Living by the Golden Rule
One of the basic building blocks of human society is what often is called “the golden rule” – that is, the principle of treating other people as we ourselves want to be treated. I was introduced to the idea as part of my faith foundation – to “do to others as you would like them to do to you.” I soon learned that this idea is found at the core of many of the world’s other major religions and in ethical traditions as well.
Our Adventist HealthCare RISES Values can be thought of as ways in which the golden rule is found in our work and practice. We respect others as we would want to be respected – for instance by honoring individual preferences, including cultural, spiritual or individual considerations. The integrity driving our actions parallels the integrity we expect from the people who impact us. We serve with the compassion and care that we pray would be extended to us. We strive to exceed expectations in all that we do, and we hope that others share our commitment to excellence. Finally, we are careful stewards of the resources entrusted to our care, just as we rely on others to be careful with resources.
The golden rule empowers our efforts to be a welcoming and hospitable community – committed to health, wellness, and healing. Our Vision of providing a world-class patient experience to every person, every time is motivated, at least in part, by knowing that this service is exactly what we would appreciate for ourselves. In seeking to provide the quality care that enables healing in body, mind and spirit, we are also affirming the way we would want care for our whole person.
Modern healthcare is extremely complex. There are so many important inputs that shape the care we bring our patients. There are intentional approaches that shape how we extend care, guide how we focus resources, and inform how we evaluate success. But each of the policies and practices that we have chosen are deeply rooted in our Mission.
The golden rule is not just a slogan but helps articulate the Values at the heart of our organization. We are known and understood by our commitment to care for our patients and their families with respect, integrity, service, excellence and stewardship.
Thich Nhat Hanh, who passed away recently at the age of 95, was a global spiritual leader whose life and work was an inspiration to people of many faiths. He affirmed the principles of honoring others with the respectful understanding you would wish to be extended to yourself when he wrote, “We have to find ways to nourish and express our compassion. When we come into contact with the other person, our thoughts and actions should express our mind of compassion.” To have the mind of compassion, expressed in all that we do, affirms our appreciation of the golden rule.