My Life as a Dog

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Natural vs. Unnatural


I've been doing some more reading these days. I was just enlightened by this paragraph from Scott Peck's book, The Road Less Traveled. I loved it and wanted to share it. It's a good argument for change when people say or believe that change is not possible.

"The tendency to avoid challenge is so omnipresent in human beings that it can properly be considered a characteristic of human nature. But calling it natural does not mean it is essential or beneficial or unchangeable behavior. It is also natural to defecate in our pants and never brush our teeth. Yet we teach ourselves to do the unnatural until the unnatural becomes itself second nature. In deed, all self-discipline might be defined as teaching ourselves to do the unnatural. Another characteristic of human nature - perhaps the one that makes us most human - is our capacity to do the unnatural, to transcend and hence transform our own nature."
- Scott Peck (The Road Less Traveled)

3 comments:

The Brannon Family said...

What? When did it become a bad thing to not brush your teeth or defecate in your pants? man, I am so behind! :-)

Thanks for the great quote! In all honesty, I love it! You know me, I just have to be a smart you know what!

Tropicanna said...

I like this quote a lot. I know people can change, particularly with the help of prayer and the atonement. The freedom to change is a huge blessing.

Anonymous said...

Dean and I listened to that book on tape a loooong time ago and I remember really liking it. I liked the principle that you have to be willing to go through pain to grow in life and that pain avoidance keeps people in stasis. (Am I right that that's from that book?)

I also think the question of whether people can change and whether and how they choose to change or not is one of the most fascinating questions in life.

Also, I have been considering giving up tooth-brushing, but maybe I can hang on a little longer.