"We will develop and cultivate the liberation of mind by lovingkindness -- make it our vehicle, make it our basis, stabilize it, exercise ourselves in it, and fully perfect it." The Buddha

Friday, May 8, 2020

There is a crisis. This is no time to look serious.


When I was growing up, I never liked men who were serious and mean. I still don't. Their scowl doesn't make them look more intelligent. It only makes them look weak. Because when I boil it all down, their concern is invariably on control and authority -- not empathy, improvement, wisdom, leadership, compassion.

True strength comes from understanding the situation and knowing what to do in response. If that is the case, why the cruel behavior? Only incapable people engage in cruelty to irrationally compensate for their deficiencies and unfavorable results.

What would be the demeanor of people who are capable and effective? I know the answer to this question because I've seen such individuals in action and their extraordinary results: they are caring, helpful, respected. Not fake friendliness but real acts of support. Whatever the circumstances, they can produce the best results because they can sustainably extract and employ the best within people. They unite and consolidate people's efforts by treating everyone like valuable fellow human beings who can contribute to the goal, regardless of their age, gender, race, background, economic status, physical limitations, etc.

Suppose there were some moral-depraved scientific method of proving one person's value over another, how much is that difference anyway? That's why arrogance is really ignorance. We're all living on a rock traveling at 67,000 miles an hour through space, our lives occupying an infinitesimal sliver along the infinite spectrum of time. This fact doesn't belittle life but should bring us to the ultimate realization that we need to look out for one another and take care of each other while we are still here. We are all, frankly, vulnerable.

Are there times to be serious? Sure. But that doesn't mean I need to look and act mean. In times of crisis, for example, what's important are ears to carefully listen, eyes for keen observation, and the sophisticated skill to get everyone to work together. Even if you're missing the first two, you can still succeed if you possess the last one. Human beings didn't evolve to work alone. That would be our one weakness and vulnerability. Therefore, when we work together as a team, community, and society, there are few things we cannot accomplish. ๐Ÿ’›


  1. I am very glad I read this post. Your appreciation of human beings and life in general is worth spreading. Working with capable people must mean you are capable yourself. As someone who wishes to contribute to humanity and happiness myself, I hope you will continue publishing advice.

    There are many human languages and while speaking them I sometimes forget that the purpose of grammar and definitions is not for me to memorize them, but to enable me to communicate with others with less misunderstandings. Your post reminded me that I need to be less of a lone bird.
    I wish you good luck and health. Thank you for your words.

    1. Hi Riya!

      Thank you for your thoughts on my philosophy and how I view the world. So often we are the smartest person in the room, but how much more wonderful to be someone who is truly caring of others and their well-being. We can certainly be both. Cuong ๐Ÿ’›

  2. Nice! 'True strength comes from understanding the situation and knowing what to do in response.'

    1. Nhung! Good to see you at Cuong.com and making a comment on it! Hoping your Tuesday is going well. Cuong ๐Ÿ’›


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"Irrigators channel waters; fletchers straighten arrows; carpenters shape wood; the wise master themselves." The Buddha