Calm Down

"In most situations, we don't need to slow down, we need to calm down." Bob Proctor

Hmm. There may be more times than Proctor admits, where slowing down is indeed important. But with that nuance, I think he is on to something. Many times, our need is to "calm down." Often, that calmness is needed when things are happening fast.

Change is taking place.
Conflict is erupting.
Tension is escalating.
Stakes are mounting.
Sides are forming.
Blood pressure is rising.
Retorts are rising. 
Irritation is growing.

And as this happens, the likelihood of wisdom, discernment, justice, prudence, and adding value is fading fast.

Respecting Others

A flippant, frivolous person may ridicule others, may controvert (fall out from them, argue against, and bicker with) them, scorn them; but he who has any respect for himself seems to have renounced the right of thinking meanly of others. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I miss some of the old values. That of charity, respect, dignity, honor... the things Goethe refers to in both the quotes that I share.

I have to admit, I cannot watch the presidential debates. Notice the language Goethe uses (thinking meanly of others). Attacking, vilifying, mocking, slandering, accusing, despising, cursing... rude interruptions, utter disregard for the basic rules of civil discourse... 

To All My Hobbit Friends

On the Shoulders of Hobbits book reviewWhether Real, Allegorical or Imaginary!
As the third and final installment of The Hobbit is just about upon us, I want to give you a STRONG recommendation. I URGE you my fellow Hobbits, to take some time and go really deep on the immense spirituality and virtue that is found in The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings.

You will enjoy the movie(s) far more when you understand the lessons and "secrets" they contain. 

I am quite far through (but not quite finished with) a wonderful book. It is:

When Goodness is Thrilling

C. S. Lewis quote about him  how thrilling he makes goodness

This past week I did something a little unusual. I listed to at least a half dozen sermons from various radio preachers. Three of them were very good communicators. Two were pretty good, the third - well... let me just say, "he must have missed his true calling." BUT... even the good communicators, it hit me, were all on the negative side. They were each focusing on what is wrong, what it is evil, what it will do to the one who embraces it... Even though they were true messages (and needed), there was very little "redemption" in them except for a tag line at the end. "This is why you need Jesus."

Thomas Carlyle and the Dishonest Man

Carlyle came from a Scottish-Calvinist background. While he turned away from much of the faith, still there was embedded within him, that essential worldview way of understanding life. At the core of that was a profoundly religious-moral understanding of truth, beauty and goodness. So much of Carlyle's writings were to expose VICE and to encourage VIRTUE. Here is one of his observations.

Thomas Carlyle quote  On the Choice of Books, dishonest man

Whether the dishonest man is a politician, preacher, educator, businessmen or friend - they "darken counself by words he utters."

When our culture allows such people to be in positions of leadership - well, the old biblical word WOE - comes to mind.

Brian K. Rice
Leadership ConneXtions International


The Loss of Guilt

guilt guiltyI don't want to make you feel guilty.
That was the comment made by the speaker during a great seminar I heard. I immediately found myself wondering - why not? After all - I was guilty and I suspect most of the listeners were guilty. What do I mean - I was guilty?

Well, I was guilty because I wasn't doing the things the speaker presented as good, right and true. Not only that, but as moral guidance and more, moral imperative from an impressive source - namely the God of the Old and New Testament scripture.

Virtues and Tenets of a Profession

Here is a real interesting and useful model that gives one author's understanding of the VIRTUES needed for good work and then the TENETS (or best practices/ways) of good work.

On this website, there is a poster that has 7 Virtues and 15 Tenets (you can download it).
There is a pdf that has a brief explanation (you can donwload it).
And there is a video you can watch as the author talks about this model.

Well worth checking out. What may be even more useful is for you to think about your own core list of the necessary Virtues and the best Tenets that will help you do good work and be a good leader.

Brian K. Rice
Leadership  ConneXtions International

Good and Evil

Saying Yes and Saying No
Here is a quote that was simple, direct and very inspiring to me. It comes from, Reading for Preaching by Cornelius Plantinga Jr. (pp. 36-37)

"At its core, true religion has to do not just with kindling our passions, but also with aiming them in the right direction. The world is full of good. The Godly person will say YES to it with all her heart and then act accordingly.

Intelligence and Energy: Without Integrity They Will Kill You

It all begins with character!
I've seen leaders wipe out on the issue of integrity. One story, in particular, of a leader I knew quite well - his fundamental lack of integrity, his need to succeed, his need to present to others an image of himself (that was simply far from reality) and how he flamed out and hurt quite a few people - this was one of those painful reminders of what happens when integrity is not present.

Warren Buffett knows a thing or two! He is considered the greatest investor of the 20th century. He is one of the world's wealthiest individuals. He is a philanthropist of the highest order. Therefore, I found this statement by Buffett to be supremely interesting.

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