On Wednesday, as I was writing for this blog, I searched the web for references to “The Human Element”. In the Google search, I found a link to a Youtube video. I clinked on it and was transferred to a video that showed beautiful imagery and uplifting music. As I watched the video I felt comforted. Without any deliberateness, I included a link for this video at the end of the blog I was writing.
As is my practice, I asked my wife to read the blog. As she was doing so, I saw here attention sharpen and wondered what she was sensing. As she completed her visit to the blog, she looked at me and asked, “do you know who created that video?” I replied, “No.” “Well” she said, “it was produced by Dow Chemical”. She is a musician and as she was listening to the music, she had the “feeling” that there was something that was being sold by the video.
Indeed as I listened to it again, I could hear what she was feeling. They had produced a very subtle piece that had two messages. The first is that human beings are just like chemical elements. This simplification has a clear purpose when you are chemical company. The other message I found was that we the people bend the elements to serve us. There was no connection to the animate world of living things or our responsibility when we use this power.
I won’t speculate on their motives. What I can say is that once I saw the inner messages and knew they were not what I believe in, I deleted the link to the video and this lesson lingers. I can see how often I take things at face value. I let an emotional reaction guide my choice without checking in with my “whole” self to see how what I am engaging “feels”. This sets up a situation where I either make choices that I have to revise when I realize that they don’t fit with my values (like Wedensday) or more troubling, when I never see the real impact of that choice.
Well, it was a wake up call I am heeding and I am deeply grateful to my wife for her wisdom.