Thursday, June 03, 2010

I Choose Authenticity by Brene Brown

Speaking on Tedx Houston June 12th

When we treat people as objects, we dehumanize them. We do something really terrible to their souls and to our own.

Martin Buber, an Austrian-born philosopher, wrote about the differences between an "I-it" relationship and an "I-you" relationship. An "I-it" relationship is basically what we create when we are in transactions with people whom we treat like objects - people who are simply there to serve us or complete a task.

I-you relationships are characterized by human connection and empathy.

I’m not suggesting that we engage in a deep, meaningful relationship with the man who works at the cleaners or the woman who works at the drive-thru, but I am suggesting that we stop dehumanizing people and start looking them in the eye when we speak to them. If we don’t have the energy or time to do that, we should stay at home.

And, for the love of humankind, we need to get off of our damn phones and show some basic respect to the people who are standing in front of us.

Buber wrote, “When two people relate to each other authentically and humanly, God is the electricity that surges between them.”

I just don’t think treating each other with basic dignity is asking too much.

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