THE MERIT SYSTEM
By Dr. Lawrence Wilson
© January 2015, L.D. Wilson Consultants, Inc.
This article is a reminder that good thoughts, good words, and good deeds always bring merit and rewards.
Merit means that at a deep level of your being, your thoughts, words and actions bring you joy and pleasure. In other words, merit is a deep joy of the soul.
Rewards are tangible, physical opportunities, things, people and other benefits or objects that come your way as a result of your efforts to think, speak and act in the finest manner possible in every possible situation.
Your reward might just be to continue to survive, or it could be much more. So merit and rewards are a large and wide-ranging subject.
IS THERE PUNISHMENT, ALSO, FOR THE OPPOSITE TYPES OF THOUGHTS, WORDS AND ACTIONS?
Yes. Sloppy, lazy, careless, malicious and even ignorant thoughts, words and deeds result in problems, both at deep levels and at superficial or more physical levels. It may take years for the “punishment” or consequences of your thoughts, words and deeds to reach you, but it will occur.
TRUTH, A BASIC GOOD
In terms of merit and reward, truth, all by itself, is a wonderful thing that is amply rewarded when you seek it, ask for it, speak about it, and share it widely.
A pernicious lie that is common in modern society is that there is no truth. This is not correct. Truth exists, of course. If you jump off a cliff, you will fall down. That is a truth. There may be exceptions, if you are held by a rope, for example, but that does not change the basic truth of jumping off a cliff.
While this may seem like a simplistic example, the principle is the same for everything. There is truth in this world. As you learn more about a subject, you may have to adjust your understanding of truth, but truth is real.
Truth converges. An important principle that is really a result of the reality of truth is that truth always converges. This means that everything do with with a particular subject – meaning the truth about the subject – must correlate and form a whole or a oneness.
This means that if one person says the truth is one thing, and another says the truth is something else, there are only two possibilities. Either the two people mean the same thing, and it is a semantic problem, or one of the people is wrong. For more on this subject, please read Truth on this website.
THE IDEA OF WORK
The idea of work is very closely related to the idea of merit. Merit comes from working at something, no matter what it is. This is why it is good to work diligently at whatever you are doing, even taking out the garbage. Try to do it well, completely, faithfully and happily, as much as you can.
It does not matter where you find yourself working. It is still best to work diligently at whatever you are given to do. This even includes being a good “slave” or servant. If that is your lot, then do it well.
Thinking to yourself that your job, your marriage, or even your development program is not perfect is not an excuse for doing a poor job at it. Keep doing as good a job at it as you can, and you will be rewarded. Do it sloppily and problems will eventually occur. In some cases, you will have to redo it, which is a huge waste of your time.
Working diligently is actually an easy way to obtain more merit. R. Buckminster Fuller, one of the men who inspired me to do this website, loved to say, “The world responds to your initiative”. This means that working at something pays off, even if the payoff is unusual.
Working “hard”. Working diligently does not mean to be a martyr, or to ignore your health, for example. Work diligently, but not “hard” so you harm yourself. In fact, this way you will be better at your job, as a marriage partner, with your family, and with everything else you undertake.
Sayings about work. There are many phrases that teach the principle of working diligently. A few that I learned are:
1. As you sow, so shall you reap. This is a farming analogy that is used in the Old Testament of the Bible.
2. Benjamin Franklin wrote in Poor Richard’s Almanac that “Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise”. (However, if you are on a develoment program, be sure to get plenty of sleep and rest.)
3. The early bird gets the worms.
4. The parable of the ten talents in the New Testament of the Bible.
5. “Do unto others (and to yourself) as you would have others do unto you.” This is from the New Testament of the Bible. The Old Testament says it in reverse – “Do not do unto others (or to yourself) that which you do not want others to do unto you”.
WHO PRACTICES THE MERIT SYSTEM?
Schools used to practice it quite faithfully, and it is a good lesson for any child to learn. Today, merit is often not rewarded enough in school. This is part of the stupid attempt to equalize all people and avoid “offending” anyone.
It is possible to treat all children with love and honor, but still clearly reward merit. Abandoning the merit system is just one reason I do not suggest sending any child to school today. Other reasons are safety, especially for girls, and that the material being taught is often tainted or altered to make it politically correct. This is the same thing as lying. Also, children learn crudeness, rudeness, pornography and more from the cell phones, the little friends and sadly, even now and then from the teachers.
Instead, I suggest homeschooling all children, if at all possible. New teaching and learning materials make this much easier today for all parents, regardless of your educational level or background.
The military still practices the merit system, and must practice it or they will fall apart. Here, too, politics has entered and at times gets in the way. However, generals have usually earned their stripes or the army falls apart.
Companies and other organizations often, if they are smart, reward merit very well. These are the leaders in their field. Companies that simply promote the son or daughter of the boss, or that promote based on one’s years of service, usually do not survive or do not do as well.
WHO DOES NOT PRACTICE THE MERIT SYSTEM TODAY?
Sadly, universities do not reward merit nearly as much as they did in the past. It is one reason I do not suggest attending most colleges. Better to learn online and not waste your time and money on most of the (politically correct) colleges and universities.
Parents, too often, do not reward merit enough in their children. This causes one to end up with a confused, angry, spoiled and mentally weak child. It is your choice, parents.
