Cooperation is, quite simply, working together. It is the combined labor of two or more people in moving a boulder, extinguishing a fire, saving a drowning person, hauling in a fishing net, or discovering DNA.
Participants often have differing values, motives, and ultimate needs. A common goal or process is not needed. Cooperation can be compartmentalized, with all participants unaware of the presence and participation of others. Cooperation is considered prosocial behavior, but participants could be working toward mutually incompatible goals or opposite ends.
The jungle is often metaphor for a dangerous, uncooperative environment. But the jungle treasures diversity in its economy, rewards collaboration, and builds skills to manage complexity. Live by the law of the jungle—it works in an immensely complex, natural system in which the various parts survive and thrive as much through cooperation as competition. In your jungle, maintain all the subtle checks and balances that ensure a robustly organic, vigorous economy and ecosystem.
The ego, hubris, machismo, and charisma of leaders have manipulated masses into cooperation through the ages. The power of this cooperation has plunged humankind into war and elevated it toward peace. Become aware of, and acknowledge, the motivations, values, and needs of those with whom you work. In doing so, you will facilitate mutual respect and peaceful coexistence.