Wise Words

I’ve started a collection of wise words that relate to mediation, even though many are not about mediation.  If you’ve heard others, please let me know.

Tennessee Williams (in Elia Kazan's autobiography, “A Life”, 1988)
"There are no 'good' or 'bad' people. Some are a little better or a little worse but all are activated more by misunderstanding than malice. A blindness to what is going on in each other's hearts.

And  paraphrased by David Maraniss in “Into the Story”
   Human frictions are caused more by misunderstandings than malice.

Emma Sky, British adviser to General Ray Odierno in Iraq
“… in order to influence them, I had to be willing to be influenced myself.”

President John F. Kennedy (Inaugural Address)
“So let us begin anew -- remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness”

Chogyam Trungpa, “Shambala, The Sacred Path of the Warrior”
“Aggression is the source of our problems, not the solution.”

Dalai Lama
“Aggression begets aggression.”

Tony Piazza, Mediator
“I tell the parties and attorneys,’this is the risk if you don’t settle; this is the reward if you do settle.  What’s fair is not on the table.’”

“An adversarial system based on the best possible result for a client results not in justice but strife, misery and warfare.  Lawyers need a wider view of best possible result as what will make your client healthier and happier.”

David Burt, DuPont Corporate Counsel
“Litigation is unbusinesslike.  It is more natural for businesses to seek agreement through mediation tools than to engage in direct conflict.”

Randy Wulff, Mediator
“Most people, after going through the mediation, are not convinced they were wrong, but are convinced they are not quite as right as they thought, and some flexibility to account for that monetarily is a good thing.”