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The Honey Drop Fable

On April 19, 2020, in Leadership Mindware, by Neculai Fantanaru

Try to determine the measure of your character, without making it the main reason for the occurrence of uninsured events of adequate moral coverage.

- A hunter returning from a hunt stopped to buy a jar of honey. As he poured the honey into the jar, the merchant dropped a drop. A fly came and sat there. From the edge of the roof, a bird came and grabbed it. The merchant’s cat saw it and threw itself at it, but the hunter’s dog also threw itself at the cat and killed it with its fangs. Angry, the merchant threw the stone at the hunter, who hit him in the head and killed him. To avenge him, the hunter’s family attacked the merchant’s house and killed his family, robbing the shop. Then all the villagers encamped on the hunter’s parents, and the two villages eventually found themselves at war. Believe me, once he has made a decision, the cunning man always finds the drop of honey to start the quarrel.*

Leadership: How do you evaluate your experience of using reason as unfolding events that imply an immediate need, correlating them with the interaction between what is observed and what is expected to happen?

Writer Mika Waltari said it well: “He who makes the first step must also undertake a second one. The first step is the most difficult and, when the moment comes, reasons for war will not be absent.” In particular, the connection between what is happening outside of you and what is happening in your mind is possible to manage, but only with the agreement of the balance between emotional control and allowing for the free expression of emotions in a healthy way.

It is not a question of the fact that a fire can start from a small spark, but it must be taken into account that the events take place according to man’s capacity to bear his reason in his “falls”.

Through the simple use of one’s own reason, in order to avoid the production of dangerous “sparks”, the distinction between “knowing” and “solving” is most clearly seen, being embodied, as an ideal, only by the Stoic sage. In the cold light of reason, to turn a fact on all sides and define it in the toxic substance of events, in the tendentious chaining of other actions in your life, in their tangled and serious becoming, one can see your true character.

Between what is observed and what is expected to happen is the experience of self-contouring in accordance with the role that the “unforeseen” can play in carrying out actions to achieve the right balance between what is known and what is hidden.

The man who has a right character differentiates between what is seen at first sight and what actually happens behind appearances, behind the curtain. Even if he cannot find the way or the opportunity to suppress in time a reaction that can have the opposite effect, sometimes produced in the form of a warning, he still intensifies his attempt to resist the freedom of self-expression in the face of the darkness of the minds in which light has not penetrated.

To put it another way. The right man subtly turns into an attempt to show that he is right, not opposing the event that has already taken place, but relying on the faculty of reason to formulate arguments oriented in the field of an inverted intentionality: the evil thing happened because someone went on the opposite lane and there he collided with a car traveling in the opposite direction. In other words, try not to intersect with something just because you intend to win something.

Leadership is the event that has already taken place, from which two conclusions can be drawn: “Never be interested in lost causes, meaning those in which no one else wants to get involved” and “never intersect with someone who shows too much interest for himself”.

The Honey Drop Fable can help us identify the measure of a leader’s character, which is given by his ability to be flexible. A leader knows that he must turn a complicated situation into a promising beginning, in order to correspond to certain requirements or a certain context. Moreover, the advice of the English writer Daniel Defoe must be heeded: “The highest degree of human wisdom is to know how to adapt your character to the circumstances and keep your soul calm despite the storm outside.”

* Note: Mika Waltari - Young Ioannis, Polirom Publishing House, 2020


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