Lesson: Remember leaders are human too.
Over the years I have seen many things come and go. Many people come and go. Many ideologies come and go.
People in leadership whom I have held with great respect in the past I now see, not with bitterness, as fallen, fallible or in some cases fake.
I have learned that all leaders are human and not entirely pure in motive, while some are, without a doubt, wolves in sheep’s clothing and dangerous.
Yes, have respect for the office that people hold, but do not hold the people in those positions as something other than an ordinary person with a job to do.
I have also learned not to be swayed or manipulated by the fame or popularity of any individual, the glitterati are human too.
Paul S Allen
singer/songwriter, acoustic guitarist, performer, photographer, and poet.
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I am deeply saddened by the news that 49 people in Orlando Florida in the USA, have been murdered in cold blood and that 53 others have been wounded in this latest horrific incident.
These murderous attacks are happening across the planet killing many, many people. More often than not, the targets are innocent people going about normal everyday activities.
The hate and the killing must stop!
No one should die because they have different belief structures, or are different in any way from another person.
Let us forget forever the name of the Orlando murderer, banish it to the loneliest unmarked grave, without honour or epitaph. Do not show his picture and do not give coverage to his extreme and twisted personal misinterprtations of a particular religion.
But more than that…
Let us all learn to truly accept people and respect them as they are regardless of their faith or non-faith, gender association, sexual orientation, skin colour, ethnic origin etc.
Although not an excuse, our problem is that we can only see through the eyes we have, and they are biased, due to our personal experiences and what we have been taught or modelled. However change is possible for all of us, but only if we are willing to start.
We must always search for better ways, always question entrenched ideologies, always ask for help if you need it, and offer it where you are able.
- We need to start to see the person, the humanity, within each individual and respect them as they are;
- We need to stop labelling and putting people in boxes that make it easier for us to dismiss others as different or inferior;
- We need to remember that the blood in all our veins runs red, that we breathe the same air, and that this tiny little rock floating in space that we share is our only home.
It is a bold, courageous and glorious goal to love everybody and it is not easy, but even a small step in the direction of love is a good start. The trick is, when you start the journey, keep moving.
We must remember that this is a journey and
- We are all at varying stages along the way,
- We are not perfect,
- We are broken,
- We can’t do it alone,
- We need help,
- We need patience with others on the journey.
May be, just may be, if we all take a small step towards love and peace the world will be a better place.
Paul S Allen
Sometimes, in all our lives, we will all fall off the wave.
The wave is a metaphor and it will mean different things for people and at different stages of our lives. It could be a particular skill, a career, anything. You are a student of life, constantly developing and growing (whether you know it or not).
Being a student means to try things beyond your known ability, this will lead to you making mistakes or not succeeding at times. You need to develop strength and new skills. One day you will succeed, you can become an expert and yes, even then you will make mistakes and fail at times.
Failure is not the end, don’t give up, don’t take it personally, learn from your experience.
The lesson from this surfer is you just try again. (here was his next wave)
All people have the right to live in peace and safety without persecution, oppression, victimisation or death.
It does not matter about differences as long as we can mutually respect each other.
We need to embrace diversity not fear it.
Let us look beyond nationality, race, religion, gender or orientation, and respect the person. Listen to each others stories without judgement or condemnation.
We, the free, need to stand up for the oppressed and the persecuted and let their voices be heard.
Let us free the oppressed.
Let us see the humanity.
Let us love the person.
Let there be peace.
Graphics created by Paul S Allen
©Paul S Allen 2014
What is a community?
Community is a group of people who have some form of relationship with each other or share a commonality of some description or another. Communities are as infinitely varied as the people who are part of them.
Communities can be very informal or strictly formal associations.
Communities exist for as many reasons as there are people on earth. They can be skill based, task orientated, faith/religion/church based, non-faith, political, secular, work related, geographic, ethnic, gender, sexuality, or age based, anything at all.
There should never be an assumption of a unified reason that a community exists, as you can never know the true intentions of all the participants.
The best you can hope for is that everyone, or at least most, will have enough shared intent to work together for a stated outcome.
It is always good to be reminded that where there are people, there will always be politics and there will always be at least one person who will assume, or usurp, control or power.
People do good for many reasons, some reasons are selfless and some selfish, for many it is a combination at one level or another. None of us have 100% pure motives for everything we do.
Why assume community organisations do?
Never blindly follow a “leader”, always be willing to question and act on the answers you get. I have said before, “People who blindly follow a leader, political ideology, belief or value system without questioning, are fooling themselves with a false sense of security.” (Think – your country needs it)
Do not let this stop you from getting involved in your community, the only assurance is that change can only happen if people are willing to get involved, what ever the reason.
All you can do is work on your own motives for getting involved in community.
Paul S Allen