Friday, April 15, 2011
陈凯再版/平等只在上苍与法律面前 Equality Before God, Not Men/Government
Kamal Saleem: A Muslim Cries Out to Jesus - From a culture of hate to a culture of love 一个穆斯林恐怖分子的自省与转变 - 从“恨”到“爱”
Rockefeller Center: I believe in the supreme worth of the individual 洛克菲勒：我坚信个体价值的至高无上
Equality Before God, Not Men/Government
The Chinese Perversion of "Equality"
"Free Beings" vs. "Chinese" Series
价值一语 Words of Value：
Every human soul is of infinite value, eternal, free; no human being, therefore, is so placed as not to have within his reach, in himself and others, objects adequate to infinite endeavor. --- Arthur J Balfour
每一个人的灵魂都有着无限的价值； 它是永恒的与自由的。 由此而言，人没有理由不在他自身与他人身上找到足够的力量与勇气去进行永恒的努力与拼搏。 --- Aerthur J Bafour
By Kai Chen 陈凯 （Written 8/12/2006, Reprint 4/15/2011)
"Equality" is probably the most misunderstood and misconceived word in our modern time. I often find those who put equality on the very top of their agenda/priorities as either leftists or some kind power-mongers with pathological drive to dominate others. They simply misuse and mal-use equality as some ultimate value to gain power for themselves and to numb the masses' mind.
Let's take the part in American Declaration of Independence as an example:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal. They are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights, and among these are life, liberty and pursuit of happiness."
In this quote you may have noticed that "Equality" is never among the rights of human beings. Equality is merely a fact taken as one human faculty/feature before God. In short, we Do Not pursue equality, we ARE equal. In this sense, we are equal as human beings before our creator - God, and we are equal before the law as citizens of a free country. That is all.
"Liberty, equality and fraternity" had been presented in the French revolution as values/motto, but in America, equality has never been presented as a value. Martin Luther King in his famous "I have a dream" speech, only shouted out loud in the end: "Thanks God Almighty, we are Free at last!" (Not "Equal at last".)
In China with its hierarchical social structure and Confucian culture, there is no such concept as God/Creator, thus equality among human beings has never entered into the Chinese consciousness, not to mention the values of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. Yet after the communists took over, they prompt equality as the only/ultimate value they pursue - That is, equality in human property and wealth, not Liberty and Justice for all. In other words, the Chinese have always been obsessed with equalizing possessions among the masses. In the end, human beings are diminished/materialized into something less than human: They are only sub-humans equal only in their poverty and despair, as those in all socialist/communist societies. As Winston Churchill once put: "Capitalism is unequal distribution of wealth. Socialism is equal distribution of poverty/misery."
Beside in front of God and the Law, are we truly equal as humans? The answer is definitely negative. Only just societies result in Inequality in human wealth and possessions. And only free societies allow humans to pursue different individual interests to fulfill their lives' meaning according to what God has endowed them -- ability, effort, talent, interests, drive, ambition, luck....
If Yao Ming were to pursue gymnastics and Mike Tyson to pursue basketball, they would both have failed, for they failed to discover the talents God had endowed upon them in order for they to excel in life. Yet, it is FREEDOM that allows us to discover who we truly are. It is up to us, the free individuals, to find out the meaning of our lives and to fulfill them according to God's moral law.
People are never equal in ability and talent when they are born. This is exactly what nature and God intended, for without such "Inequality", human progress would be impossible. There has to be someone to first discover certain truths; there has to be someone to first break some records; there has to be someone to first attempt some endeavors by taking certain risks.... Think what a boring and colorless world it would be without some humans to first do things others have never dreamt of or have never attempted due to a lack of courage, conviction and ability. The country I was born into -- China was, is and has always been such a place of a ultimate boredom. It is a country that only exists in space, not Time, for it has never progressed.
Yet, China is one country that is obsessed with equalizing incomes/possessions among the people in society. "Income gap" between rich and poor has become the most fashionable word and an obsession in today's Chinese society. Even after the capitalism has saved the Chinese economy, people somehow still feel guilty about getting ahead of others, still feel afraid of the phrases such as "self-actualization", "self-discovery" and "self-fulfillment". They simply still see capitalism as a necessary evil. Leftists in the West are also obsessed with equal distribution of wealth in society, without an iota of concern about "creating the wealth" in society by maximizing liberty for each individual. Misery is the only logical and necessary result of all the socialist ideologies centered on "equality of income/wealth".
So "equality of opportunity" is actually a misnomer, for opportunity only implies freedom. The so called "equality before the starting line" is a deceptive and misleading concept, adopted by many Chinese nowadays. They are obsessed with "equality before the starting line" and "equality at the end line". They have yet to realize that they are all barking the wrong tree.
No one is born with ability and talent exactly equal to another. Therefore, in a free market and just society, no one should be equal in his or her achievements with any other. As a necessary result, their own reward should definitely NOT be equal. This is why in America, for example in NBA, you have such title/award as the "Most Valuable Player", for in a just and free society, people recognize that someone's contribution to certain causes and professions is more than others. There is simply no such thing as equality before the starting line, for starting line itself implies government artificially replacing God as the judge of individual values. That is what I call "evil". "Freedom of opportunity", NOT "Equality of opportunity" is the true state of a just society.
To artificially belittle the great and elevate the small and mediocre is a sure way toward self-defeat and creation of a meaningless, nihilistic/boring society. To recognize the great as great and the small as small is to tell the truth, to follow God. Hence, I hereby truthfully declare:
"I am only equal with others before God as a human being. And I am only equal with others before the law as a citizen of the United States. Besides that, I am not equal, and not willing to be equal with my fellow individuals. I value only self-fulfillment and will feel no guilt whatsoever and no shame wherever it may take me."