Unless I live to over 120 I am now well over halfway through my life. The reality of our mortality is never very far way, and sometimes life events or those of our friends can bring this into sharp focus, sometimes very very sharp – and painful to behold.
Humankind never ceases to surprise. Perhaps it has all got to a point in my own experience where this really shouldn’t any more. But should cynicism rule?
At the very best we can be capable of such inspirational achievements that it’s pure joy to witness. Acts of selflessness, sacrifice, love, graciousness, empathy and kindness not only to other humans but to the creatures and life forms with which we share this spaceship earth. And until we do invent the interstellar drive it will continue to be the only one we’ve got for many generations yet. Irrespective of what we do to it and those we share it with.
In stark contrast we can plumb the very depths of darkness committing acts of violence, sheer destruction, unspeakable cruelty to living beings, whether they be two, four, many legged or none and many others.
Everyone has their reasons to rationalise their behaviour, whether it is the shafting of employees for “business reasons” or violence against those who are powerless to respond.
I wonder what our future as the human race will be. Most films about the future show a disfunctional dystopia, with the earth ravaged by terror, greed or the fires of atomic destruction. There are few happy endings to be seen. I wonder how true this will be?
Fire can purify but also can destroy. Now and then we go through the challenges of life, like fire, burning away those things that hold us back or down , and setting us free to rise like the fabled phoenix from the seeming ashes to be stronger, bolder, brighter, and fly higher than ever before. But always at considerable cost.
It is said that the Conquistador Cortez when invading Mexico, burned his fleet to motivate his troops in their battles. No going back then, no plan B, fight or die!
In business it is also said to not burn your bridges. Meaning not to sever relationships whatever the provocation, because you never know what’s around the corner or who you might meet. Such a British stiff upper lip concept! Ours is a notoriously small industry even now, and quite often the musical chairs that takes place often results in the same people wearing different hats in a different organisation.
Over my 40 odd years of career. I remember those that have helped, those that stood by and those that wielded the knife. There are a few I would gladly make an exception for!
And whilst my career has taken some odd twists and turns of late, I think for me and hopefully for us all, don’t give in! Refuse and reject the cynicism. Let’s be the best we can be and shine our light into those dark places.
It is easy to become hardened, calcified, ossified even in our ways and thinking. Deadened to the relentless crap our world generates on a daily basis. It is easy to rationalise and say, I’m one person, or we’re a small group, what can we do? And this isn’t just an industry thing, society at large needs people who will stand in that place. Who will call out those that are out of line, and stand up for those people and creatures that cannot speak for themselves.
Sometimes the human race literally sickens me. Sometimes it’s truly inspiring.
Where do you stand?
Let’s get serious.