“Go to the people. Learn from them. Live with them. Love them. Start with what they know. Build with what they have. But the best of leaders when the job is done, when the task is accomplished, the people will all say we have done it ourselves.”

Lao Tzu, 604 B.C.

Another cool wise commentary on what good leadership is about, especially for an oppressed group like Deaf people.

Reflections:
1) What would “Going to Deaf people” mean? “Live with them”? Does that mean seeing first handed everyday their glories as well as their misery?
2) “Learn from Deaf people” and “Love Deaf people” – meaning what? Seeing them as true equals? And caring about them as you care about yourself and your own? What does that mean in terms of how we express our thoughts and ideas and in which language(s)?
3) “Start with what Deaf people know” and “Build with what they have”? What do Deaf people uniquely know? What do they have to build with? Knowledge of being Deaf, what it’s like to use ASL 24/7, our networking expertise, our storytelling, arts, high expertise on eyeing? Build what? curriculums? Programs? Foundations to sustain our future generations? Art projects for the whole world to learn and enjoy from?
4) Who will be the “best of leaders”? We will know when the WHOLE Deaf community says “WE ALL HAVE DONE IT TOGETHER!”. Right?

YOur thoughts?