Our Moral Compass: The Power of One Extraordinary Person

“One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man.”

-Elbert Hubbard

If you ever have been to Disney’s Epcot in Orlando there is a ride called Spaceship Earth which is the Big Giant Sphere that you come face to face with as you enter the park. Within this 8-10 min ride you are taken on a journey from the time of the Caveman to today which shows how evolved as a species. Along the way you see how we started acquiring knowledge and then learned to record it on cave walls followed by paper written by hand that soon were transcribed by monks into books. Then with the invention of the printing press everything changed. A machine could produce several times over the amount of newspapers that a whole staff could have produced. This led to computers to replace people who ran those machines. Were these discoveries time efficient? Yes. But I think that it also replaced the extraordinary talents and creativity of many men and women in the process.

American writer Elbert Hubbard contended that although one machine could the work of fifty men, it could never do the work of one extraordinary man. And you know he is right. When we come across extraordinary individuals they are the type of people who have some extremely good or special quality about them. They are unique in their own right. When you use a machine it takes away that sense of wonder and essentially that ambiance or newness because all it is is a carbon copy of the original. There are many designed exactly like it in case it breaks down. Easily replaceable. To me where machines are, people are not. There is something special about each and every one of us. We each have a certain talent and skillset that we have to offer the world along with a set of values that makes us who we are. You can’t get that from a machine. They don’t have a moral compass. But you do and that is what makes you extraordinary.

What does this quote mean to you and how can you apply today’s message towards defining/refining your own moral compass?

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