I finally went to see Avatar yesterday. I enjoyed the movie, the special effects were awesome. The acting and casting were good. The story line however, frustrated me. As I sat through the movie I couldn’t help but think of Pocahontas, The Lions King and Titanic (I guess it was the music score at some points). Why was this frustrating? Because it’s the same old story. Corporate greed run amuck. The local natives getting run over, then responding with violence of their own to win their freedom. While I know James Cameron’s intention was to make a lot of money himself, I was disappointed that he wasn’t able to use the grand stage as the best grossing film ever, to help us make a change. Is this man’s legacy? To continually fight each other to get what we want?
My most widely read post by far is about Coercive Power. It seems that people run into this ALL the time. Why. Because I guess it is reality. Man is by nature territorial and greedy, much like the rest of the animal kingdom. I was listening to National Public Radio (NPR) the other day as they ran a program about a pack of wolves that roamed near Druid Peak in Yellowstone. The pack that had lived there for years, was overrun by a new pack of wolves and the old timers were killed. I thought of this as I watched Avatar, that man is much like a pack of wolves.
There is so much conflict in the world. Right vs. Left, Muslims vs. Christians, Muslims vs. Jews, Christians vs. Jews, Jews vs. Christians, Corporations vs. Environmentalists, West vs. East, White vs. Black, Black vs. Yellow, Yellow vs. White, Boys vs. Girls, Men vs. Women, Straits vs. Gays, Wealthy vs. Poverty Stricken, First world vs. Third world, Global warming advocates vs. Conservatives, Conservatives vs. Liberals, Shiite vs. Sunni, Protestants vs. Catholics, Protestants vs. Protestants, China vs. Tibet, China vs. Taiwan, West vs. Iran, West vs. Korea, LA Lakers vs. Sacramento Kings, Green Bay vs. Minnesota (had to throw these in)… I could go on, but you get the idea.
I know. Pretty depressing. Before you jump off a cliff, ask yourself, how did man ever get to the point where we are now, despite being such a carnal creature inclined to compete for anything and everything? The answer… while we are such things, we are also different. I don’t know why, but we are.
There is something inherent in the human spirit that allows us to be compassionate. To look after our fellow man. This is why leadership development and education are so important. As the world grows in population and resources become scarce, our only hope is to learn to overcome our human nature.
When the nature of man overcomes man’s human nature… When men and women rise above our animal like nature, we will thrive.
To accomplish this, we are going to need to rethink our story… our past… and our future. We need to stop thinking in terms of Us vs Them. We need people in positions of leadership to stop thinking about themselves, and to focus on what’s good for everyone. Not just themselves. Not just their constituents, but for everyone.
It is people like you who come and search for ways to become better leaders, to help educate and grow others, that will be the core of our survival.
You must continue the fight….
All the best!
All the time!