Government welfare and government health care programs usually do not reward merit, or work. In fact, some brag that they treat everyone “equally”, as though this is the only fair way to do it. It is not fair to those who work diligently to find a job, work diligently to care for their children properly, and work diligently on their health.
In fact, this is one of the most important problems with all government health and welfare programs, and the reason that most of them make people worse. This problem is often called perverse incentives. This is just another way to say that these programs do not support the merit system.
In contrast, private welfare, private charity and private or free market healthcare, also called fee for service, do not suffer from the problem of perverse incentives nearly as much. As a result, these tend to be more effective, more efficient and tend to cost much less.
WHAT IS THE LAW OF CAUSE AND EFFECT?
It is the exact same thing as I have discussed in this article. It basically states that merit is real, so that as you do unto yourself and unto others, so it will be done unto you.
WHAT IF I AM INVOLVED WITH A PERSON OR PROJECT THAT I KNOW IS NOT A GOOD ONE
This same law or principle states that you are responsible if you are an accomplice or even a friend to someone or something that is not good. This is why, for example, the United States should not have good relations or ties with a nation such as Cuba or Red (communist) China. Having all our products made in China is not good, even if they are cheaper and even if they were better.
I know this is not strictly free market capitalism, but it is the truth about the situation. America is paying the price right now for this mistake with a serious loss of jobs, and with other problems.
NUTRITIONAL BALANCING AND DEVELOPMENT ARE PART OF THE MERIT SYSTEM
Any program or regimen that forces a person to follow rules and restrictions to improve their health can be viewed as part of the merit system. In other words, spending the time and energy necessary to buy the right food, cook your food properly, go to bed early, and do the healing and development procedures is part of the merit system.
This is a hidden benefit of development, as compared to just running to the doctor and popping a pill for your health problems.
TYPES OF FAULTY THINKING, FAULTY SPEAKING AND FAULTY ACTION
WHAT IF YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT TO THINK, TO SAY OR TO DO?
Ignorance is actually not a good excuse, although it is better to be ignorant than to be malicious. This means that it is better to simply not know how to act, speak or think, than it is to intentionally deceive or somehow harm others with your thoughts, words, and deeds.
Young children are sometimes excused from having bad thoughts, words and deeds because they are somewhat ignorant. However, it is a parents’ job to teach children how and what to think, how and what to say, and how to act or behave.
If a child is so unfortunate as to not learn this from his parents, then that child will need to work harder by himself or herself to learn this. Ignorance is not an excuse, in other words, as one grows up and reaches adulthood.
What about arrogance? Arrogance is a faulty way of thinking in which one believes that one knows when, in fact, one is ignorant. It is quite harmful because it blinds a person to the truth. It also often results in speech and action that is quite harmful, even though one does not fully realize the harm one does.
Arrogance is found commonly in teachers, doctors, politicians and others in positions of power. These are people who enjoy status, money, and power, so it “goes to their head” and they begin to really believe they have all the answers when they do not. As a result, they do much more harm than those who are simply ignorant and know or sense they are ignorant.
Another type of faulty thinking, speaking and behaving is to have an ulterior motive. This is deception and being “out of integrity”, in all cases.
Having an ulterior motive with your thoughts, words or deeds may not be quite as bad as being malicious, but it is not a good thing.
Examples of ulterior motives that affect peoople’s thoughts, words and deeds are:
- Mainly taking an interest in your appearance, sex or something else superficial, not relevant or out of integrity. For example, one may think, say and even act to assist college students. However, the deeper motive is not really to help them, but to meet sexy young men or women.
- Going along with the crowd, and not listening to your own wisdom and judgment.
- Doing what appears to be good, even when you know it does not work and therefore is not really good.
- Focusing on whether your thoughts, words and deeds are making you money. This one is very common, sadly.
- Thinking, speaking and behaving in ways you know will help you hold on to your position, your status or your power in society, in your family, among your friends or at work.
- Behaving in ways that upset others. This is called Energy Vampirism. Please read about it.
- Thinking, speaking or acting in ways that just attract attention to yourself, or to someone else, or something else. This is not the same as doing good, although many people confuse the two. Some call this “prayer in public”. It is spoken of in the Bible.
To read more about this problem, a helpful article is Integrity on this site.
Maliciousness is when you derive a little pleasure or couldn’t care less if you think, speak or act badly. This is very common.
Some people dream about, speak about or act out cheating, lying, stealing, raping, beating up, murdering, humiliating, deceiving or otherwise harming another person, an animal, a plant or even just the soil of the earth.
Maliciousness is the worst way to act, in terms of merit. Keep this in mind, please! Among some groups and individuals, maliciousness is rewarded and thought to be fun, exciting, and it can be pleasureable in the short term. It is about “putting others down”, which can make you feel better, superior, smarter or just more clever.
Maliciousness is sometimes taught in schools, businesses, and the professions, sadly. Do not do this! You will be the one harmed, in the long run. Not only will people hate you, but you bring to yourself what you put out.
The Biblical statement that “you will reap as you sow” is true. Maliciousness in any form sets you up for punishment of the worst kind. Often it will occur in kind – meaning the same offence will be done to you, sooner or later.