August 2023

August Thought of the Month

"Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love."

~ Lao Tzu

Being kind is more powerful than we think. Every society in history that collapsed had several factors in common, including the decay of societal cohesion. Societal cohesion is defined as the characteristics that allow a group to function as a unit. For generations children have learned these traits first from their parents, then in school, before they enter their societies as contributing individuals. We even see lessons and examples in our entertainment (think Thumper's mom).

Those lessons include be kind to each other. The way we interact with people has ripple effects. Treat someone badly and you sour their mood and any interactions they have with people after meeting you. But treat someone kindly and they will not only be grateful but more likely to do a kindness to someone they meet in the future.

Based on the kinds of videos and reporting we get from social media and news outlets, kindness is a dying art. Don't believe it. If it were true, this world would be in a much bigger mess than it is now. The kind people are the unsung heroes of society. Each act of kindness plants the seeds of a future act of kindness. Imagine if every tenth person in the world deliberately did a good deed for someone once a day, and each person they helped paid it forward to another person. In no time at all, the good news would outweigh the bad, which would become a rare lead instead of the norm it has been in recent years.

If we only look at the huge problems that face us, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. But by taking every opportunity to do good that presents itself to us, we can add a little light to the darkness that permeates our societies.

So the next time you're out and about, hold a door for someone, put loose change in a charity collection jar, or simply smile at someone. It will lighten your heart and brighten their day.

[Thought and image design by Elaine C. Oldham]

082023 thought image
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