“All human societies make attempts to heal sick. Such attempts…”

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Welcome to a new category for Confident Voices!  

“Confident Quotations”!  Conceived by Jim Murphy!

“All human societies make attempts to heal the sick. Such attempts – though variously successful – indicate that humans are aware of the suffering of the sick person and that the sick person is an individual with a mind. The noble and underappreciated profession of nursing best exemplifies this human trait.” – Ajit Varki and Danny Brower, Denial: Self-Deception, False Beliefs, and the Origin of the Human Mind

A little bit about the source:  Denial is book with an interesting, if not unique, background.  Danny Brower died before publishing his idea, discussed once in a conversation and continued by Ajit Varki, that humans’ ability to deny the reality of death is a key factor in human evolution. The thesis has been probably correctly described as “unconvincing,” but the treatment is fascinating and scholarly, stimulating thought about highly significant issues.  The quotation comes in the fourth chapter, in which examples are given of how humans have an advanced theory of mind–Jim Murphy

We invite readers to submit quotations illustrating, promoting, or challenging the principles and issues covered in this blog.

Jim murphyJim Murphy has a solo consulting practice called Management 3000, focusing on organizational development and change management. Formerly he led the Massachusetts Bay Organizational Development Learning Group, was Human Resources Director for the City of Boston Assessing Department, and served as a consultant with the Boston Management Consortium.  His consulting practice includes management coaching as well as research and writing on employee relationships, leadership, healthcare and collaborative practices.  Having produced newsletters for several organizations  and being a frequent content writer for the”Confident Voices in Healthcare” blog, he is interested in writing and research opportunities, as we all consulting and coaching. www.manage2001.com   jim@manage2001.com



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3 Responses to “All human societies make attempts to heal sick. Such attempts…”

  1. Pingback: A Second Question for Creating the Ideal Healthcare Organization: Respect and Compassion

  2. Sylvia Burch says:

    I agree with Beth, and it is a very telling quote. The “care” in health care is being shut out by processes, regulatory requirements and lack of adequate staffing and usually the equipment to help with your care. Those of us who went into nursing because we care about those in our care, are met with huge challenges to practice as we wish – and we know our patients are all unique individuals with minds – who should be, and need to be, participants in their care. Patients are also feeling overwhelmed – wondering how they can get the care they need and deserve. The ACA certainly is not the answer – it is a growing part of the problem that existed already and wasn’t addressed.

  3. Hi Jim,
    Thanks for finding this interesting quote. It makes me wonder about the ‘care’ in health care, my role as a nurse, and how sometimes it feels like we are moving so fast that we may not be as attentive to others’ suffering as we should be or want to be. I think it ties into the privilege or ‘art’ of being a healthcare professional and this quote invites us to honor that.

What are your thoughts?