The paper will focus on personal and social changes in the lives of two characters, Hem and Haw, and how the changes that take place depend on morality and ethics. Very often, people are afraid of change and do everything to keep the same order of things as before.
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The time, however, is moving forward, and conditions are changing. Those who cannot adapt and move on are left behind. They will only have two choices: one is to realize that change is inevitable and much needed, the other is to stay the same and be forgotten or left behind.
Once again, this was the day of contemplating for Hem and Haw. It was raining almost every day now, and the nearby river was getting dangerously filled up. Haw was more reasonable and kept saying that the environment was changing, and they must do something to make sure that they would be safe in the future. Hem was careless and did not worry.
He kept asking: “What changes do you want to see?” The world was an entity constantly moving and evolving in some form or another. Changes must be made according to the outside environment and the internal processes inside each person. Haw knew they had to move on to a different place or somehow modify their current place of stay in order to meet the conditions that weather placed before them.
Haw would reply that the highest morality states that the truth must be accepted and followed no matter what, even though there are sometimes exceptions from the rules. Wanting to change his friend, Haw would ask: “Why is change important?” As usual, Hem did not care and wanted to keep the old life.
But Haw knew that change was important because everything that happened had begun with some form of change, as it seemed to define life. Either it was a conscious effort or the environment exhibited certain conditions that led to a change. Only a philosophical view on change could help. As such, Haw started thinking about morality and how it applies to change.
His thought was that a person’s character qualities are important to himself/herself and the people who s/he is in cooperation with (Johnson, 2012). He knew that change is important because it leads to the evolution of an individual. It is also critical that the kinds of changes are noted and the person adjusts to them accordingly.
In social views, people must do what is necessary in relation to the greater good. Haw began thinking about building rafts, houses in the trees, or some form of fortifications to keep the river out, as the water was rising rapidly, and the rains did not stop for a week.
Meanwhile, Hem became so careless that he let all his supplies and other useful things be taken by the overflowing water. One morning, when the thunder and lightning were making the weather even worse, Haw asked: “What are the implications of refusing to change?” Hem just made a hand gesture for Haw to leave him alone. But Haw persisted; he explained that unless people change, they will have no future.
People will always feel inconvenient due to the environmental changes and conditions that regulate existence, but nothing is as precious as someone’s life which can be lost because of a refusal. A person not willing to change will slowly die inside, their confidence will dwindle, and no one will be able to rely on that person, as they will be left behind.
The same can be said about self respect and negative personal influences. The need for change is required, so in case someone refuses to change and adjust to the new conditions, it will be a significant fallback for the person, his/her surrounding, and eventually, the bigger society.
Even though it might seem that there is no direct connection between the society and individuals, whatever changes happen in a person, lead to a shift and change in society. The public life is significantly affected by the decisions made by individuals, especially in cases of morality and ethics (Brandt, 2013). Haw understood this and decided to learn everything about ground water, elevation, and world oceans’ movements.
First off, he built a house on a tree, far off the ground, as he hoped this would save him. But one night, a loud thunder strike woke him up, and a question appeared in his head: “Do you expect resistance to your changes?” He could not answer because he never dealt with change. All his life, everything was the same.
As an answer, the tree started leaning from side to side, as the water had loosened the earth between the roots. The answer came itself: yes, Haw knew there would be resistance. An individual character or even the surrounding environment might be resistant to change, as was the case with Haw and his tree house.
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A person could believe in something so strongly that after seeing how the outside environment has changed, the internal character might not want to change. Haw did not want to believe that this was happening to him, but now he saw that he must stop the resistance within himself and focus on the resistance nature was placing in front of him.
He started studying even more, engineering, carpentry, buoyancy laws, ship building… As he was carving out a tree trunk, he thought: “What are the ethical implications of change?” The reoccurring thought was that both individuals and societies govern themselves according to the rules and laws of morality, ethics, and more specifically, virtue, which play an important role in the lives of people and nations.
A change in ethics will either make a person better or set him/her back in their morality (Rohlf, 2010). That is why Haw was trying to convince Hem that they must change themselves and think of an escape. Haw understood that people and societies were concerned with the highest moral standards, as they became very close to the person’s heart and soul.
His idea was that the higher the ethical consideration, the better the change and the outcome. To sum up his thoughts, he asked himself: “What are the lessons that you want to learn from this story?” It taught that valuable lessons in changes were needed, but the great principle that ruled everything was morality and ethics (Gort, 2002).
As Haw was floating away on his boat, he saw the dam collapsing and water engulfing everything in the forest. He learned that changes are needed to survive, not only physically, but mentally as well. Peoples’ moral health is key to evolution and development of a person.
Now, he was deciding what image of change management he would be using and why? First, the most necessary adjustments must be understood. After familiarizing with them, they must be implemented into everyday life. The ethical goals and criteria must be strong, in order for changes to be managed properly, and provide the largest benefit for the individual. It must be a life commitment.
Brandt, A. (2013). Morality and Health. New York: Routledge.
Gort, J. (2002). Religion, Conflict and Reconciliation: Multifaith Ideals and Realities, New York: Rodopi.
Johnson, O. (2012). Ethics: Selections from Classical and Contemporary Writers. Boston: Cengage Learning.
Rohlf, M. (2010). Immanuel Kant. Retrieved from https://plato.stanford.edu/archives/fall2010/entries/kant/