This-essay is a7309072.htm which is available at the web-site www.essayz.com. See more notes at the bottom. Previous-Essay <== This-Essay ==> Following-Essay By-Months By-Years By-Words Webs of Like-&-Un-Like ESSAYS <==> Like-&-UN-Like This-One ========================================================== %BEING HELPFUL 730907 Some people rarely seek to be helpful to others. They illustrate the degree to it is true that God helps those who help themselves. There are some people who seek to be helpful to others. They illustrate the degree to which how helpful one really is---depends critically upon one's self-image of what it means to be helpful. Consider the agents of the inquisition who tortured and killed people to save them from the fires of hell. They had a perverted self-image of what it means to be helpful. At a less dramatic level science instructors have differing self-images of how they may best be helpful to their students. Some instructors focus on maintaining standards by demanding that typical students of today gain course credit by accomplishing as much and in the same way as did a differing cross section of students in the schools of their own educational careers. Other instructors focus on giving students what students in their immaturity think they need. The former instructors may succeed in training some technocrats. The latter instructors may train few technocrats worthy of attention, and may only help students feel good about themselves--- until they discover they can not cope with real problems which demand decisions and action with irreversible natural consequences. Neither self-image of the role of the instructor leads to being helpful in a real way. Both self-images neglect the importance of dialogue between technically competent (but effectively less sensitive) educators. It is very difficult for persons who are only role- playing to enter into dialogue. It is even more difficult if one participant is with power trying to maintain standards in an insensitive way, or alternatively; in a fawning way courting the favorable consideration of the other. In such situations being helpful is all but impossible---because dialogue is all but impossible. A person with a self-image of being helpful which does not include dialogue with the person being helped--- is likely to be a person whose self-image will misdirect efforts into wasteful, if not destructive ways. The worship of lofty ideals, and selfless dedication to principles which transcend self, will not eliminate the need for genuine dialogue as an essential ingredient to being helpful. Idolaters can not be helpful in any real way. (c) 1999 by Paul A. Smith in GO: essayz.com "Search for Integrity and Honesty" (On Being Yourself, Whole and Healthy) ==========================================================Lines beginning with a percent sign are KEYWORDS for use in ESSAY-System Searches. Their terminal digits are dates of writing in the format @yymmdd#, where @ = a means 99, @ = b means 20, and # = is a within-date essay-count. Links to date-adjacent essays are near page top & bottom.
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