There are two schools of thought about working with others. One says if you want something done, do it yourself and work independently. Another proposes that teamwork is needed. As modern life grows more complex, the world requires interdependence. For everything to run smoothly, cooperation is needed.
When you speak of cooperation in this world, it is not enough to tell others to practice it; you must live it yourself if you want your words to be effective.
Develop Respect for All
How do we live a life of teamwork and cooperation? The first step is to make sure that our hearts are clear of any hatred and prejudice for others who are different from us. We must develop respect in our hearts for people of different backgrounds. We need to eliminate prejudice and discrimination from our hearts and our mind.
It is said that it is out of the abundance of the heart that we speak. If we have hatred towards anyone, we cannot hide it for long; it is bound to come out from our lips or show on our face. Our actions will speak even louder than our words. Thus, living in a cooperative way with others begins with clearing our hearts of any animosity towards others.
When we clean our heart from any prejudice and ill will for others, then goodness can reside there. Kindness will enter our hearts.
Next, we can be cooperative by making sure our words express appreciation and tolerance for all people. We need to watch our words lest we injure any heart. Do our words cause division, or do they bring people together?
Loving, caring words that make people feel comfortable bring people together. We can model sweet and loving speech. In whatever situation we find ourselves we can become an example of love, tolerance, and harmony. Over time, others will emulate our example and start to speak in that manner as well.
Perform Actions that Bring People Together
Third, we need to work cooperatively through our actions.
Every day we are faced with choices. Are we going to take actions that tear people apart or actions that bring people together? In our jobs, we often work on committees or have a vote on policy decisions. Do our voices promote policies that show love and tolerance toward people, or do they create prejudice, discrimination, and bigotry?
At every opportunity, we should inspire the people with whom we work to make decisions and take actions that promote cooperation. In our homes, children model themselves on what the parents do. If they see the parents extending open arms to embrace all people no matter how different they may be, then they will grow up to be adults who do the same.
If cooperation is to take hold in our world, people of all backgrounds need to have respect and tolerance for people who are different from them.
Develop Cooperation through Meditation
One of the most effective methods I have come across to make cooperation a living reality in our own hearts is through meditation. Spending time daily in silent meditation helps us commune with a peaceful place within that promotes cooperation. Those moments are filled with bliss, peace, and love.
As we enter the inner sanctum of our hearts, we find that there is Light within us. The realization dawns on us that the same Light that is within us is in all other human beings. We start to recognize that same Light within others. Then the outer differences that separate us start to dissolve. We no longer see a person’s hair color, eye color, or skin color. We no longer see the way people dress or speak. Instead we see one Light expressed by many different outer coverings, each beautiful in its own way.
Just as electricity can flow through bulbs and lamps of many shapes and sizes and still be the same light, so can the Light within us shine in many different human forms, and even in animals, fish, birds, and reptiles. We start to see all life as one.
We realize we are all important, and that when there is teamwork, all systems work properly. We recognize that we are all cogs of the same wheel, and that cooperation is important for anything to work well.
By sitting in meditation, we can increase our own understanding of cooperation. We will then radiate that example to others in our own sphere of life.