Saturday, August 18, 2012
Love and The Golden Rule
Love and the Golden Rule I think that it’s not a big stretch to be considerate of one another. My belief is that we all should be as kind as possible to somebody in order for them to feel better, maybe even for them to like us. I want to be kind to somebody because, in part, I want them to be kind back. I try to set the tone of the encounter in order for the two of us to get along. I don’t like conflict. Most of us don’t, and we’re not very good at it anyway. Our basic, most fundamental urge is to withdraw from it. Very few, if any of us, lean in when a conflict ensues. It goes against our nature to fight. Conversely, it is well within our natural instincts to love one another and get along. I believe it is our nature to extend our feelings of goodness to each other, in every context imaginable. We say “good morning” to people as they pass by not because we truly care that they have a good morning, even though on some level we do; It’s just a natural, normal thing to do. We do it because it makes us feel good to offer somebody that kind of a pleasantry. It takes very little effort and it allows us to speak from our heart. I submit that our natural selves are compassionate human beings that extend courtesy and kindness to others because it’s nice, it’s reflexive, and it feels really good for us to do that. And one step away from these reasons is another form of motivation: It is something that, on some level, we wish would be done to us. I want people to be nice to me. I want them to like me and say “good morning” to me as I say the same to them. I would like somebody to hold the door, wave me into traffic, and smile at me for no good reason because I would do, and have done, the same to them. I am, in part, nice to people because I want them to be nice to me. And that is the foundation of the Golden Rule. “Do unto others as they would do unto you.” I will be kind to you because I want you to be kind to me. I will be friendly to you because I wish the same kind of treatment. This is so fundamental. It really is who we are and how we feel most able to treat one another. I wish this was on the wall of every school, every board room, and every courthouse in the country. I wish that we as a people would take this one principle and spread it all over, embodying this guideline in everything we do, in every encounter we have with each other. By following the Golden Rule, we would reclaim a sense of peace, decency and fairness. We are all in this thing together, folks. May we live together by thinking of how we should treat one another, regardless of any predisposed notion of who they are, what they do, or where they come from. Treat one another as you would like to be treated and watch the world change right in front of you. We need only be motivated by how we wish to be treated, and treat another the same way.