We rarely engage with gratitude, failing to see how much worse things could get. Henry Ward Beecher, G.K. Chesterton and Charles Dickens. Art by M. Raimondi
Like handing someone a glass of water while they are engulfed in flames, it does very little. The danger is that we are only really fulfilling our own need or want to be ‘compassionate’ people, in this vain sense.
We don’t want to venture down there and face the damage we have caused. The alternative however, is more devastation every time the truth comes knocking; and it will keep coming. So, we muster every ounce of courage we have left, open the hatch door, and delve underground.
Even though we may think the ‘reality’ we have built is solid, when it holds no truth, it is under constant danger of collapsing. One cracked brick is no big deal, but if every brick we use is cracked, we end up with a completely unstable structure.
When we compare ourselves to others, we highlight our differences and in doing so, highlight our own inferiorities. We start believing that we are unhappy because of these things we lack in comparison, and envy creeps in.
The act of being good implies adhering to a high standard of moral conduct. At first it may bring to mind someone who is selfless, gentle, caring and incessantly agreeable. True goodness, however, demands of us a number of more complex and at times, thorny obligations.