Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Do unto others...

I have been thinking quite a bit lately about the way people treat each other, and the way I want to treat other people. Most of me, or the spiritual part of me, believes in a generous approach to people. I believe in idea that there is some measure of good in everyone, and as Randy Pausch said, if you are patient, you will find it. I believe in maintaining an openly, expectant happiness to discover the humanness of each person I meet, like the Dalai Lama. Even aspire to love my neighbor, as Jesus taught.
I know that the world is so full of kindness, altruism, sacrifice for others, heroics. There is such power in what we can do for others and the world!
On the other hand...oh, there are so many other hands. People can be real jerks, and worse. In my line of work, I see people selfishly hurting others regularly, people hurting children, too. I see smirks of pleasure and gloating at another's pain, meanness, dishonesty. I just want to "call 'em like I see 'em" and dismiss that human being, that life. No patience; no understanding; no acceptance. I want to assign consequence for the darkness that humans can spread on to others.
Just on Monday, I dealt with one person taking a child from the other parent through the use of mistatements to authorities - and watch the vicious giggles at the anguish he caused. The same day I dealth with a sexual assault on an eight year old daughter. More the same day a person maliciously withholding money owed to another, while they fall more and more ill with stress and poverty. All that pain purposefully, even gleefully inflicted from "human" to human. My resolve to look for the good crumbles.
I should know that life, lives, being human after all, is just not that black and white. Yet, I still struggle at reconciling the two perspectives. I don't know why. What are your thoughts?
And why the picture above? It doesn't really have anything to do with this topic, except way down inside me. The meaning of life in some way always comes down to one's children and grandchildren. Here is my granddaughter, joyously and unselfconsciously skipping through the maze of her life towards her future.


  1. What a beautiful photo. As for the good in people, I guess we just have to look one person at a time.

  2. I am with you on trying to see the good in others and be hopeful that good overcomes that bad in others more often than not..... I have a former brother-in-law who has done some of the things you referenced and I have to work hard to turn the other cheek....I have managed to do so, everytime he does one more nasty thing to my sister....I pray for him....hoping that my prayer will bounce back and help me, continue to turn the other cheek. I would LOVE to dismiss him, but, he touches others I love, therefore, I let that guide me.
    YOur photo is lovely.

  3. Hi Jennifer

    In much of life we can choose to associate with the not so nice types or not but when it comes to work, especially in how you work, it must be very difficult.

    I don't think you can ever reconcile the two perspectives because there are always opposites.

    You can only do your work then hand it over and wash your hands of them praying that they may see the light one day... I suggest you actually go and wash your hands literally, after you deal with these people as a symbolic act of cleansing and letting go...

    I wish you well with this part of your work...

    Happy days

  4. great photo...
    I can see that your work does involve some real a..holes, and I bet it gets really frustrating at time...all I can say is human kind will always have it's skum and yes it's very unfair, especially to innocent children... I (like my husband was..) have always been kind to people and tried to see the good in everyone, and always believed what my dad said... "don't worry about the mean ones they'll get what's coming to them," and I somehow was always ok with that idea.... till recently when my husband who truly was an angle all his life... had to suffer and leave this world at such a young age.. so I'm just as lost and bewildered as you are at this moment... as to why such horrid people get to walk the earth, and yet angels such as my husband get a punishment like this...
    sorry didn't mean to ramble, sometimes my thoughts get out of control.
    Last thought... we can just be who we are... our kind and gentle selves... if we can combat some of the bad ones with our kindness then great...if not they it really is out of our hands... isn't it.
    have a good one and hug that little grandchild of yours :)

  5. I'm shocked each time I meet people who are selfish and mean-spirited. But the world is made up of all kinds of folks.


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