Collaboration Makes Us Smarter

 Self-interest and community interests are reciprocal. Marilyn Ferguson

No president is an island. It takes a whole village to run a democracy. None of us is as smart as all of us, Kenneth Blanchard. When will we ever learn?

The concept of community is important in this blog. Community: a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals. Community is the whole village. I believe the biggest sharing need is common attitudes. What would be the common attitudes of enlightened self-interest? Alone, we can do so little; together, we can do so much, Helen Keller. The greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members. Coretta Scott King. Compassionate actions of togetherness is the outcome of enlightened self-interests.

The well-known African proverb, It takes a whole village to raise a child, tells the story of interconnectedness. Everything is connected to everything else in an unbroken wholeness means you and I are connected, us and them are connected, everyone’s interests are reciprocal. John Donne’s No man is an island, says we each are part of the whole. If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together, African Proverb. It is often said that “Two Heads Are Better Than One”.

Collaboration:is working together to create something new in support of a shared vision; two or more people working together towards shared goals. Herein lies the problem. The republican and democratic parties in America do not have a shared vision  or goals for a better America. The two parties are now described as “ideological silos” (E J Dione Jr.), and “two tribes”. Tribalism is the attitude of our political parties. This, of course, leads to group think, my side bias, confirmation bias, and the bandwagon effect. We need a Declaration of Interdependence, moving from separation to connectedness. Notice that collaboration also means to cooperate with the enemy.

OK, so America didn’t start out with enlightened self-interest. We the people of the first democracy were not all considered equal. And there was no declaration of interdependence. Collaboration was not the operating procedure. Democracy has survived, even though it hasn’t thrived. My prediction is that there will not be a declaration of interdependence, only independence. Democracy in America will continue to survive, but not become a democracy of all the people. by all the people, for all the people. And it will not perish from the earth. My guess is, we will never learn — and choose to collaborate with enlightened self-interest.

On space ship earth, there are no pilots, only crew. Buckminster Fuller.



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