Who, the speaker asks, believe in principles? All hands are up!
Raise hands then, he continues, which of you seek to abide by principles in your everyday transactions and activities?
Silence ensues, no hands raised in a silent exhibition of some form of guilt and remorse!
Questions inescapably surface:
Why is it so difficult to apply our principles in real life?
Why do all of us, in spite good dispositions and intentions, end up calculating and valuing self-interest or self-convenience more than principles?
Why do we twist or sometimes even distort things to justify a self-interest choice, knowing very well that every time we do so, we distort together with our principles, our conscience and self-esteem?
But would it not be a utopia in our individualistic world where money and power rule, for someone to aspire to change the status quo and bring back the principles in our lives? or even a laughable act?
No matter how hard that would seem to be, there are good reasons for wanting to break the status quo.
Utopia would not be the act that aspires to a fairer system that aligns with conscience. Utopia is to think that you will always be on the winning side and never have to feel the unjust loss that the system engenders. But when fortune reverses its favors and you are no more the winner but the one that suffers the harm and injustice, then you will protest loudly about the unfairness of the system of a cynical world.
But your protests no matter how loud they may be, will not be heard. The status quo you yourself contributed to building has deafened the voices around you. Nobody can hear you, and even those that could, guilty themselves of the same, they find it in their best self-interest to pretend that they don’t.
And the hold of the status quo on us all not only goes on unabated but gathers strength by triumphantly emerging from every small or big battle, leading thus to the dominion of an unprincipled world where calculations and even machinations are the critical factors.
Would we like that? I wouldn’t.
I believe, as I have argued above, that it would be to our long-term interest to bring back the principles to our lives and to go beyond mere believing to the hard part of practicing them. That would not only lead to a fairer world, but it would give us back our unadulterated conscience!
About the author: Panikos Sardos is the Managing Director of P&E Sardos Business Solutions Int., a management consulting firm that offers advisory services, coaching and training. You are welcome to communicate with us by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone: +357 99640912, and to visit us at www.sardossolutions.com