Are we living in a me-centered world or a we-centered world? You and I are probably a combination of both and there is good reason to be. If we care about ourselves and also care about others; we can live in the balance of caring for self and looking out for others. This compassion for self and others is a very healthy quality and important in the world we live in today.
Most people are me-centered to some degree because they see taking care of themselves as important. They know that if they don't care of themselves no one else is likely to. They want what they want and sometime loose sight of what others need. Self-care and self-love are very important qualities to be a well round human being. Those that miss out on self-love often find themselves trying to make up for it by surrounding themselves with what they want. This usually doesn't work because being ok with oneself happens within. What works better is caring for self, which enhances our ability to reach out beyond our own needs.
There are also people who care little about self and define their lives by their giving. These people may dedicate their lives to caring for the needs of others (people, animals, plants etc). The quality of their giving however may be less if they do not at least have an open heart to themselves. We-centered people are inclusive and often think about the bigger picture like people who are hungry in other parts of the world. The unhealthy end of the “we” people is that they don't do a good job of self-care and sometimes fall into blaming others for the ills of the world.
It seems like there are almost as many combinations of me-centered and we-centered people as there are people in the world. Some types seem to stand out as representing me or we.
There are those are obviously more "me" focused: politicians, celebrities, CEO's, radio talk show opinionators, etc. There are others who work at animal shelters or homeless shelters, in education or human services who focus on caring for others who tend to be more “we” oriented. There are the tea bagger’s political groups who focus on “me” as if it is the “we” that are doing them wrong. They don’t seem able to see a bigger picture. There is also those who suffer quietly and are stuck in the small world of a closed heart and refuse to open to the “we.”
Seems I am rambling along here and I know there is a point or two I want to make. The first point is that there is no right or wrong, good or bad in this “me vs. we” debate. This is just a spectrum of human possibilities. If you are interested in finding where you are at on the spectrum do some self-inquiry and observe your interactions with yourself and the world around you.
Me. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . We
Be careful not to become judgmental towards self because that would mean less self-awareness and move you away from your kind heart. You may find that your edge for growth may be towards more self-care (me) or moving in the direction of more compassion (we) for the rest of the world
The balance point for each of us is different but it resides some where in the middle.
Self-care = More Compassion for Others.
Loving Me = More Open to We
Peace Letter #80
Dear President Obama,
Financial reform is a great focus for your administration and so needed. Just one example: if so many of the wealthy corporations didn’t get such tax shelters, social security would be flush for generations. Also all the financial gambling with all these near secret angles has left us in a mess. Please work to protect us all.
Also don’t forget the War effort is a financial disaster at every level so let’s get out of the mess we are in.
Joseph Bernard, Ph.D.
Join me and send President Obama emails of support and encourage the end of war and the other dysfunctional ways of government at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact