This is a painful subject for me to blog about because I am torn in two by it. It cuts right trough the whole ‘personal developoment’ project like a knife. A vast variety of conflicting emotions are stirred up by it. There are different ways to frame ithe key question, but it all boils down to this question: are some people better than others? Before you reach through the internet to strangle me as an elitist swine, let me explain…
Personal development is about helping people become better. But better in what way?
Firstly, there is better at. This is a comparison between skill levels. Someone can become better at performing a certain activity, such as time management or public speaking. This assumes that many of these types of activities are skills that can be learned by any average person to some degree.
Second, there is better to. Comparison between activities.
Better than. Comparison between person and person. Than themselves as previously measured. Than others?
I’ve described it before as a clash between
The inferiority of the TV culture
Those who wine about beign underdogs are usually there by their own negligence e.g. men.
a Self-motivated desire to elarn as a way out of poverty
money as power and profit as good
Each honest calling, each walk of life, has its own elite, its own aristocracy based on excellence of performance.
James Bryant Conant quotes
“Everyone has the impulse to be elite.”
anti mediocrity & pro heroism
Aristotle & Koch