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Show Me!

Posted on 2012.12.30 at 00:00
Current Location: 67235
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Understanding that saying the right things mean absolutely nothing without actionable follow-through is a necessity for those of us who speak. What you say is meaningless without actually doing it.

Words! Words! Words! I'm so sick of words! I get words all day through;
First from him, now from you! Is that all you blighters can do?

Herbert Hoover is quoted as saying, "Words without actions are the assassins of idealism," but while the pursuit of the finished product is obtained through action, I don't think conceptualizing an idea is, in and of itself, a textbook case of assassination. The apostle Paul quotes, "My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth." (Just to ensure I'm covering all my bases). Even Buddha said, "An idea that is developed and put into action is more important than an idea that exists only as an idea." Of course Buddha is the same guy who compared happiness to a candle - one which can light a thousand candles without being diminished. Some people see happiness as a glass of water; share too much of it and you have nothing left for yourself, so whatever. The point is, its a universal understanding, devoid of politics or religion or socio-economic status.

Philosophically the question then becomes, "How does one define action?" Using the root of the word we find that to act is anything done, being done, or to be done. So doing. Some may consider writing or communicating ideas as an action - and while it certainly is that, we're back to ideals. At some point something has to actually happen in order to pursue that ideal. The start, I believe, has to take place as a change in attitude and behavior, without which, action will never take place. Concerning this I have two quotes by Former President Richard M. Nixon on the matter. First, "People are persuaded by reason, but moved by emotion." Moved to what? Action of course. Second, "The man of thought who will not act is ineffective; the man of action who will not think is dangerous." So surely we require both to pursue our goal - words and action (or less ostensibly ideology and behavior/attitude supporting that ideology) - else there will never be any results.

I see real, actionable change through the metrics of behavior and attitude. For some, those are elusive immeasurable beasts. For me, its the key to unlocking everything else life has to offer.


jobu121 at 2012-12-30 17:15 (UTC) (Link)
Well said sir, well said indeed.

I do like the fact that you did cover your bases.
Sadly, I think most of us sit on the ideal without action. And we set ourselves up for failure because we make that action as you said immeasurable.

Maybe that will be my New Year's resolution. Act upon an ideal!
michelle1963 at 2012-12-31 15:57 (UTC) (Link)
It seems to me that those who state "I should do ...." such and such, do a lot of talking and not a lot of doing.

It speaks to their mindset - some kind of rules for what they believe is required by family / society, and not what they truly want to do. In fact they seldom, if ever, ask themselves that question. And if they do ask, then there is always some excuse as to why they can't, which speaks to some self-imposed limitation that they see as externally imposed.

What a straight -jacket!
michelle1963 at 2012-12-31 16:20 (UTC) (Link)
And speaking of talking, but not doing, I would be remiss in failing to mention those who loudly proclaim to be religious, wearing their religion on their sleeves for the whole world to see.... They do a lot of talking about their piety, and not a lot about actually living the compassionate life that their religious teachings prescribe.

And yet, there are many deeply religious people who go about their business, living lives according to their religious values with never a mention about their personal beliefs. Their personal beliefs are obvious in their behavior, although it may be difficult to ascertain whether the source of those beliefs is one school of religious thought or another, or an atheist who simply shares a deep conviction about ethical, compassionate behavior. And it really doesn't matter, because it is only the the behavior- the doing - that counts.
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