Guidelines: Strength in Numbers


By Simon Ambit

Gaggles, pods, prides and folds. What is one thing that all of these have in common? Different species who have found strength in uniting together.

A pride of lions is typically made of several multi-generational related females and a few adult males. The lion has found the social aspect of the pride to be highly beneficial. Living together as a pride also allows them to be more effective hunters, as some develop skills for chase and cornering, while others focus on the harvest.

Living in pods, the whale family travels together. They often hunt and migrate together as well as share protection and care of their young. Whales often communicate in tones and frequencies that have been found to vary and be unique to a specific pod.

The gaggle is a cluster of geese that is not in flight. While in flight, the same group of geese is termed to be a skein. I find the the V formation of a skein of geese to be very interesting. According a study performed in 1970, each bird can achieve reduced drag and thus increase their potential range by 71%!

Even the meek and mild sheep have found that there is safety in numbers. The fold is a pen used for temporarily holding and housing sheep and is a place of refuge for the vulnerable sheep. The fold offers protection and security from predators and storm. It is often watched over by the shepherd.

Like these examples from the animal kingdom, we humans have found there is strength in functioning together. It may be working together as different departments to accomplish a workplace deadline. It may be coming together as students to complete a chemistry lab assignment or counseling together as a family to find a solution or overcome an obstacle. Like the pride of the lion, we assume different roles based on our particular skill set and each one of these individual parts is crucial to the survival of the whole. In our families, workplace groups and social circles, let us not forget that together we are all better.

With particular focus on the family unit, do things together as a family. Socialize together, eat together, work together, laugh and cry together, play together and pray together. It doesn’t have to always be big things, take time to do the little things together. Take your kids with you to the hardware store, walk to the mailbox and get the mail with your sweetheart in hand. Share your gains and pains with one another; for when love is shared it increases, when sorrow is shared it is lessened. Watch the sun go down, roast a marshmallow, make a paper airplane, color a picture, etc. The task isn’t as important as the people we are with. Life is good, find strength in your family.

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