The End of Competition is
the Beginning of Cooperation
Author: Zubli Zainordin | Posted: 09-11-2006
Let us now look within ourselves and see whether there exists a dire need for a competition. Then we shall be wise to choose the type of competition that makes a difference in our individual life, instead of the type of competition that widens the differences amongst us in this shared life.
Shall we begin by asking the following questions:
*Who is the individual you are competing against?
*What do you gain by competing against others?
*When is the time you are competing, is it only some of the time or all the time?
*Where are you competing, only here or at every corners of the world?
*Why are you competing, for a personal glory even if it defeats life’s purpose?
*How do you compete, is it constructive rather than destructive?
Yes there is such a competition for you to choose, especially one that enriches yourself as well as others, in addition to the benefits of discovering ways to add profound values to the joy of living in this world? William Osler said, “we are here to add what we can to life, not to get what we can from it.”
Yet, please observe very carefully that competition occurs at all levels of humanity. This competition exists at the dyadic level, teams, groups, families, companies, organizations, institutions, societies, states, and nations of the world.
Along the structure there are various examples. Those that are familiar to us include, a competitive situation between two boys competing against each other to win the heart of the most beautiful young girl in college; two opposing football teams are competing against each other to win a national trophy; two non-governmental groups are competing against each other to grab hold of a special grant from a philanthropy; two companies are competing against each other to capture a larger slice of the market segment; two political organizations are competing against each other to win the votes in an election; two educational institutions are competing to be on the number one spot for the number of students who pass the annual academic examinations; two societies are competing against each other over loyalties to religious affiliations; two states are competing against each other for claiming land and boundary expansion; two powerful nations are competing against each other to establish sovereignty through the conquest of other weaker independent nations.
Imagine! Almost everywhere there are those amongst us who are somehow caught in between the good and the evil, from as small as an argument, battle, bickering, brawl, combat, conflict, controversy, dispute, fighting, quarrel, squabble, struggle, wrangle, revenge, to as large as world wars. The affect, effect, and impact are surely devastating to human life, destruction of properties, broken ties of kinship, smashing of the ties of friendships, spreading of communicative diseases, destroy animals, plants, and nature, pollution of basic necessities, in addition to the corruption of the environment.
Surprisingly the competition between side A against side B, occurs where there exists the wrong intention, misunderstandings, bias, prejudice, limitation mentality, ill feelings, mix emotions, spiritual clashes, and the unnecessary wanting for might and power, where each side aspires to be better than the other. Alfred Adler said, “the feeling of inferiority rules the mental life and can be clearly recognized as the sense of incompleteness and fulfillment both of individuals and humanity”.
What a waste of human capital and natural resources. When it comes to your relationships to another individual, competition is a complete waste. At minimum there shall be one who will suffer unnecessary emotional stress, and at maximum someone could be murdered, as the worst case scenario can be. On a medium scale, companies that may choose to focus all efforts and available resources on producing better products and offering stupendous services. Yet, a lot of attention and energy are wasted on how to smear the image of other companies seen as their competitors. On a bigger scale involving nations, know very well how many millions of dollars are being spend annually in the competition to build weaponry. Initially for self-defense, and later when these weapons becomes rusty and almost obsolete, ridiculous ideas appear to be lurking within the soul of powerful leaders, such as, “to safeguard our people and our country, before any nation attack us, let us first strike war against other nations”. When a leader in power, suggests this kind of uttering, let George Bernard Shaw sayings be a reminder to us, “power does not corrupt man; fools, however, if they get into a position of power, corrupt power”. So when you decide to support a leader who is fooling around in such a competition, then prepare for massive waste, including tears to be shed by you and your loved ones.
Actually in life, there are not a single space nor place, that competition between two individuals or more than two sides, between the aggressors and the defenders, that has produced any benefit to all. I shall choose to agree with Fritjof Capra, when he said, “In the end the aggressors always destroy themselves, making way for others who know how to cooperate and get along. Life is much less a competitive struggle for survival than triumph of cooperation”. I believe, the end of competition is the beginning of cooperation.
What about competitive sports. Are these kinds of competition healthy? The same goes to all kinds of competitive sports. Although there are two sides facing each other, yet winning in this game is not about beating your opponents, instead winning is about playing the game, performing your best in this game to outdo yourself at the achievements of the last game. May the best individual wins, does not mean you are to be better than others, but you are now better than the you before.
The facts remain competition is a necessity in life in only one special space, that is between you and yourself. To elaborate, competition is an approach so useful in your life, so that you move from where you are now to where you can possibly choose to be. Here, competition means to outdo yourself whenever you are in an erroneous zone, or within a comfort zone, and raise yourself toward the peak of total success in life. This competition requires you to apply continuous self-improvements in all areas of your life. You shall then continue to compete between your future self against your present self.
There are valuable lessons to be learn from history, so as we may walk hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder, and together we shall build a better life to be shared by all citizens of the world. Soren Kirkegaard said, “life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”
So let an individual live in a competition between him and himself, between her and herself. A true competition between the present you and the future valuable you. Next, let cooperation prevails at all levels of the human organizational structure, be it dyadic, teams, groups, families, companies, organizations, institutions, societies, states, and nations of the world. Ultimate joy shall we all enjoy together, when synergy occurs through the cooperation between you and all others in the spirit of total integration.
So shall we integrate?
Filed under: Welcome