Inspiration – Free Will
By Nikki Viljoen of N Viljoen Consulting (Pty) Ltd
P J O’Rouke says “One of the annoying things about believing in free will and individual responsibility, is the difficulty in finding someone to blame your problems on and when you do find somebody, it’s remarkable how often their picture turns up on your driver’s license.”
To be completely honest, this one had me in absolute stitches!
These days finding someone who takes responsibility and accountability for their actions is quite rare.
One of my guru’s T. Harv Eker always says “you can only have excuses or successes!”
I am constantly amazed at the number of people who want the authority – in fact they demand it and of course all the perks that that brings, but when it comes time to be accountable and responsible, it suddenly becomes someone else’s problem, or it was because of something that someone else did or because there is a ‘plot’ to discredit them – talk about conspiracy theories!
I remember as a small child, going fishing with my father. It was one of the great pleasures in my life – spending quality time with my father, having him all to myself. Being out in the fresh air and sunshine on the farm, with nothing but the wild animals and the beauty of the bushveld around us was really quite special. There were many things that I learnt from my father, but what I consider to be one of the most meaningful is the fact that we are responsible for not only our actions, but also our ‘non’ actions.
This meant that as we fished, fishes that were too small to eat went back into the dam or the river to be caught another day when they were bigger. Then of course, when we had caught enough for our immediate needs (for the pot as we called it), the rest that were caught were also returned to the water to be caught another day. Pretty much along the lines of ‘catch and release’, except that we ate what we didn’t release.
Our responsibility did not end there. You see, what I caught also had to be cleaned and gutted and prepared for cooking. That was the way in which I was taught to respect the ‘animal’ whose life had come to an end, in order to feed me and in so doing give me life.
This is how I was taught to respect ‘life’ and I am sure that you will agree with me when I say that ‘respect for life’ is also something that seems to be a very rare commodity these days.
This was how I was taught to respect others and to take responsibility for my actions. I had caught the fish for my own needs, therefore it was my responsibility to clean it and gut it and prepare it for cooking and when I got older and was able to, to even cook it myself.
This is how I was taught, that every single action (and even non actions) have a consequence and that each consequence becomes a responsibility that we must hold ourselves accountable for.
Not a bad way to grow up, I am sure you will agree. It is something that the generations of today need to understand though, that shifting the blame makes them no less accountable for their actions.