Lesson 092: Managing hasty decisions
TV Series: Star Trek - The Next Generation
Season/Episode: 5/13 ('The Masterpiece Society')


When the genetic engineered colonists of an alien world meet the crew of the Enterprise and learn of other worlds and civilizations, many voice their wish to leave their own world to experience the unknowns and the discoveries of non-genetically engineered life.

However, in a genetically engineered world, each member plays a vital role in society and the absence of even a few will disrupt the stability of the colony, perhaps even leading to its destruction.

As the restless members of the society gather to voice their strong desire to leave the planet, in spite of the consequences to the planet, their leader asks them to wait for at least 6 months, to help their society in adapting to their departure.

As this plea falls on deaf ears, Capt. Picard steps in to voice his concern that in the past 5 days, with the arrival of the Enterprise and her crew, the people of this world have only experienced the superficial side of life outside their planet. As emotions are running high, Capt. Picard asks the people wishing to leave the planet to take adequate time to weigh the true impact and consequences of their decisions first, before committing themselves to leaving their world.


Haste makes waste is a fine proverb, leading at times to nothing but sheer disaster.

We have all experienced, at one time or another, the incredible urge to respond to something immediately, with great passion. We may have received a communiqué (text message, email, letter, phone call, etc.), observed a certain gesture from someone, overheard a comment, or been eyewitness to an incident occur, which caused us to have an immediate, passionate reaction to respond with vim and vigor. DON'T DO IT!

In almost all such scenarios, our passionate reaction almost always blinds us from seeing beyond our narrow tunnel vision view of the situation. More often then not, we are blinded from the real truth of the matter.

While it is in the nature of some humans to be mean, sarcastic, spiteful, and a dozen other malevolencies, it is quite possible that in our haste, we have criminalized the other party with these traits, when in actuality they are not guilty of any wrong doing. It is only our misperception of the other that led us to want to crucify them.

The only way to correctly respond in these situations is to allow for the transition of time. Time is our only recourse. Let the matter and the dust settle. When cooler heads prevail, then can we really see and gauge the good from the bad, the truth from the lie, and avoid making any serious mistake in judgment.

Capt. Picard's advice to wait and weigh the consequences of leaving one's home world is just as viable for us in such situations as the heat-of-the-moment decisions to leave our jobs, friends and families, or in retaliating incorrectly against those whom we believe have wronged us, but who in reality are not guilty of anything.

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