Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Perfection is the Enemy of Goodness

I find myself often evaluating my behaviors and those of my species' looking for someway to ratchet up the ethical processes of the individual and world. The momentum of current culture is ferocious. Holding on to ancient traditions and ideas is very difficult to erode even when their foundations are inane and their outcomes heinous.

Still, knowing there is no such thing as perfection is important to staying sane in ones daily life. And to be sure being a positive activist can be exceptionally draining. Whether it's as a vegan unintentionally smashing insects with my car, or as an atheist observing winter holidays alongside Christian family members. Giving in a little permits one to live life in an imperfect world and among those we have differences with.

A sense of humor and a joyful heart go a long way to helping to navigate in the real world, especially if one has an activist mindset. Many cite "live and let live" as a guiding principle; however, what goodness do we rob from life if we are unable to peacefully share ideas and persuasively influence others with compassionate and well-reasoned intentions?

And yet the "live and let live" philosophy reigns supreme in American pseudo-libertarian culture, even when the ones living kills animals unnecessarily, pollutes the atmosphere excessively and thieves from resources as if they were unlimited.

It can be enough to wear us down. At some point in ones life we may very well decide to hole up and hide from the world. Even "do no harm" pledges are not realistically attainable, so a compassionate person who falls short in living up to their own ideals can develop self-apathy.

Instead of seeking perfection, we should set aside time to recharge. Dance, laugh, read for pleasure, watch a comedy, play a video game, explore a nature trail, create something beautiful....regularly swim in the chaotic experience of imperfection!

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