Sunday’s Wisdom #206: Being Good

Good isn’t just the absence of bad, it’s also the presence of good.”
– The Devil, from “The Devil’s Dilemma,” by Studio C

How much more “Halloween” can you get than quoting the Devil, eh? 😉

And who besides Studio C could make a comedy skit where the Devil appears and actually says this?

It’s all in good, amusing fun, of course. The Devil shows up to claim a recently-departed soul, but it’s the soul of a man so unimpressive that he actually doesn’t want it. The man in question is confused. It’s not like he was that bad of a person. He paid his taxes (so did Hitler!), he didn’t kill anyone (people talk about the people Mother Teresa helped, not who she didn’t kill), and he got his dog from a shelter instead of a breeder (because he couldn’t afford the latter).

So, he didn’t do much bad, but that’s only half the equation. He didn’t do much good either.

And if, as Batman says, we are defined by what we do, then being good requires doing good.

“Being” is actually an action word.

To be a doctor, to be a hard worker, to be honest, to be a man (in more than a biological sense), all of these require doing something

Just like to be a liar, or to be a killer, or to be an adulterer, or to be a thief. You don’t become any of those without doing what they entail.

To be bad, you must do bad, and so to be good, you must do good.

To be good people, we must do more than simply not do bad things.

Someone who rushes to save someone from a burning building, or one who smuggles escaped slaves to freedom, or one who stands up against a prejudiced crowd and shields their victim with their own body, or one who drops candy from a plane to the waiting hands of children below, or one who gives poor people medical care or helps them dig a well, or one who works to heal psychological scars of abuse, or one who simply buys a meal and gives a job to homeless man, or one who just offers support and comfort in the wake of loss… all of these are real-world examples of people doing good.

And that is what being good truly is.

So… let’s do some good, eh? 😉

Oh, and Happy Halloween! 🙂

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5 Responses to Sunday’s Wisdom #206: Being Good

  1. raistlin0903 says:

    Happy Halloween to you as well! Thanks for another great, and quite frankly inspirational post. In this day and age it’s sometimes hard to see the good in people, but they are around, that’s for sure 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. ospreyshire says:

    I do want to do good, but what frustrates me is that I feel that whatever good actions I do aren’t good enough or how bad people don’t get called out on their actions. At the risk of sounding like I suffer from solipsism, it feels like I’m always judged my MY actions whether good or bad, but no one else faces that kind of scrutiny.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Merlin says:

      Eh, we all feel that sometimes, I think. At least, those of us who *try* to do good. Sometimes we just have to accept our limits, even if we want to push those same limits.

      Liked by 1 person

      • ospreyshire says:

        Gotcha. I certainly know that I try to do good. I’m someone who constantly harps on myself that I could do better at everything I attempt. There are certainly issues I care about and you know about some of them. I also speak truth with people even if it’s uncomfortable. What frustrates me is that I’m treated like the bad guy sometimes when I do that.

        Liked by 1 person

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