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Goodness

by

James Adrian

      I love humanity. Love of all people seems too rare. I feel that goodness has not been universally appreciated for what it is. We have been beseeched many times to care about each other. Policies and behavior are perfected by caring about the wellbeing and happiness of every living person. Extending this to love is a measure too far for many.

      I fault the common understanding of Human Nature. Resentment, fear, envy, jealousy, anger, revenge, blame, hate, hostility, dismissiveness, arrogance, and wishing for power over the choices of others are widely counted as natural to all people. Children play competitive games with toys imitating machined guns. They play King on the Mountain and Simon Says, cultivating the joy of power. Writers of cartoons condition children to cheer when a cartoon character is evaporated by a bomb. Armies have yet to engage any conflict with non-lethal weapons. Competition is sold as inherently more fun than constructive cooperation.

      This could be otherwise; although I have not changed one mind. As some agree, infants can learn a different path, but they imitate their parents. Add to that the wishes of those who have been rewarded for manipulating the culture toward evil ends and it seems that it will be centuries before people regard each other as cherished siblings.

      Those who do wrong are not to be hated, lest we become haters who produce nothing good. We might wonder how those who do wrong come to be so misled. How indeed. To understand how, is to understand their misfortune. There but for the grace of God, go I.

      Each of the feelings and reactions listed above as supposedly natural to people are abominations that can be purged by the individual. They are not part of goodness. They hold us back. They do us harm. They form the substance of barbarism. Become free.