Many of you reading this may have heard of the expression “The whole is greater than the sum of the parts“. The first person I heard utter those words was the man behind this website, my father, the Reverend Dr Sidney Bindemann. It is an expression that has remained in my psyche throughout life and when, this morning, I read a section from a book by the psychologist Alfred Adler, it suddenly took on an even greater significance.
I would like to share with you that significance and a definition of life which for me is one of the most profound definitions I have ever read. I also believe it truly helps to explain why we human beings urgently need to recognise the planet, that we share with the ‘natural world”, as a “community”, especially as the definition taken on even greater meaning when it is combined with “The whole is greater than the sum of the parts“.
Any form of life, be it a tree, an insect, a bird, a fish, a primate, is a part of the whole, or even the ‘community’ that we share. As Sir David Attenborough has so passionately spoken about throughout his life on this planet, if we continue to remove life without controls, we disrupt that ‘whole’, through imbalance and we threaten our very being.
Therefore, surely, it is imperative that we continue to build our community in such a way that we ensure all the ‘parts’ remain in existence in order to contribute to the whole, given that “life is: contributing to the whole”.