Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Fittest, the clouds & the truth

Survival of the fittest is often met with scorn, ridicule and a general feeling of contempt for the person who believes in the concept. Survival of the fittest is generally used to describe the fact that the strongest, most resourceful animals and humans survive when other mammals don't.
There are some people, especially in the political environment who criticize and often times criminalize businesses for operating under the old survival of the fittest mantra. They say that these CEOs only care about the bottom line and they get rich "off the backs" of their employees.
Now, I do not support sub-standard working conditions, or discrimination of any ethnic group or sexual orientation. However, what I do support is a business doing what it needs to do, short of scamming their customers and employees, in order to keep it's business running and it's employees employed. And if that involves operating under the concept of survival of the fittest than that's fine too.
What frustrates me about people who demonize the concept of survival of the fittest is that we all have been operating under survival of the fittest our whole lives and continue to operate under this premise. Regardless of our feelings about it survival of the fittest is here to stay. Call it human nature, call it natural order of things. I call it logic.
If a business was not balancing its accounts at the end of each month, or if, for instance, a business in Downtown Danville, Il, where I live, wasn't marketing itself well enough to attract customers than those businesses will fail. There's no question of whether they should fail or not, they are going to fail. That's simply how things work.
And while it seems a little harsh to say this, it works the same way with individuals. If you aren't balancing your checkbook each month or presenting yourself well enough at a job interview you will have less money and in turn won't be able to buy the things you need or want. It's not rocket science.
And this brings me to being Sane & Satisfied. We are told every day that it's a travesty of our time that there are still hungry and homeless people on the streets. Some people even tell us that this is caused by the rich and powerful. If by that, they meant that we all effect each other from the poorest to the richest, then I would agree. But they really mean that it's all the rich people's fault. The problem with this is that because so many people believe this argument they approach the solution from this angle. Most solutions I hear are directed toward taking money from the rich people in our country. And because these people also believe that the poor are having things taken from them they think that solution is to just give it back (in the form of government handouts, food and public housing.)
So many times we don't define the problem well enough and that results in our solutions not doing what we expect them to do.
Let's get away from politics for a moment and journey into the land of self help. This is an industry that thrives on not defining the problem well enough. They tell us that the problem is that we are not who we want to be. And maybe on some level that's accurate. But they never seem to tell us that maybe the person who we are is exactly who we are supposed to be. The problem is that society doesn't like certain types of people.
Take me for example. I am a very outgoing and opinionated person. I'm not afraid of conflict, in fact, I believe that conflict is necessary for growth. I also stick up for my actions even when people are telling me I should apologize. These traits were not praised in school, they were not praised among my friends and they are certainly not praised in main stream media or in political and social discussions.
I built up a lot of stress when I tried to conform to how society told me I should behave. This is actually the only conflict I don't condone. Being in conflict with others can help us all grow and learn more about ourselves. Being in conflict with ourselves only leads to frustration, anger, confusion, depression and general unhappiness.
Part of being Sane & Satisfied is defining your problems and barriers accurately. So often everyone else's voice and opinion gets in the way and clouds things. Much like the ongoing discussion about poverty and big business has been clouded and skewed your perception of yourself and your hurdles is probably skewed too.
I truly believe that as soon as we are able to look at poverty through the lens of truth and logic we will find that or solutions toward poverty succeed. I also believe that as soon as we all are able to look at ourselves and our own problems through the lens of truth we will finally find sanity and satisfaction. This will give us the greatest advantage to surviving.

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