Day 357: Can there be Only One Source of Authority?

In the structure of many governments and businesses, there is one central point of authority - be it the executive, the constitution, the judiciary, the CEO, the board of directors, the legislation, the military or the shareholders. Everywhere we look, everything we have done, reflects the same ideology: a central point of supreme authority. There may be some systems that are not based on this principle, but they are obviously not the norm for I cannot think of even one.

The entire premise of a central point of authority is flawed - it leaves open the potential for abuse and exploitation from that one central point. The really flawed part about it is that no one dares to challenge the authority, for the holder of authority has the power to crush all who stand in its path.

Unfortunately that is the idea we have created and continue to participate within: authority is power. Is this all authority is? Is it what authority should be? Let's face it, authority does not make a person act in a way that is best for everyone - it is normally a case of a person being ruthless enough to fight their way to a position of authority - do we really want the people who are supposed to be guiding and caring for humanity and the planet to be in the positions they are in because of their willingness to be ruthless?

Some believe that communism as it has existed in the past and as it exists now is a system devoid of authority. This is not true: consider China, North Korea, the Soviet Union - each of these had/have a ruling class that dominates the masses.

I cannot see where the way that we live authority is beneficial to the majority of life on Earth. Sure, I can easily see how this form of authority benefits the minority - but are we all living our lives to serve those few, regardless of the misery it causes to us and to others? That is what we are doing, regardless of whether we realise it or not. Whether our designated authority holder vows to protect and serve or not, the ones who benefit most from the implementation of this definition of authority are those who hold positions of authority. How often does one see a poor king or president living in a shack and rich citizens all living in mansions?

Is there not another way to live authority? Is there not another way to implement that which is good about authority? Authority can also mean that one is experienced and able to assist/teach others regarding a particular thing. We live as if authority is all about power - what if we lived like authority is all about acting in a way that honours life? It is possible to live and work together as equals, without one (or more) taking the position of authority (in terms of power). It is possible to come together as a group of equals to plan and work together, each giving whatever input they have to offer, and from those many perspectives it can be decided and determined which of the possible choices will benefit everyone involved without causing any harm. It is possible to work out differences as a group of individuals if each participant is willing and able to take part without resorting to any emotional outbursts or manipulation - if each participates from a starting point of sharing and a desire to forgive and let go.


  1. A very thoughtful article,thank you :-)


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