David and Goliath

In the well known story of David and Goliath, it has been traditionally believed that David was the underdog. In fact it was Goliath who stood no chance against David; David’s victory was a foregone conclusion. But the Israelites were so paralysed by their fear that they could not see it, even when the solution was given to them.

David was a slinger. Slingers were renowned for the incredible accuracy, and could easily kill someone from a distance of over a 100 meters. In the hands of an experienced slinger, a heavy stone could reach speeds of up to 160 km/h, with the stopping power of a .44 Magnum. The Romans actually had special tongs to remove the stones that embedded themselves in soldiers wounded by slingshots.

Goliath and the Philistine army never expected a slinger. Neither did it cross the Israelites’ mind to send one. Everyone was thinking of a hand to hand combat. For the Israelites, defeating Goliath was impossible. But it turned out to be perfectly possible; in fact it was easy, it took David just a few seconds to kill the giant, Goliath. We tend to feel comfortable with dogmas, the dominant ideas , assumptions, rules and conventions that everyone accepts without questioning, abides by and vociferously defends, no matter what. Solving a problem by looking at it from a new perspective or re-framing it requires courage, as it means letting go of the security generated by thinking in the same way the rest of the world thinks.Yet it is only when we discard the security of our established thinking patterns and preconceived notions, and re-examine problems from an entirely different view point, reframing them, that we can find solutions to problems that seem insurmountable.

It is only then, that we can defeat our Goliaths.