How to Deal with Enemies

Conflict surrounds us. We find it within ourselves, our families, our communities, our nation, and our world. Sometimes, there are winners and losers. Many times it is unclear what the result of the conflict is. But what is the source of all this conflict?

"People aren't against you, they are for themselves."

I heard this quote recently, and the answer (at least one answer) to the previous question became all too clear - self-interest. History has a never-ending supply of examples of people and groups that lie, steal, cheat, kill, scheme, and plot in the name of self-interest. Does this mean we should not seek to better ourselves? That self-interest is always a bad thing?

Enter an unexpected example: anime.

In this show, the young protagonist, Yukihira Soma, faces off in cooking battles a la over-the-top Iron Chef. The conflict is always heated. Opponents are insulting, diabolical, and utterly bent on totally destroying Soma. He always remains calm, using the insults as …