Monday, May 22, 2017

The Power to Imagine Better

If we’re going to use our imaginations, then perhaps we should imagine better.  Mankind’s mind is an amazingly powerful creation.  Look at all we have done, especially in the last thirty years: computers in our pockets, smart phones, tracking devices, electric cars, medical miracles and a thousand more.

And yet, there is more to be done, more imaginings that will transpire over the next ten years.  It boggles the mind. 

And are we better for it all?  Have we imagined better ways of engaging with the human beings around us?  We can send men and women into space, build space stations and populate them with scientist and astronauts from other parts of the globe and they can get along cooperatively for months at a time, yet I can vote for someone different from my long-time friend and get slammed for “uninformed thinking” and “you must be a nut-bag to follow that man or woman.”

Perhaps it is time to begin putting our grand imaginations to work on the human relationship condition.  We are better than a lot of what I see on social media.  We don’t attack just because of different opinions.  We don’t condemn and ‘send to hell’ everyone on the opposite side of our stance on any given topic. 

We have it in our power to imagine better.  We can work these issues to a better solution.  And either we do, or we go deeper into the divide of our world.  And what is it that Abraham Lincoln said? 

That fits us today.

With today’s technological advances and smart people in our land, we have to change the wording on this a bit.  You know where I’m going –

A WORLD divided 
against itself 
cannot stand.”

Men and women in government, whether city, county, state, US or foreign kingdoms, we need your best imaginations. 

We need your best statesmanship, your best integrity, your best unbiased thinking.  We can no longer afford political posturing, positional thinking, and party-line loyalties.  The party has now become mankind.  We the people, all of us, red, black, white, brown, Asian, Russian, Tennesseans, Afrikaners, Ethiopians, and all the rest of us … we are the party.  We are the ones who matter.  We all suffer at the hand of wrong thinking, and we all gain when we manage to imagine better.

I’ll let J K Rowling sum up these thoughts.  They are taken from her speech to the graduating class at Harvard, September 15, 2011.

“We do not need magic 
to transform our world.
We carry all the power 
we need inside 
ourselves already.
We have the power 
to imagine better.” 
– JK Rowling

Ladies and gentlemen … Start your imaginations!

P Michael Biggs
Offering Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time

Monday, May 15, 2017

Danger Is a Lousy Reason to Stop

"The freeways are dangerous.  I have twelve miles to drive to work.  I think I should quit."

"I tried ice skating once.  It was dangerous.  I fell and could have seriously hurt myself.  Dangers lurked everywhere on the ice." 

"I want to open my new business, but I might go bankrupt.  And employees might steal from me, and I might get sued, and I might fail, and I might …"

Yes indeed.  Dangers lurk everywhere. 

And so do the possibilities of accomplishment.  Notice I used the word “accomplishment”. 

You and I just might make some progress in the face of dangerous “things” out there. 

There lie our marching orders.  We do the “thing” because our thirst for accomplishment overrides our fear of failure and danger.

This is an important picture.  Rest your eyes on it.

The fishermen know 
that the sea is dangerous 
and the storm terrible, 
but they have never found 
these dangers sufficient reason 
for remaining ashore.
Vincent Van Gogh

P Michael Biggs
Offering Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time

Monday, May 8, 2017

Who's Behind the Label

There is a scene from the movie Patch Adams that has made a profound impact on me.  Patch (played by Robin Williams) is with a small group of medical school students and they are following an experienced physician around the hospital.  They come upon a woman in a hospital bed in the hallway.  The teaching physician said, “This patient has such-and –such an illness.”

Patch casually asked, “Does this person have a name?” 

The doctor looked at the chart and said, “Her name is Doris.”

Patch called her by name, and said, “Hi Doris.  How are you doing today?” 

For a moment in time Doris changed from being an actress playing a part to a real person, and seemed to literally come alive by the simple act of someone recognizing her and calling her by name.

We are human beings with wants, needs,
dreams and wishes behind all the labels by which we become known.

I test this out every day on my job as a banker.  It is my personal agenda to learn every customer’s name and use it properly. 

We have a group of homeless individuals who frequent our church on Sunday.  I’m making a huge effort to remember their names and give them attention and esteem by at least addressing them correctly.

We are not “that person down the street” or the “brown-haired girl on the 2nd floor”.  We have names, a past, dreams and a future.

Get beyond the labels of “the mail clerk” or “the guy who always wears brown”.

Names matter.
Identity matters.

No … No … No!

Recognize me and my worth. 

I am a person in here.  Get to know me.

P Michael Biggs
Offering Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time