October 6


Today's Quotation:

If everyone were clothed with integrity, if every heart were just, frank, and kindly, the other virtues would be well-nigh useless, since their chief purpose is to make us bear with patience the injustice of our fellows.


Today's Meditation:

Sometimes I try to imagine what the world would be like if no one was selfish, insecure, violent, angry, manipulative, aggressive, or anything else negative.  I wonder what it would be like if all were patient and kind and loving, with a strong sense of self-esteem and a feeling that they were loved.  If this were so, imagine all of the things that we wouldn't have to do, all of the things that we wouldn't have to spend our time on.

As Moliere says, we wouldn't even need virtues such as patience, forbearance, or forgiveness if everyone acted with integrity and kindness, for we wouldn't have to react to some of the awful, inconsiderate things that we have to react to now.  What would our world be like then?

I can't make other people act the way I want them to act, of course, but I can decide how I want to act.  I can decide to model those virtues that I find to be desirable.  I can act how I think is most appropriate and most helpful to the world in which I live.  How I act or react each day to each situation is up to me, and while I would like to see others act in loving ways, their actions aren't under my control, so I can't lose my peace of mind trying to make them into something they may not be.

What virtues are the most important to you?  You can try to live them out, if you really want to.  And if you do so, those around you won't have to practice the other virtues that come about because of other people's actions.  I hope that as few people as possible need to forgive me for my inconsideration or rudeness, and the only way I can ensure that is by not being inconsiderate or rude.  That's one of the easier ones, of course, but it still takes some effort sometimes.

Questions to ponder:

1.  What kinds of virtues do you want others to have to practice with you?

2.  What would life be like if everyone acted always with kindness and integrity?

3.  Why isn't the world that way?  Do most people who act without kindness and integrity really want to do so?

For further thought:

Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.

John Wooden

more thoughts and ideas on character



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