Deciphering ‘Collective Responsibility’

Collective Responsibility

The suggested topic heading is:-

“Collective Responsibility”

accordingly, I offer the following:-

Collective responsibility

let us examine the term,

firstly then the word responsibility

is it about a response?

Might it be about something that’s done again? Thereby possibly highlighting the first two letters:- re-,

might it be asking or indicating how one responds?

At the end of the day, what EXACTLY is a responsibility? Who or what provides the criteria by which we might measure this phenomena?

What parameters, if any, do we use in order to delineate, or place boundaries on our responsibilities?

We might now move on to the word Collective, this word implies a choice, referring to the part of the word that says “lective”,

then the prefix- “co”, often indicating togetherness, or with.

Together then, the two words, “collective responsibility”, might imply “choices” (electives”, which we make in conjunction with others.

This brings to mind a single word:-

“consensus” !

Often throughout our  (humanities) “recorded history”, there is a lot of forced, might that be enforced collective responsibility ?

There are also recorded instances of collective responsibility which appear to have been voluntarily entered into.

Humans, could indeed work together, however because we are human we are constantly looking for either the catch, or, how we as individuals might benefit from this alleged cooperation.

The “what’s in it for me” syndrome.

I remember a quote, now I’m not sure which American president it was that said it:-

” ask not what the country can do for me , but ask instead what can I do for my country?”

using this as a basis one might alternatively ask:-

not how can the rest of Mankind help me, but instead, ask how might I in my small way help others?

This more inclusive thought might offer the beginnings of something we might refer to as collective responsibility.

Submitted by

Working in the Old ways



An unpaid debt?

Collective Responsibility

Do you, like me, find yourself questioning whether we are precipitously close to tipping our planetary home beyond a point of no return sometime soon? A point upon which nature would casually shake us off as a dog might shake off water after an outing into a lake?

I have been a keen follower of world events for many years now. Thanks to the Internet we are more aware than ever of the relentless destruction and over exploitation of our world’s natural resources that is happening every day. Resources that it is dubious that we could ever rightfully claim ownership of in the first place. As we endlessly continue to exploit and consume I find myself forced to consider the question: When might this colossal debt need to be paid back?

Rather than seeing ourselves as the almightily powerful and rightful owners of this ball of spinning mass in outer space, I am wondering if all along we have merely been trustees tasked with keeping it in good working order for the benefit of all life that exists upon it?

It is apparent to me that nature has her own means to make us take note and consider our position. One might even wonder whether she has already started to do so. But will we take heed in time? There is no greater danger to humankind right now than the existential threat of self-destruction. I am not at all convinced that the majority of my  fellow humans across the globe have yet realised just how serious this is. Right now, I’m not even sure if it is possible to find a way back out of this dead end, but we would be absolute fools to not even bother to try!

Every day I am grateful to this planet for providing me with the resources I need to stay alive and be this entity that I call ‘me’. Every day that I continue to see nature abused for profit or greed I remain determined to do what I can, in my own small way, to at least try and change what might otherwise be an inevitable outcome. There is too much on the line right now, we owe this to future generations surely?

With this in mind, the future is not looking like a great place to be right now. If we somehow manage to avoid the ever present risk of nuclear war in the first instance then there is likely to be even greater inequality and competition for resources in the not too distant future. If we already look bad for our selfish ways now then what might we look like when there is more to feed and less to feed them? This truly is a recipe for disaster and it will take the utmost will and determination to have any hope of changing this.

This will not be an easy task, the most intelligent species on the planet is unfortunately not worthy of that title. Ignorance and greed abound. This job will require some help, if you have a care in the world like me perhaps you might join me and the other contributors to this site and we can open an organic discussion as to how we might restore some balance back into the World?  If I didn’t believe in my ability to cause change I would have not even bothered to write this. And if you did not in some way believe in what I have written you would probably not even bothered to read this far.

The collective power of determined individuals should not be understated. As a collective we have more power than we realise. I hope that you will take this opportunity to participate in the solution rather than the problem. Perhaps you already have some clear ideas about where our species has gone wrong in the past, and on that basis how we might avoid making similar mistakes in the future? If you would like to contribute to this site with your own blog posts on the theme of ‘Collective Responsibility’ then please get in touch. If you have any other ideas, comments, suggestions, feedback or anything else to offer then any help is welcome. Whatever brought you here, I hope you now leave with a bit more to think about than when you arrived…

If you would like to subscribe for more discussion and articles like this please use the link provided. Thank you.