Today, in many occupations, it is common practice to ignore the impact of your actions on people. Sometimes, you aren’t aware that there is an impact. However, often the impact is easily understood, yet still ignored as not relevant to your work. The problem is the fact that a corporation or a bureaucracy is not a “person”. It has no conscience or sense of compassion. It has internal rules, goals and guidelines. It is up to us to supply it with a conscience. It is up to us to be aware of its impact on others and sensitive to the ways in which it is taking advantage of the poor.
For those who live, work and profit from the actions of a sociopathic corporation or bureaucracy, you may want to meditate on the following texts.
4 Hear this, you who trample upon the needy
and destroy the poor of the land:
5 “When will the new moon be over,” you ask,
“that we may sell our grain,
And the sabbath,
that we may open the grain-bins?
We will diminish the ephah,[a]
add to the shekel,
and fix our scales for cheating!
6 We will buy the destitute for silver,
and the poor for a pair of sandals;
even the worthless grain we will sell!”
7 The Lord has sworn by the pride of Jacob:
Never will I forget a thing they have done!
What will you say to Saint Peter when he asks you about the widow you made homeless? How will you justify to Saint Peter, raising her rent to obtain the current “Market Rate” because you needed to pay off investment expenses. Expenses that had nothing to do with her home or the contract you had with her.
You are fixing the scales in your favor and ignoring the impacts on those who entered into a commitment with your organization based on trust.
22 Do not rob the poor because they are poor,
nor crush the needy at the gate;
23 For the Lord will defend their cause,
and will plunder those who plunder them.
Do you think Saint Peter will except your excuse you for destroying that widow’s life because her “family & friends” didn’t help her?
Do you think Saint Peter will except the investor’s need for profits as your excuse for ruining someone’s life?
Finally, to the modern day vampires, the investors who only see dollar signs, what will Saint Peter say to you about earning your profits from the blood, sweat and tears of others?
35 and one of them [a scholar of the law] tested him by asking,
36 “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?”
37 He said to him, “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.
38 This is the greatest and the first commandment.
39 The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
40 The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.”
This is something that was once part of the American culture.
This is what made America Great.
We didn’t need to vanquish and destroy our enemies. After World War II, we showed compassion when we helped our enemies rebuild. Today our friendship with Germany and Japan is similar to our friendship with another ancient enemy, Great Britain.
Unfortunately, our ability to be compassionate did not extend to countries suffering from Communism. We were so afraid of Communism that we destroyed the economy of our neighbor, Cuba. It didn’t matter that the people of Cuba suffered. We hurt Castro and that was all that mattered.
It end result is that today, in many ways, we no longer are a compassionate nation. As a people, we can’t even respect each other. How can we claim that we love one another?
At the international level, our lack of compassion has been demonstrated time and time again. During the post World War II period, while rebuilding Japan and South Korean, we helped destroy North Korean because of fear of Communist China. We also helped destroy the northern half of French Indochina by helping France fight communism as represented by Hồ Chí Minh, who was supported by China.
As a nation, we need to relearn how to work together as a community. We need to relearn how to help others without looking for “a return on our investment”. The bottomline, until we relearn how to love our neighbor, our nation will continue to rot, from the inside out.
My call to you is to look at everything you do each day and ask; “By this action, am I helping people or hurting people.” If the answer is “I am hurting people”, please stop and look to see how you can change that “hurt” to “help”.