Do they care?

By Trevor Forrester on 7/2/2012

Over the last week I have been able to catch up with some old friends who I had not seen for quite some years. As we exchanged our own personal experiences over the years since we last met I was greatly troubled by the fact that so many of them felt estranged from the very ones that they sought to care for.

Why over the last 20 years or more have I met so many people that had set their main goal in life to serve others only to find themselves uncared for? It seems that I have met an endless stream of people who have set out on journeys of caring for others only to find that journey terminated in pain and suffering. What is there about the human nature that makes us so uncaring for the carers? Why do we seek to pull down those who would build us up?

Is it that the human nature must seek to find fault in those that we asked to care for us or is that human nature is such that we only seek to destroy. As we look at the world today it certainly seems that human nature is set on a course of destruction and as we read about our leaders in government we find that every peccadillo of theirs has been dug up, advertised and brought to public attention. Must we seek constantly to destroy those who would care for us.

On the one hand we have the silent majority who stand by and let the vocal minority dictate their responses and on the other the vocal minority who would risk everything in an effort to bring undone the best plans of mice and men. It is the juxtaposition of these two forces that creates with in our communities the tension that we see in all countries including Australia, Ireland, Great Britain and America. Is it apathy on the part of the silent majority that leads us towards war, pestilence and famine.

What is it about human nature that the minority will remain silent until the very worst case scenario has happened? Are people so busy with their lives that they leave little time to contemplate the larger issues in life? Some may say that not all humans have the ability of contemplation of greater issues and are satisfied with their lives as they are. Yet history has shown us that when the worst has finally come it is only then that the strength of human nature can be tapped. It is then that we see great movements of people protesting against those who would seek to take away the freedoms and rights that they have become accustomed to.

The leave me alone I am quite happy with the status quo option that many people accept can lead to great harm in the society around them. We see it everywhere in organisations, businesses and churches of all faiths. Many say that humans were made to be ruled and if we look at history one might be tempted to agree. Yet when we look at great movements like the Greek and Persian Wars that started around 499 BC and lasted almost to 400 BC we see that great leaders amongst the Greek population were able to call the people to fight for what they believed. It was to take great leaders like Miltiades to lead the Greek army to victory in the battle of Marathon.

It was during this period of history that the geopolitical landscape of today was first defined and created. As we look today at the lines between the East and the West we see its birth in this time of war and suffering. Many of the great philosophers of the past were to come out of this landscape and create new paradigms of understanding. Philosophers like Aristotle and Plato and those that followed them were to take their experiences and internalise them into thought. They tried to contemplate and to understand their own existence within the realm and boundaries of their own lives. From here the basis of modern day philosophy gained a ground swell of followers who put forward ideas and opinions that are today at the very core of who we are.

Yet this time it is not without those who would seek to bring down those who sought to serve, just because of people's own ideals and idiosyncrasies. Many would plot the undermining of their leaders in an attempt to take over their positions of power. For no other reason than selfish gain, history is full of both men and women who have been called to service only be cast aside or discarded by lesser people. Yet if we learn nothing else from that period of history surrounding the Greek and Persian Wars we should learn that if we are united with one goal we can achieve much.

Today we see many people who have been used, abused and discarded by those they sought to serve. I am caused to wonder will it will take another great War for our current generations to see the folly behind self aggrandising and self-serving nature's. Ones that are allowed to go unchecked because the majority choose to remain silent, while minority are allowed to lead our country's down the paths of war and pestilence.

You might ask how does this fit in with caring for carers? The answer I believe lies within the example we see on our past history. It is only when the silent majority is prepared to not be silent that great movements of humanity can bring about change of an everlasting kind. It is only by the silent majority making a conscious decision to no longer be silent that those who seek to care for us will finally find a caring community who is prepared to accept them despite their foibles and meet them on a equal footing.

I'm reminded of an old country doctor that I knew as a child growing up in a small country town in northern New South Wales Australia. He was a tireless worker and at no time would he refuse to see a patient no matter the time of day or night. I can still remember as a child his gentle presence as he sat on my bed taking my temperature while telling my father all kinds of jokes. He was unfortunately to work himself to death with little recognition for his achievements and no legacy except for his own life for history to remember. The world is full of people who have done the same and have been forgotten with no monuments to remember them by other than crumpled gravestones in lonely cemeteries in deserted places.

Will humanity wait until the next great War to finally rise up and challenge the very things that are destroying our society today or will it open it's heart to hear the cries of a world in turmoil and do something about it. I believe that the latter is possible if humanity would only stop and listen to those who are trying to lead them spiritually. For it is in the spiritual realm that humanity has the greatest chance of a future of peace and prosperity. As we stop and listen and reflect we will leave our self open to the spiritual side of our nature and just as in the past we will see great reformations and movements of people willing to conquer the unconquerable.

Trevor