It’s really a wonder that I haven’t dropped all my ideals, because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out. Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can’t build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery, and death. I see the world gradually being turned into a wilderness, I hear the ever approaching thunder, which will destroy us too, I can feel the sufferings of millions and yet if I look up into the heavens, I think that it will all come right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again.Anne Frank
Anne Frank wrote that, in spite of everything, at a time when her world was being destroyed. She was 14.
I’ve been thinking a lot about goodness lately. It has become exceedingly difficult to focus on goodness, given the tsunami of bad news and toxic culture assaulting us daily.
Racial tensions, inequality in the face of a pandemic, loss of life and livelihood, sheer malice and hatred …. there’s nothing I can add to the list that you don’t already know and experience. Every. Single. Day.
Yet, throughout history, it’s been hope and belief in something greater than ourselves, that has carried humanity onward.
I’ve found that there is always some beauty left-in nature, sunshine, freedom, in yourself; these can all help you. Look at these things, then you find yourself again, and God, and then you regain your balance.Anne Frank
Every morning, I wake up early and come downstairs to sit for meditation. Lately, I’ve been sitting outside on the porch, listening to the birds announcing themselves to the world. They’re the perfect companions to my morning meditation.
It was during yesterday’s session that the idea of goodness began to take hold of my thoughts.
How can we rise above the darkness that has permeated our days and restore our faith in our innate goodness?
As I listened to the birds, I looked around at the pots filled with flowers and herbs slowly growing. There was a slight breeze and the scent of lilacs filled the air. Neal opened the door and the pup leaped my way and stretched, begging to be held. A fresh cup of coffee waited for me on the table. A new day had begun. I felt happy and content.
I’ve always found beauty and contentment in nature and the little things.
It’s during moments like this, when I feel at peace with myself and I rest in the beauty of nature, a meaningful conversation, a piece of music that touches me deeply, a poem, an act of kindness, my garden, the sound of flowing water, silence … that I become renewed.
And then, I can feel that goodness is indeed alive and if we can only hit pause before we strike back at what scares us or threatens us, maybe then, we can find a way to restore our world.
Seeing goodness does not mean that we ignore our challenges or deny the problems that are, after all, ours to solve. For me, it means that maybe we can get down to the business of problem solving with good will and caring.
What about you? What helps you feel renewed? Where do you find goodness in your daily life?
I invite you to share in the comments below. Let’s inspire and support one another. It’s how we affect change in our small corner of the world.