Honestly something that bothers me more than most things is having my compassion mistaken for naivety.
I know that another fish might eat this bullfrog right after I spend months rehabilitating it.
I know that turning a beetle back onto its legs won’t save it from falling over again when I walk away.
I know that there is no cosmic reward waiting for my soul based on how many worms I pick off a hot sidewalk to put into the mud, or how many times I’ve helped a a raccoon climb out of a too-deep trashcan.
I know things suffer, and things struggle, and things die uselessly all day long. I’m young and idealistic, but I’m not literally a child. I would never judge another person for walking by an injured bird, for ignoring a worm, or for not really caring about the fate of a frog in a pond full of, y’know, plenty of other frogs.
There is nothing wrong with that.
But I cannot cannot cannot look at something struggling and ignore it if I may have the power to help.
There is so much bad stuff in this world so far beyond my control, that I take comfort in the smallest, most thankless tasks. It’s a relief to say “I can help you in this moment,” even though they don’t understand.
I don’t need a devil’s advocate to tell me another fish probably ate that frog when I let it go, or that the raccoon probably ended up trapped in another dumpster the next night.
I know!!!! I know!!!!!!! But today I had the power to help! So I did! And it made me happy!
So just leave me alone alright thank u!!!!
I heard a story about this, a parable I guess.
There was a big storm and a ton of starfish were washed onto the beach, stranded much further up than they could get back and beginning to bake in the post-storm sunshine. A little girl was walking down the beach, picking up starfish and throwing them back into the sea. Some guy comes up and asks her what she’s doing. “Saving the starfish,” she says.
He looks around at the huge beach and the hundreds of starfish, and says “You can’t possibly save them all. I’m afraid you’re not gonna make much of a difference.”
She throws another starfish back into the ocean, and replies “It made a difference to that one.”
Yeah, I mean, we know we can’t change all the things. But have you ever noticed how much better life is when you’re around people who change things when they can?
Kindness is a choice. Even if it’s small, it’s worth it.
This is what I’m talking about, when I say that kindness and compassion do not equate with ignorance, stupidity, or naivety. Being cynical does not make someone more intelligent or more worldly.
Kindness is not weakness.
Kindness is brave. Especially when you also know that your kindness might not be returned, may even be met with anger or cruelty. It’s reaching out with an open hand, knowing that it’s just as likely to be bitten as it is to be held.
Kindness is hard. If you can’t find it in yourself to be kind, then fine. But don’t make it more difficult for those that can.
Kindness is a discipline, a skill like anything else. Don’t think you can simply be nice the odd time and call yourself kind. Kind takes work, ethic, perseverance. It must be pursued even in the darkest of times. Mercy is for those who deserve it the least and vows are for the times when it is most difficult to withstand.
If you aren’t pursuing it every day, then you’re not kind. You’re occasionally nice.
compassion is the most difficult and underrated super power out there.