Perhaps one of the most defining human characteristics is how we learn from our mistakes and pass the benefits on to others. We tend to think of this as developing our civilisations and cultures, but there’s a larger story asking, “Who are we becoming?”
If we step back to take a larger view of our world, we see how, whilst we’ve taken a more cerebral and metaphysical way of development, in the East there has been a greater concern for harmony (Yin Yang) and in the South it has been solidarity (Ubuntu).
We might even conject that there are at least three different kinds of human in the world.
Perhaps we can also see our future: cerebral, harmonious, and connected humans nurturing the Earth for the good of all flora and fauna.
‘The concern in Tibetan Bhuddism is not to achieve a conceptually perfect answer, which then has to be defended, but to call forth a happy, loving, aware, and perceptive human being.’*
In Bhutan, the government has been concerned to not only measure the output of their country by gross national product alone, but also by gross national happiness. Someone I know is part of a group reading Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project, so I thought I thought I’d pick up a copy and join the conversation.
If this sounds a little strange, it’s more about how we’ve been brought up within our particular culture than it being plain weird, and therefore discounted.
Every day provides us with this opportunity to try a new path, combining and increasing reflection and action and community in our lives
(*From Richard Rohr’s The Naked Now.)