How To Be Good Quickly

What does it mean to be a good person? Do you have to be completely selfless? No way, that can be bad actually. Do you have to be completely selfish? An Objectivist would tell you so, but in my opinion, that’s even worse. I think it’s really hard to be good sometimes. I mean really hard. I consider myself a good person most of the time. Or is it that I should consider myself to be a bad person only very rarely and not really a good person most the time, just a person. Do humans automatically default to “good”? I believe they do. I think. Most of the time anyway. But I also believe you must show some sort of undoubtably positive action in order to be considered Good. It takes an effort. Nothing comes easily, especially being good.

“Knowing in fact who we are results in Good Being, and Good Being results in the most appropriate kind of good doing. But good doing does not of itself result in Good Being. We can be virtuous without knowing who in fact we are. The being who are merely good are not Good Beings; they are just pillars of society. Most pillars are their own Samsons. They hold up, but sooner or later they pull down.”

-Aldous Huxley in Island

4 thoughts on “How To Be Good Quickly”

  1. There’s a difference between being a “good” person and being a “consciously good” person, is there not? People may do things that are “good” or “bad,” but without a conscious effort to do good or bad, how is it that they can be classified as one or the other? My dog pisses on the boundaries of the lawn to deter other animals – perhaps ravenous ones – which is good. Does that make him good; or bad when he pisses on the carpet? Is that good act selfless? Is the bad act selfish?
    Sunday’s do suck no matter what plans you have.

  2. Heh, cool. Hi Liz’s Sister. Well if you ask me, there is a difference between the consciously good or bad person, and the just plain old ignorant or unaware person.

    Now your dog is an animal and it is debatable whether he has consciousness or not (scientists currently say dog’s do not have a sense-of-self or awareness-of-self) and they act “obediently” or “naughty” based only on instinct and Pavlovian response to what you’ve taught him. Your dogs pee in the back yard is simply convenient, and his pee on your carpet is only disobedient.

    However a person has a sense-of-self. If she is ignorant or unaware and does something good she is lucky but not really “good”, and if a person is ignorant or unaware and does something bad he is unfortunate but not really “bad”. It is when people who are fully aware of how there actions might effect them and others when the area between “good” and “bad” gets really murky.

  3. I think that there is no such thing as a good person 100% of the time. If that were the case we wouldn’t be human. I think it’s something to strive for but don’t beat yourself up because no one is perfect.

  4. In my life god protected me and my heart and soul has guided me. I hope that within my spiritual understandings I find that I am in fact a good person. It seems that no matter whom I ask or what I do the main question I am asking is not what makes me who I am but am I a good or bad person. It seems this would be such a simple question but good and bad are merely the headings to endless lists of characteristics that define them. So though the question I tend to be really asking myself is small it in reality is the biggest question of all. Am I a good or bad person?

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