Unity is fostered by understanding

A failed organization is a result of the inability to construct a jigsaw puzzle. Such failures could include familial marriages, institutional organizations or national governments. There is no assumption that can be acceptable in the process of constructing a jigsaw puzzle. The only reason that causes failure in the entire world is the inability to understand the principle of solving a jigsaw puzzle. There are several methods of constructing a jigsaw puzzle, but leading to one goal, which is achieved by understanding. This portrays the perfect description of puzzle-building.

A jigsaw puzzle requires patience when putting together several components, meant to shape what eventually communicates significance. An inexperienced puzzle handler cannot effectively construct the interlocking pieces to produce the required shape. Preconception can be the greatest obstacle, causing failure in jigsaw puzzle handling. But the most interesting aspect is that constructing a jigsaw puzzle requires logic. This is what guides a tenacious handler to eventually succeed in producing a required master picture.

Understanding implies appreciating reasons why each object would be shaped differently from other objects. None of those objects needs reshaping. They are peculiarly shaped and designed to fulfil their individual purpose in completing the required masterpiece.

From this reality we see understanding being a vital guide towards achieving the required result. The same experience can be utilized for producing a piece of perfect choral music from talented singers. The choir director has to understand singers according to their individual tonal voices and abilities. This is the starting point, for a choir director.

If not organized according to the proper arrangement of the vocal tones of each choral participant, that choir becomes very unpleasant to listen to. The choral director might not be capable of singing as effectively as any of the choral participants. But he must be a good listener to appreciate which part fits which participant.

Failed organizations are a result of dictatorship. Imagine a choir director who dictates to a soprano to sing bass or vice versa. That produces a confused dissonance, unpleasant for the audience. Dictatorship describes those assuming to know what they don’t know. A dictator forces his/her will on other people, requiring them to perform according to his will.

Dictators can be found in every sphere of life. As a matter of illustration, let us consider a marital arrangement. Suppose a young man proposes for marriage, with a preconceived desire, over a young woman. The young man would then expect standards he considered admirable from his mother.

He, accordingly, preconceives that his fiancee should also possess the same standards. The two would be getting married without understanding each other. As with most couples, the two may have observed such differences before marriage. But they would have chosen to ignore, hoping things would work out along the way.

To their disappointment, things fail to work according to their expectations. This leads to another disastrous marriage, leaving children in disarray. Dictatorship is not limited to those in leadership positions. It can also be practised by those who are led. In ballroom dancing, everything flows according to the agreement in which the man conducts the swings.

A disastrous ballroom dancing takes place where, the woman attempts to dictate, rather than submit to the manly swings. The two may trip and fall badly and be injured, as long as they improperly coordinate their dancing practice. Every step should be methodically coordinated, for successful ballroom dancing. Marriage is an agreement between a man and a woman.

Anything short of an agreement would be rape, which is criminal, in civilized countries. A man who forces his organ into a woman is worse than a beast. In a mating season, animals cooperate well, as created to procreate in that manner. Why would a human, created in God’s image, force himself into a woman?

Rape cases are not always viewed as criminal in some cultures. Some marriages are sustained by rape, rather than according to the principle of understanding. I know of some Shona cultures where marriages are commonly handled by a committee of the aunties (Vana tete).

Those aunties would then instruct the young woman to submit to such bestial conduct by her husband. No wonder why our country produces politicians who treat people worse than animals. Such customs violate the principle of understanding.

A man may rape his niece, but that would be considered acceptable, according to such cultures. These matters comprise family secrets that are not supposed to be divulged to the general public, according to those Shona cultures. This describes patterns that are characterized by human rights violations.

We have heard Members of Parliament lambasting those said to be divulging national secrets, outside the country. Those MPs ought to be understood as behaving according to Zimbabwean cultural traditions. Hopewell Chin’ono is particularly hated and viewed as unpatriotic, for divulging national secrets outside the country. This comes from the assumption that such conduct would be violating our culture of preserving family secrets.

However, in this presentation, we will not consider the merits or demerits of keeping secrets indoors. Let us dwell on the aspect of understanding, being what should be necessary for healthy relationships. Dictatorship carries its origin from medieval practices that have left a trail of destruction throughout the ages. Only psychotics desire to maintain such practices.

Under normal conditions, history is necessary to avoid past mistakes. The present time is necessary to shape a pleasant future. This describes an evolution crafted in understanding so that eventually, wisdom prevails. Marriage ought to be fostered in understanding.  This may not necessarily require that marital arrangements should be according to one’s expectations.

When factoring in the principle of treating the other person as one would like to be treated, one removes dictatorship in marital arrangements. The starting point is on whether the person intended for marriage would be loved or not. Would there be understanding of her/his wishes, if loved? Then the last question addresses the sentiment of how those wishes could be fulfilled. Education is fundamental in every aspect of life.

