This is the start of a new series: Squares of Quotations. Every posting will focus on the balance between two good things and on their respective exaggerations (see info box below).
Today's topic: Destiny or Self-Determination?
Lots of attitudes we find annoying (in others as well as in ourselves) are maybe just exaggerations of an element of truth. When we give such an attitude a closer look, we feel that there is simply a need for a counterbalancing attitude.
As soon as we feel annoyed by how another person behaves, we might as well look for the element of truth in it and show our appreciation for it. That will make it easier to suggest a counterbalancing behavior, in order to highlight a path of improvement.
Of course one can also exaggerate the counterbalancing element of truth, possibly in an attempt to compensate for what was found to be too extreme, in the first place. Obviously, such an overcompensation isn't helpful either.
Two elements of truth plus their respective exaggerations form a square of values, describing paths of positive development. The concept of a Square of Values was first described by Paul Helwig (unfortunately, link in German only). Later, Friedemann Schulz von Thun extended it to include paths of positive developments, too. Only the form of a Square of Quotations is my own invention.
Self-Determination versus Destiny
|«If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right.»
| «God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the things that should be changed, and the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other.»
«What the mind of man can conceive and believe, It can achieve.»
«Fate rules the affairs of mankind with no recognizable order.»
What are your thoughts on this? Please leave a comment!