With such divisions in our society, what can help us make sense of it and bring us together?
WASHINGTON, DC, USA, January 21, 2021 /EINPresswire.com/ — Recently, the conflict between persons of differing political and social views erupted in Washington, DC, from social demonstration into violence, criminal conduct, and even death.
No one who believes in the U.S. Constitution would deny citizens the right to express their views and to demonstrate publicly in support of them.
But when passions are inflamed by false statements from the right, the left, or just from persons of ill will who rejoice in conflict and destruction, then the urge to state one’s views can be twisted into actions to violate the law, to hurt others, even those whose job it is to protect the peace and the government.
When persons of ill will take these steps, it reflects badly upon those who only wanted to express a view, a belief. The broad public and persons hearing about this, condemn criminal actions that destabilize government and social institutions.
But it is time to reflect. It is time to consider what might reduce the temperature of the conflict, bring persons who are speaking with hate to start perhaps listening to the other side, to consider altering one’s own viewpoint and actions before attacking others for theirs.
Easier said than done, history shows. On the other hand, there are social tools and actions that have factually demonstrated they can cool the violent temper, smooth out the turbulent tempest. Really? Yes, really.
Colombia, for example, some years ago, was suffering widespread violence and warring acts by guerrilla bands, all of which destabilized the government and civil institutions. Worse, it produced a welcome climate for the drug cartels to expand. Then their wars between themselves further destabilized the government. Fighting violence with violence simply escalated the conflict and worsened the problem.
Then persons of goodwill introduced the use of a powerful but simple booklet containing maxims of conduct and thought that can lead toward a more ethical, peaceful, happier life. It was The Way to Happiness, by author and humanitarian, L. Ron Hubbard. The small book contains 21 precepts* that a person can follow themselves or, equally importantly, suggest to others to follow. Educating willing and interested persons in the military, the police, and the government, they saw that this could help their staff and persons affected by their staff – the people at large. Through voluntary donations, hundreds of thousands of The Way to Happiness booklets were distributed and lectures and seminars broadly disseminated, eventually, to a remarkable 3 million citizens. This social campaign contributed to other ongoing national and international actions to broker peace and calm tensions.
How could this work? How could it be applied in Washington, DC, or across the United States today? Firstly, the booklet itself is now available online. Persons interested can download the e-book without charge.
What, one may ask, is said inside this little book that might apply to persons screaming at one another across streets, or across the internet? Here are just a few relevant quotes, not just for now, but for any time:
Precept 20 is “Try to treat others as you would want them to treat you.” This is a rewording of the Golden Rule. This is something you can do. It is active, not passive. Meaningfully, the chapter goes on to talk about how. For example, “One is treated pretty much the way he treats others: one actually sets an example of how he should be treated.” In other words, if you want the other side to stop hollering and listen to you, stop hollering yourself and start listening to others.
A slightly more extensive quote from Precept 20 is: “The human virtues have little to do with gloominess. They are the bright face of life itself. Now what do you suppose would happen if one were to try to treat those around him with justness, loyalty, good sportsmanship, fairness, honesty, kindness, consideration, compassion, self-control, tolerance, forgivingness, benevolence, belief, respect, politeness, dignity, admiration, friendliness, love, and did it with integrity?”
Yes, that’s saying a lot. But, honestly, reader, if you or any of us practiced any one of those human virtues, or one a day, would the world around us not change? Try it and find out. What could you lose? More to the point, what might be there to gain?
For more information about The Way to Happiness go to www.thewaytohappiness.org.
* Precepts: Rules or statements advising or laying down a principle or principles or a course of action regarding conduct; directions meant as a rule or rules for conduct.
Rev. Susan Taylor
Church of Scientology National Affairs Office
email us here
Source: EIN Presswire