Every once in a while, I come across a person who is just too far gone in their life view.
By that, I mean they don’t care anymore. Years ago, I saw a family and the mother was screaming and the daughter was crying, while everyone else just kind of sat there, not knowing what to say. The mom kept bellowing until I stopped her. When I stopped her by saying, “Didn’t you see your daughter was hurting?”, the mother said, “How would I know that?”. I replied, “Um… because she’s crying?”. The mom was silent.
It amazes me sometimes how simple this stuff is. It also amazes me how lost and off the mark people can get to be. Honestly, a lot of ethics are easy. Let’s try these things and see how much better the world is. Then, what’s left we can get to work on, but simple stuff first.
1) If a person is crying, and it’s because of something you are doing, stop doing that thing. Think “Does this really help?” .
2) If a person says, “You’re hurting me”, stop what you’re doing.
3) If you wouldn’t want it done to you, don’t do it to someone else, no matter how much you think it makes sense. (You may have heard this one before…)
4) If it’s not yours, leave it alone.
5) Don’t talk about something you can’t possibly know about — most notably someone else’s experience. Instead, listen to their experience. Ask questions, check out your conjecture with the other person.
6) Don’t make a “means” an end in itself. Money is a tool, not a goal. Once you have enough, you have enough.
7) Don’t lie to people. It confuses everything.
8) Don’t take advantage of someone, even if you can.
9) When appropriate, take “no” for an answer.
10) When an idea keeps chasing you, chase it.
11) When you die, whatever you die of, can be a cause to fight against for those left behind.
If ICE agents lived by this, there’d be fewer deportations… “Hands up, don’t shoot” wouldn’t be a thing…. People could afford to live and get things they need. People wouldn’t make unjust laws that hurt others. People could trust each other. Domestic violence would stop. Rape would not happen. We wouldn’t have as many wars. The “isms” would decrease. People could make meaning and find purpose in their lives. Things could get better as we found cures for things.
If you can’t do things on this list, back off. Figure out what’s going on — away from people. When you’ve figured out why you can’t stop hurting others, change. Rest. Eat. See a therapist. Talk to a priest. When you can be with people, apologize to people you’ve hurt, continue to do things differently, then go on with your life in community, if they’ll have you.
If we did this, most of the time, life would be manageable. When it takes more than this, we’d have more energy to cope because we wouldn’t be so perplexed, so overwhelmed, so angry all the time.
Oh, and sharing is a good idea when you can.
Just some random thoughts to consider.
Resisting with peace,