January 30


Today's quotation:

And when we come to think of it, goodness is uneventful.  It does not flash, it glows.  It is deep, quiet, and very simple.  It passes not with oratory, it is commonly foreign to riches, nor does it often sit in the places of the mighty:  but may be felt in the touch of a friendly hand or the look of a kindly eye.

David Grayson

Today's Meditation:

For goodness' sake!  What is goodness?  Is it something that we have inside of us from the day that we're born, or something that we have to develop ourselves?  Can we always recognize it when we see it?  Can we copy it when we see it in someone else?

Goodness has so much to do with intentions.  I know someone who constantly tries to prove what a "good" person he is.  Unfortunately, everyone realizes that his "good" actions happen in order to try to show off to others and earn their respect and praise.  His "goodness," therefore, is little more than selfishness, which is quite sad, when all is said and done.  For example, he showers his kids with attention and gifts (he's divorced and doesn't have custody), yet it's quite obvious that all that he does is for his own benefit, to make himself feel better about all of the years that he neglected them.  The kids themselves feel very uncomfortable about the way he treats them, and one of them doesn't even go to see him any more.

Goodness has to come from the heart--that's one thing I know for sure.  I also know for sure that not everything that comes from my heart is goodness, and that's something I'm working on.  Goodness has to be pure in intention, and I know that my good acts aren't always intended solely for the good of the recipients.  I'm working on that, too.  When I truly do good, there's a very good chance that no one ever will notice it, and I'll never be recognized as someone who has done something good.  When I can live with that and be at peace with it, I know that I'll have reached a very high level of living.

Questions to consider:

Think about the kind of "good" people that you admire most.  What would you have to do to be more like them?.

Why are so many of our good actions marred with less-than-positive intentions?

Why does society so often mock and look down upon "do-gooders"?  What is it about someone doing good that other people find so threatening?

For further thought:

We ought to do good to others as simply and as naturally as a horse runs, or a bee makes honey, or a vine bears grapes season after season without thinking of the grapes it has borne.

Marcus Aurelius

more thoughts and ideas on goodness



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