Every now and then we seem to drift into war talk, in the west anyway, and maybe in many places of the world. As troops pull out of Afghanistan the new threat seems to be Iran, and you would not be alone if you were thinking ‘not again’.
With something as serious as war you would think that the approach for thinking about it would be rational, but I fear it is not. The words around the threat to peace, which is how it is termed, appear to be rational. The fear, on Iran, is the acquiring of nuclear weapons, well, the making of them really. That seems a fair enough fear, especially as Iran is a long way away from being a stable state with the last elections being challenged on the streets which were met with ruthless oppression. The rhetoric from Iran varies from ‘you have nothing to worry about’ to staying with the view to remove Israel from existence.
But the steady increase in war rhetoric seems more like the standoffs in boxing, with the latest disgraceful events with Hayes and Chisora taking that to new heights.
So how do politicians get drawn in to this game play which seems more based on some form of intuitive action and response than any real reasoning? It surely must be because we categorise events, just like we categorise people (see Mum is another species), a system of looking for and finding threats is built in, we have it when we are children which helps us survive threats from our peers and others, and it takes a great supportive environment at home and at school to generate a feeling of security which is the norm and not the exception.
The writing I have been doing on How to Advise the President is all about how we have 3 types of thinking, creative, intuitive and reasoning, and often intuitive beats reason hands down, especially with immediate risk, a catalytic set of events ready to go. But war is usually a progressive risk, and it is vital the right tools are used, and for that the right tools are creative thinking and reasoning in combination.
This brings me to the other complementary feeling of love, for other people in general and for one person in particular. The kind of game play that goes on in the lead up to aggression and counter aggression also occurs in the build up to Love. There is a true story of a professor who studied the ingredients of happy marriages, and then when he got married was asked if he followed his own recommendations, and his reply was, of course not, this was much too important.
The professor knew instinctively that reasoning is not the thinking that works for love, and although a touch of creativity can work wonders, being the trigger that lets loose the emotion sometimes, the real emotion of love is going to come from understanding one’s own Intuition.
Novelists, playwrights, artists, have all worked on how that intuition can work wonders and how it can go horribly wrong. It is easy, as songs say, to fall in love with love, it is easy to fall in love with the person you want someone to be and not the real person.
So how do we know if war is a real threat or love is true and not imagined?
The most important decisions in life, and love and war are certainly amongst them, need us to be skilled in reason, and intuition and creativity, to use each to check the other. This is without right of each to reject the other but simply as a way of checking that reason, or intuition are real and substantial and that we have not creatively imagined what our intuitions are seeking or reasoning which is more like a work of art than a work of calm logical analysis.
Loss of love and the threat of aggression create fear, and fear leads to loss of reason and a heightened intuition which makes it unreliable.
I sincerely hope that we can find creative ways to reduce the threat of war, to bring reason to bear from all sides. And I hope that you find creative ways to find love, should you seek it, and creative ways to keep it when you have it, roller coaster rides happen though!