Education is achieved by following four steps. The first is observation. A person can do well by observing how effective any subject can be handled. This is followed by asking questions. Observing alone, without asking questions causes assumptions to have understood where the opposite would be true. Thirdly, education entails reading extensively on the subject.

Information Technology has made information easily accessible through the internet. Lastly, but not least, comes the doing aspect. A person can follow through with three processes. But as long as unable to apply what is learnt, the person remains ignorant. Marriage can be highly successful to those engaging in it when desiring to succeed.

Dictators can certainly impede success in marriage, although some marriages have endured under dictatorships. Humanity cannot succeed in anything without understanding. We can relate with other people and succeed, whether in business or any other endeavour, only when appreciating the principle of understanding other people.

In their endeavour to restore troubled marriages, some pastors have harped on the aspect of conjugal rights, as advocated by Apostle Paul. That passage is often abused to mean what it doesn’t say. Without understanding and agreement, there is nothing workable in this life, including sexual orientation.

The husband should fulfil his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife. Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. I say this as a concession, not as a command” (1 Corinthians 7:3-6 NIV).

The advocates of this Scriptural construct often overlook what Paul said in verse 6: “I say this as a concession, not as a command”. Married couples are expected to understand the principle of doing unto others as one would like them to do unto him/her. The passionate intimacy of an individual should not override understanding in human relations.

Following the principle of solving a jigsaw puzzle, let us consider the process through which marriages ultimately come to fruition. Except for social media-driven interactions, the first level of intimacy starts with eye contact. Consider a situation where one would have never met the person before. But one’s eye contact with him/her gives a feeling of intimacy between the two of them. This is natural. It is a question of how to handle that.

That person could be a criminal or could be married to somebody else, which could lead to serious problems. The second test would be a need to communicate with that person, as long as looking for a partner for marriage. As leaders in marital involvement, men are expected to be listeners more than applying salesmanship techniques.

The voice quality, whether the person speaks slowly or fast could be another consideration, depending on the person’s tastes. Some people are not attracted to fast speakers, while others may not be attracted to slow speakers. That grants latitude in assessing areas of likes and dislikes.

The next level is grooming. What is the person’s attitude on matters of grooming, as you communicate? How willing are you, in putting up with such conditions? Temperaments, mannerisms and other characteristics can be understood during the process of communication.

Marriage could be recommended, if everything goes well, this far, which could take a year or more, before a marital decision is agreed to. Marriage entails a willingness to put up with another person’s weaknesses, regardless of how serious. Status or consideration of wealth or physical structure has no part in what leads to marriage.

Marriage is a consideration of being another person, even though being a different personality, with your own burdens as well. The sense of affinity commits the person to put up with another person’s weakness, aiming at improving his/her condition, for the better.

Marital failures are commonly caused by three obstacles: Firstly; pretending to be what the person is not. Secondly; Infidelity is when a person gets attracted to another, more than the one to whom marital vows were declared. Thirdly: Death, or any physical incapacitation, as to no longer interact with the other spouse.

Other than caused by death, or physical incapacitation, divorces can be minimized, as long as the fundamentals of understanding are followed. To Christian believers, prayer may facilitate mending relations. But, the principal factor in marital relationships is honest communication. The principle of understanding affects every facet of life.

When looking for employment, a smart person declines a job offer for which he/she feels not adequately qualified. However, this world interprets a smart person as one who tricks an employer into believing he would be qualified. That person does so; fully knowing to be unqualified for the job. This is Just as other employers promise what they are unable to provide.

In an ideal organization, there would be a manager whose integrity would be intact. That person would be able to fill posts with the right people for each respective post. This is different from a manager who fills posts according to how he personally benefits, against organizational objectives.

All problems of humanity are handled only by communication principles, leading to understanding and desired happiness. It is impossible for people to be happy without understanding. The principle of understanding is guided by the ability to listen and the ability to treat others as one would like to be treated. Anything else leads to an inevitable disaster.

The pieces of a jigsaw puzzle fulfil their purpose for a structure to be completed without fail. Other pieces may appear insignificant, and yet impossible for the entire structure to come out clearly without any one of them. A skilled individual in jigsaw puzzle construction can be commended for heroically achieving the production of the masterpiece.

God created humanity in a similar fashion. There is no human being created without a purpose in this life. It is only dictators who invalidate others, in such a way as to have caused disastrous consequences. Thank God Almighty; Jesus came so that the willing ones can now attain their original state for which God created them.

It is now possible to allow God to place each person, in his position, according to God’s master plan. The effective route to follow is that of effective communication, through understanding. Without understanding, nothing works in this world. Opportunities are at the disposal of every person who realizes that God put him/her on this planet for a purpose.

Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing relief to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. Most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long-awaited providential oasis of hope, in a simple conversational tone.

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