Why does power go to people's heads?
Why is it you can give a position of power to the most kindest and sweetest person, but in time that power changes that person for the worse, how does that happen as I have seen it happen to so many people.
It's human nature to be greedy and to control things. Those who are religious will say that human beings are sinful by nature. Those who are not religious may say that human beings are animalistic in nature and have an inner need for survival and conquest. Power and wealth go hand in hand. No one is immune to it.
Having said that, there are certain experiences, knowledge, and wisdom we can gain in our lifetime that could shiled us from such temptation. This is why it is usually easier for power to corrupt younger folk than older ones (at least usually).
Ego. I have seen a persons ego grow until they actually started to believe that what they said was true or right. It is good to believe in yourself it is not good to belive yourself. Run away ego has destroyed many lives.
When a person does not have power, they are (usually) forced to be more agreeable. But power gives people the prerogative to do as they please without having to consider how you feel about it. For many people, courtesy or power provide leverage.
As one of the other posters said, religion will normally tell you that that is man's natural state: to be self-centered instead of God-centered. A Christian is called to exercise love and kindness regardless of whether he has power or not, to not return evil for evil, and to use power for the benefit of his neighbor. This is a tall order, and Christians often fall short of this standard. On the other hand, many do strive to uphold those standards and it makes for a better world than it would be otherwise.
Lots of thoughts here, somewhat connected: Power is systemic. A system permits power to go to someone's head. The l'il "peons" don't speak up in time to keep power in check.
Someone mentioned control. That's key too. A person might not have faith that another person would exercise power fairly, so they want to retain control over their own situation by staying at the top. It's a form of fear and self-preservation.
Some men have feared women acquiring personal power because they thought they'd suddenly be trampled just as women were/are. For example, this was expressed in suffrage-era cartoons of women smoking cigars and treating men like dirt. Some didn't imagine that maybe power could take another form. Power WITH instead of power OVER.
Power can be wielded in a synergistic manner that benefits everyone. A big problem is that newcomers to power might not have adequately good models of power to follow.
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