I search the bookshelves for books on subjects near to my heart, on subjects I may be researching, on authors I have read before and enjoyed.
But, how many times have I been caught out by seeing a book, buy it, take it home and start reading it, and find it all too familiar? It is as if I have read the subject before, it all makes sense.
I look on my bookshelves for books by the same author, but I cannot see the book I have just purchased and finding so familiar.
Then I spot one, take it off the shelf. The covers are different, but the title is the same.
I compare my new book to the old, and they are both the same inside. The author or the publisher have just changed the cover. Maybe the author has added a few new words, a new section, but the book and contents are the same.
I have found in the past few months that as I was loosing weight, it would be best to take some dietary supplements, especially vitamin C due the all the travelling I make, and found a product called Berocca which I feel has had some beneficial effects upon me.
My brother-in-law, nearing the end of his life and as of yesterday in hospital with spreading cancer, has not been eating, fruits, meats, anything for weeks, and thus his body is lacking the nutrients it needs to exist, he has now mouth ulcers, his lips are dry, cracking and bleeding, his gums are in a bad way, a sure sign of scurvy, the lack of vitamin C. I remember my tablets, and we get him to start drinking the effervescent drink, and his condition seems to improve, even with the small amount he takes.
I search the shops here in Malaysia for the same product, as in this global society and market we live in today, it will be sold here as well as the UK, and eventually find it. The packaging has the same colours and artwork, but the box is a different shape, so I am drawn to compare the ingredients, the composition of the product itself, and guess what, they are different. The UK Berocca product has more ingredients, and the quantities of ingredients that each product share are different, yet the tablet looks the same.
This tablet is not the only product that I have eagerly purchased because I am familiar with them, used to, aware of in my home country of the UK, yet when I buy it in Turkey, Italy, China, Peru, they are different.
Cadbury’s chocolate seems to be totally different here in Malaysia then in the UK, due I am told to the hot climate, as the UK product would melt in the tropical weather of Malaysia.
In Italy, I eat pizza, and love it, yet in the UK after eating a pizza I suffer from indigestion.
KFC is different in Malaysia as it is in other countries although, like McDonald’s, the restaurants and menus look the same. They cater for local tastes and customs.
Some people exploit human nature to be comfortable with familiarity, our need to have what we are used to.
In China, the books of Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling are like in any country, very popular, so much so that a whole new industry has been born on creating new books with Harry Potter in the title, even having the same classic style of book cover. Apparently the list includes, “Harry Potter and the Hiking Dragon,” “Harry Potter and the Chinese Empire,” “Harry Potter and the Young Heroes,” “Rich Dad, Poor Dad and Harry Potter,” “Harry Potter and Leopard-Walk-up-to-Dragon,” “Harry Potter and the Big Funnel,” “Harry Potter and the Golden Armor,” “Harry Potter and the Crystal Vase,” and on and on.
So we have to be aware, that is to say, do not judge a book by its’ cover. Is it the real thing?.
We as human beings are like books, and people say they can “read people like a book”. We put on an outer covering, we hide behind a mask, we show a persona. a character we wish to show, and for the world and others judge us by.
Like books and products in different countries, different societies and cultures, will be changed to be appropriate, to be suitable and be acceptable, it is with us as human beings. We as humans can and do change.
A Managing Director of a large company will have to be strong, a leader, a decision maker when in the office hours, but if they use the same characteristics in the home, they will be and are in trouble. A nurse in a hospital has to be hard, decisive yet compassionate, but will act different when with their loved ones at home even if they stub their toe.
Yet, unlike a book or a product, we humans can change of our own free will, and we do. That is what makes humans what we are. We can and do change, we have choice if we so wish. That is what NLP teaches us to do, have choice to make changes, and to make changes.
So perhaps a person who has been hard, unforgiving, a tyrant throughout their lives can change at the end.
A person who has shown compassion, love and helped others thought their life in a caring profession, can become very demanding, and aggressive at the end.
It is said that a leopard cannot change its’ spots, perhaps not, but has it shown all its’ characteristics to us as an observer before? Have we seen or witnessed all the persona? Are we aware of all that is beneath the covers, the capabilities, personalities?
As a lasting thought, perhaps we should all look beneath our own covers, see ourselves as other people see us, before we judge others.