Being the best that
we can be, should be the goal of all people. Often times we complain about the
status quo, but rarely offer solutions to correct the problems that plague our
society, as well as our social interactions. As we move into the new millennia, the fundamental question that should be on
all of our minds, is what type of society do we want to live in?; one which will
serve most of the needs of all the people, or one which will serve all the needs
of some of the people.
In asking such a question, we begin the ball of conscious action on its path
toward understanding. As we evolve, it soon becomes apparent that, it's more
important to address the root of a problem, than looking with awe at its
manifestation. Remember, an ounce of prevention, is worth a pound of cure. For
instance, you can't rid a lawn of dandelions by simply mowing the grass, you
must eradicate them at the root in order to prohibit their perennial return.
Given that critical analysis is essential for the examination of situations,
one must first understand the foundation upon which the manifested problem
rests. Once the source of the problem is realized, those wishing to honestly
work toward a solution, will have a better idea as to the most effective course
of action to pursue.
In our attempts to be the best that we can be, it is important to recognize
our strengths, and work on weaknesses. Was it not Shakespeare who said, "to
thine own self be true?" If we are going to erect a society that has at its core
the essence of humane behavior, then we must first deal with ourselves in a
humane fashion. After all, being "true" to ourselves will only make it easier to
proceed to the next level of human development.
For it logically follows, that if we love and respect our selves, then it
will be less encumbering to love and respect our fellow woman or man. Thereby
creating a society that encompass positive implications for the future.
Here stands a challenge to all; seek to determine your strengths and
weaknesses, work honestly on them in order to bring your weaknesses closer to
the strength side of the equation, then seek to assist others in their quest to
become better human beings.
Recognizing, that your attempts to be dis-ingenuous with yourself will not
produce the desired effect, it is vitally important that you not shy away from
what you discover about yourself - good, bad, and ugly. For just as you cannot
have fresh growth without breaking up fallow ground, you cannot expect this
process to be painless. It should, and will be painful. Yet, the sensation of
pain will produce the opportunity to experience, learn, and remember. Oddly
enough, this "trinity of life" provides the foundation upon which a more humane
society can be based, thereby causing us to be the best that we can be.
Column originally published in
Signal (Georgia State University's student newspaper) 14 January