Sunday, 22 November 2020

Thought Picnic: We lose when we have none to question us

Who can speak to you?

I think of this a lot, the danger of primacy, the curse of being at the pinnacle of power and authority with a court, courtiers, or acolytes who pledge fealty and extraordinarily little truthfulness and honestly.

More and more, I realise than a man needs to be answerable to another man, it behoves us to surround ourselves with people who can challenge us, question our motives, withstand our opinions and persuade us of alternatives in direction and decision. At the very least, if we are not to be dissuaded, we should be able to defend our positions with conviction, courage, and truth.

No place is lonelier than to be where you are out of the reach of checks and balances. Where reality is bent to your will and none that see you can say what needs to be said to bring a sense of reflection and ground one in the incontrovertible essences of existence, that power is transient, life is not immortal, and deeds with their consequences are rarely forgotten.

Honest counsel is more than gold

Through history into the present day, you wonder what better decisions to change the course of history might have been visited if kings and queens long gone were better advised, generals and leaders did not rule with terror and an iron fist that even the truth was trammelled and out of reach in their counsel and counselling, if my own father was subject to the scrutiny of some of decisions and actions.

Yes, these thoughts occupy my mind when it comes to myself, the things I have done that with better insight and advice with counsel, direction and mentoring might have saved me from the foolishness and stupidity of my ways. Yes, much as it can be bruising, I desire friends and partners that will be honest and unrelenting in their engagement to make a better person. I will deploy my wiles and caprices, but they can and do put a mirror up before me that I can see myself clearly.

Seek to listen to glisten

We would normally say, we are our own greatest critic, that is good, but have people around you who can critique rather than criticise, who can appreciate with all its caveats, yet not excoriate. We need iron to sharpen iron, the forge to heat the iron, the anvil to shape the iron, none of which in its processing is easy work, but the result is a fine tool or instrument for the task in hand.

I know I have such friends; I ensure that my ears are not clogged with earwax so I can hear and listen, understand and comprehend, working towards a better representation of myself. I hope also that I am equipped, courageous, able and persuaded to offer the same to help my friends be the best they can ever be, either in giving them the assurance they need or the persuasion that is required. 

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