[October 25, 2019] The ultimate test of a personal character is an individual who respects those who can be of no possible service to him. The specifics of how that is done are complex but the fundamental ideas of respect are found in good communications.
“The enemies cannot destroy the king who has at his service the respect and friendship of the wise men who can find fault, disagree, and correct him.” – Thiruvalluvar, 6th century Tamil poet and philosopher
Thiruvalluvar understood that the “king,” in order to remain at the head of his peoples, must surround himself with wise men that have the complete freedom to give their opinions and judgments. By doing so, they give the king his due and provide him with invaluable guidance, prudence of action, and clarity of voice. This is true and free communication.
In today’s more modern world – that differs from Thiruvalluvar’s time only by our technologically superior possessions – little has changed. Good communications remains a colossal challenge. Respect is necessary as much now as then. It should, then, come as no surprise that a cursory reading of the many texts from millennia ago are clear about the need for good communications to show respect.
My next-door neighbor has a son (married two years ago) who recently made them happy with a healthy grandchild. But there emerged a problem with his daughter-in-law; at least in my neighbor’s eyes. His son’s wife would not send pictures, call, or write to anyone. Why she has had no communication is odd. My neighbor believes this is a sign of disrespect and he is right.
Communication is a sign of respect. Communication must be clear, untainted, and true. Only then, does it work. And only then do we give others what they deserve. And, of course, to get respect, you must give respect.