Present Fears - Freedom of Expression LO27345

From: Jan Lelie (
Date: 10/04/01

Replying to LO27339 --

HelLO Deborah, HelLO-ers,

Thanks for presenting your fears, you show courage.

Regarding "How do i know ... ": perhaps we should develop a kind of Turing
test for all beings to establish if they're human? I would suggest that it
should incorporate a kind of Milgram experiment - famous (or should i say
infamous) for showing that people will conform to a group or to an
authority to the extent of performing inhuman actions - that people should
"fail" in order to "pass". On the other hand, it is inhuman to subject
somebody to such a test, because it can hurt a person and lead his or hers
insensitivity to human sufferings. So part of the test could be to ask to
devise a test to establish if somebody is human without incorporating a
Milgram experiment. Hmmmm too complicated.

Regarding the ideas from your colleagues "don't get involved": it is too
late for them. The moment you say "don't get involved", you are involved.
The trick is that you cannot not involve yourself. You can say you
don't.You can say it three times (stay neutral, there's nothing you can
do). But the fact that you're saying it three times doesn't make it true.
Not in this book. In fact it is establishing a kind of involvement of the
tragic kind.

Even more so, i would like to suggest that the fact, the idea, the
feeling, the notion, the principle that you think, assume, feel, act as if
you cannot be involved in the affairs of all fellow human beings, can lead
to the ultimate act of showing your "uninvolvement" in an terrorist act.
Only if you feel uninvolved in other human beings (that may be why some
people tend to describe the other human as "inhuman") you can kill.
Soldiers know this. So i think that it is only natural to assume that one
- as a person - should not get involved (short term), but i wouldn't be
surprised to experience that it would lead to involvement (long term) one
wouldn't like. Try to apply "shifting the blame". I get the idea that it
has to do with seeing another being as a means to end. Human beings are
not means to an end - to me. They are meaning in themselves.

So this seems to solve the first question. The test to establish if you're
not one of them is to ask yourself if you consider the other (anyother)
human, "one of us". Mind you, you could make a mistake, i still could be
"one of them". The ultimate act - and perhaps too much to ask from a human
being - would be to consider me still "one of us" even after showing that
i was "one of them". That, in my opinion, is meant by Jesus when he said
turning the other cheek when hit. It takes extreme courage, great insight
and compassion.

I didn't solve a thing, but it might lighten the burden,

Kind regards,

Jan Lelie

PS, i like peaceful warriors. I would have written peaceful worriors,


> I really appreciate your welcome and your interest.
> As a newcomer to this group I ask - Would you be kind enough to forward
> information about you to me?
> Isn't this ridiculous and inhumane to make such a request? but- How do I
> know you are not one of 'them?'


> Maybe my learning/development colleagues have the right answer- "Don't get
> involved." Stay neutral and go about business as usual and nobody will
> get hurt. "There's nothing you or I can do about the global crisis right
> now."
> Kindest regards, blessings and protection for the peaceful warriors.
> Deborah


With kind regards - met vriendelijke groeten,

Jan Lelie

Drs J.C. Lelie CPIM (Jan) LOGISENS - Sparring Partner in Logistical Development mind@work est. 1998 - Group Resolution Process Support Tel.: (+ 31) (0)70 3243475 or car: (+ 31)(0)65 4685114 and/or taoSystems: + 31 (0)30 6377973 -

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