Global Consciousness V
from the book World
Diplomacy by Richard Sidy
There are three main characteristics which define a person of responsibility. The first is future orientation. A person of responsibility has a clear vision of the future - an understanding of cause and effect. Such a person understands one's individual participation in the consequences which present actions have upon future events for good or ill. The second characteristic is the commitment to the progressive improvement of life for all people and for all of life in general which takes precedent over selfish, short-term interests. This is not simply optimism, but rather an understanding that one must act to make improvement a reality. Third is the sensitivity and the ability to respond to the needs of others which must be met in order for life to improve. A person of responsibility lives and acts guided by the inner standard which these characteristics mandate. It is simply a way of looking at life and estimating ones purpose and contribution to it.
When one has the sense of responsibility, one does not simply act out of duty. Duty comes from the commands and expectations of others and does not necessarily meet the three standards of conscience described above. One may act against one's conscience, against one's judgment and against the needs of others and of the future because he or she is "doing one's duty" or "following orders." The sense of responsibility is a natural response to life circumstances which results in actions for the greater good. A person with a developed sense of responsibility is independent, beneficial and courageous automatically regardless of outside pressures or desires.
The sense of responsibility is a result of global consciousness and a basic building block of citizenship in the world community of nations. If leaders really had this sense, the current events in the world would look very different. Rather than crises, conflicts and suffering on every continent, there would be a sense of friendship and working together for a mutually beneficial future. Instead of putting humanity and nature at risk, leaders with the sense of responsibility would be in the forefront of cooperation for progress, for peace for the sustainable survival of humanity and the planet, and for fulfilling the needs, rights and hopes of people. National budgets would show very different priorities with more spent on eliminating the causes of war and less spent for defense and waging war.
(For more on leadership and the characteristics of responsible leaders read the "Leadership Series.")
© 2004 Richard Sidy
Consciousness I: The Sense of Economy