No Good People. No Bad People

I sometimes catch myself and others classifying people as good or bad. The truth, though, is that there are no good people or bad people. There are just people and we’re all good. Even the people we hate or think are bad.

For example, imagine a person whom you really don’t like or who has hurt you. Now imagine that same person when he or she was born — as a little baby boy or girl. What do you see? Do you see her as an evil baby? No, I’m guessing. We aren’t born with hate or anger. We are born joyful, happy, curious, and full of love. Unfortunately, along the way, as we get older, society, family, friends or certain situations change us. The situations we face poison our minds and cause us to lose some of those attributes and become less kind, generous, loving and open minded.

I bring this up because when I look at our society today, I see how incredibly divided we are and it deeply saddens me. We have forgotten how to be compassionate. We have chosen being right over understanding where another person comes from or the life circumstances that have caused them to have certain views. Unfortunately economic pressures and misguided social demands (ie. our ego or insecurities) have created this environment.

That all said, in trying to live more mindfully, the next time we get upset with someone, or deem someone as bad, if we could pause and imagine that individual as a small child — how loving they once were — and the circumstances that must have changed them to how they are today, perhaps we can slowly stop the vicious cycle of anger towards others and the conflict around us. Instead of angry tweets, fists or bombs, perhaps we can instead extend a hand to help or an ear to listen.