Thursday, August 26, 2010

Unity and Understanding

Unity and understanding are two terms which are critical to a civil society and its prosperity. Both are often applauded in the media, but not as a general rule—applying to everyone. It's one thing to desire unity and understanding within a tribe, and quite another to desire them between tribes.

As with major political parties, creators and performers are diametrically opposed in their interests. The more these groups unify and understand their members, the more they tend to cultivate those members' division from and ignorance of other groups—particularly those in opposition.

But opposition creates balance. Imagine two people holding hands and spinning in a circle. They can lean back rather far without falling over. Then imagine them holding the ends of progressively thinner ropes. At what point is the connection too weak to sustain balance?

Furthermore, when the connection remains the same, but the single persons on either side become groups, the connection is strained to the breaking point. What is the solution?

If each member of the opposing groups takes up an adequate connection between himself and one other person, the strength with which the groups are connected would be indestructible. It is natural, and therefore easy, to forge connections within a group. So each balanced coupling would produce individual emissaries who would enable understanding.

Ultimately, it comes down to this: unity and understanding can only be adequately accomplished on the familiar level. We must each be familiar with the viewpoints of people who the system tries to call our enemies. We must then share our understanding with our friends.

It takes emotional labor, but it's indispensable.

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