingness to learn!
When one individual, reactively starts to denigrate another individual, instead of trying to understand the problem and solve it, that is the definition of sin. When we value our beliefs over hearing the truth, isn’t that the road to hell?
Think about the difference between a team with a boss who is closed and dogmatic, versus a team were everyone’s input is considered in an open mindset. Maybe we can’t say which one will produce the best company, the best family, the best culture, the best society and the best world, but I would guess I could guess which one you would rather live in. And for myself, I know for certain.