I have always wondered the intricacies of being a good person. What does it entail? how do I become such? This has been the background of my reasonings, justifying actions based on where they fall on the good to bad ratio. More good than bad being the goal, neither good nor bad being the eventual outcome.
I had an original thought yesterday, well its a new day now, so that would be two days ago. I had an original thought two days ago and I would like to unpack it gradually to understand what it means.
For the greater good of all, we are employed to be good to one another, and ultimately be good to ourselves. But what does that mean? it simply means to not hinder or serve as a source fo hinderance for another or for ourselves. Simply put — don’t be the stone that makes another stumble.
It reads very easy to accomplish when you’re a five year old but as you grow and experience the bitterness of life which mostly stems from the wickedness of others, it becomes easier to forget about the notion to always be good and instead take on the notion to be good to those who are good to you and be just as mean to those who come for you.
We are quick to call a person good or bad. That’s a good man, this other one is a bad/wicked/evil fellow. We are also quick to label a situation as good or bad. But, I’m finding that’s a narrower view on things.
I do agree there is good in the world, and bad things happen. Today, I want to introduce you to two in-betweens. Let’s expand our view.
In this image, the actions of the young man can affect the snail in one of four ways.
Good — Service — Accident — Bad.
GSAB. Life is a continuous combination of GSABs but you have the strength to sort out the rubic cube, then keep guard to maintain its order.
Good: A person can be of value to another. This counts more as a willing action taken for the benefit of another and less of the benefit of the action taker with little or no compensation to the taker beyond altruistic rewards. This applies also to life events not seldom to a particular individual action. Good news for example, a job offer, a new baby, festive period, joy.
Service: A person can take on actions or tendencies at the bequest of another either for a reward to the undertaker or for mutually benefitting exercise. A nurse is carrying out a paid act of service but a volunteer is being good.
Accident: This is an unintended occurrence of a person or event which distraught another person. Someone accidentally spills coffee on your shirt. You turn a corner and bump another. You call the wrong phone number in the middle of the night, waking up a new mother. You get home and there’s no electricity of no fault of your own. Showers of rain during an outside wedding ceremony is just another oops situation. This section houses OPM — which is my utmost pet peeve. Accidents happen but you end up paying for another’s mistake.
Bad: This is a deliberate act to be a stumbling block for another. This is intentionally attempting to deprive another of a satisfaction you know they deserve. Bad things don’t just happen, they are made to happen especially to the ruin of another. When you stick your foot out to trip another, as a kid, yes, you’re being bad. When you take on actions to hurt another, yes, you’re being bad. Natural disasters could be interpreted as natures way of being bad. Violence being human’s nature of being bad. This could go deeper and darker but you get the point.
Where do we go from here? In the words of Asa “be good o, be good o, be good o, be good o, be good o, be good”. Be good, do good, feel good. If it’s nothing to you, improve the day of another. From a smile, to a conversation to carrying the grocery bag of your older neighbor or to simply standing up for the elder to sit down, next time you’re on a bus or train.
Life is good, life can be good but don’t put on a blind fold on the other ways life can go. Your biggest threat in life is people and to a lower degree, nature and life itself. Your biggest joy would come from people also and to a lower degree, nature and life itself.
Your key task then becomes finding people who are good at being human then associate with those people, emulate those people. And quickly identify those who suck at being human, run, run from those people because you’ll be stuck paying the bills of all the mistakes they’ve made before they met you and after they’ve left you. Do not be deceived there are some very cruel people out there with a smile on their face but in the same way there are a lot of people who are ready to bid you a good way with a welcoming smile on their face.
Seek out what you seek and hold on to it.