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Is it difficult to be a good person? If you look at generosity, compassion, empathy and how you show them in real life?

Denker 7 Aug 3

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19 comments

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Being a kind person within your tribe is generally not too difficult, and the vast majority of people are. It is one of the reasons humans form tribes, be they geographic areas, common ancestry, race or religion. Being nice to those outside your tribe requires more work and a more fluid view of your belonging in one tribe. Christians for instance will donate money and time for missions and food banks etc. But they don’t necessarily want those people they are supporting to move next door, or even into their town. White suppremists will help their fellow white people gladly, but not a person of color. A homophobe might be the nicest person you could meet if you are a heterosexual couple, but would treat you like dirt if you were a homosexual one. So being kind and nice is often dependent on many factors. There are those people who tend to be less tribal and more open and able to being kind to everyone. Sadly, I don’t think they are a majority, or there would be far less violence in the world.

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No I don't find it difficult. It doesn't have to be some big heroic act or anything--you see a stranger drop something & you pick it up for them. Smile & wave at toddlers. Pick up a piece of litter. Pick up a hitchhiker if you feel safe about it.

Carin Level 8 Aug 4, 2018
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I know it’s harder to be a good person. The challenges are higher but the dividends are greater.

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Less materialistic compassion. Every day there are ways to make the world a better place, even if its a spare macdonalds meal or a smile

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Am I the only one that does find it extremely difficult at times? I try my damnedest to be a good person, which to me means being kind and compassionate, but I also feel like I have been programmed with years of anger and selfishness that are constantly at odds with my core beliefs.

Sometimes it’s about the views that people hold, what is their threshold for goodness? It varies from person to person.

@Denker I read something once that basically said that it's not your first thought that determines if you're good or bad, it's the second thought. I think it was saying something like the first thought is just the automatic response based on how you've been socialized, but the second thought is your response to that thought. So if I have a negative, judgmental thought toward someone, that comes from a conditioned social response. But if my next thought is to correct myself, that shows that I have enough awareness to know that the original thought was unacceptable.

@Darla_Ann exactly what you said.

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Not at all. I treat others with dignity and respect. However, there are times when it is difficult. Like being in traffic with others making questionable decisions.

Traffic is the best place to practise compassion

@santocoyote I try, but I can only take so much. Especially when my safety is put into jeopardy.

@Captain747ex i agree. Angry drivers just make their insurance rates higher. Laugh at them, they hate that

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I’m kind to everybody until given a reason not to be. I believe the only way to get true respect is to conduct myself in a way that warrants being respected.

PaulD Level 5 Aug 3, 2018
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not for me.

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It's in you..you react to every situation because it's already in you to act in behave in that way .

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I just do. It's who I am.

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I strive to be a good person every day because many times I was helped though I didn't deserve ever and I can understand many troubles because of my complicated life up to present. Sometimes, I think I have too much empathy and too much mercy (when I see a lot of paine around me) that affects me..

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I don't think it's difficult at all, it may not be noticed or responded too but then it doesn't have to be, being good is an end unto itself.

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If you are genuinely interested in the well being of the people around you then they will react towards you the same way..... In the event they not, at least you get the satisfaction that you did your part.

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No. It is not difficult to be a good person. We all have done things we wish we had not done, but rare lapses do not characterize us.

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only when you are dealing with someone you perceive to be a dick

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I have no problem being nice to people because I actually care.
I spend a good part of the week volunteering at a homeless shelter.
I try to live by what Neil says in this meme.

Not a bad life philosophy!

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If you’ve lived through some poverty and misfortune and are not a sociopath, then no. Not really very hard. It’s hard to objectively give more than you take in life, hard to be generous when you can barely take care of yourself for example. But as far as harming no one and showing empathy, being helpful when you can, I can’t think of much that comes more naturally.

I agree. I had a rough childhood with an extreemly abusive father.
And rather than becoming like him. I made it a point to be every thing he was not.
In my time over the years I have learned a lot from good people how to care about others. And I took that to heart.
I have for a few years now volenteered at a homeless shelter, and nothing gives me more pleasure that seeing the joy in some one that I've helped. The best feeling in the world to me.

@TristanNuvo yeah I’ve got a shithead for a father too I know what that’s like. Thankfully mom made sure I knew he was a great example of how not to be and I was able to correct course using him as a Polaris of shitty parents lol.

@Wurlitzer As some one who has been there. I am really glad you made it out.
Be your own man is something I've had to learn along the way. But after a while I've grown to accept that in me.
I am very happy to hear that you broke away from all of that.Good for you.

@TristanNuvo back at you brother it takes an especially determined kind of person to fight upstream against accepting/becoming part of the sins of your father. I’m reminded of two things, not sure where this quote is from, sounds a bit like an AA saying maybe but “a real man is someone who can give love he never received.” And a poem by Phillip Larkin - This Be the Verse.

@Wurlitzer Honestly I've never heard that quote, but yet it is a good saying.
I'm sorry that you had a rough childhood, but it gives me a good feeling that I am not alone. Thank you brother for your great comments.

@Storybook yeah Gregg Proops introduced me to that, great stuff. ?

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I have no trouble being a good person. I try to live by the motto "don't be a dick."

I was marked at birth what my alliance will be.

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