There is obviously much to critique in the world. But rather than complaining what we hate in the world (the ‘commentator’ mentality, which actually doesn’t take much personal courage), perhaps we should strive to actually BECOME the change which we wish to see in the world!
Perhaps we should be the starting-point. This means if there are things we critique in the behavior of others (ethics), perhaps we should try to change ourselves. This also means for us not to engage in any activities which we criticize in others.
For example, I hate when people discourage me. Thus, I never discourage others (I only encourage others).
Or I hate it when websites have pop-ups to tell me to signup for their newsletter. Thus, I have never instituted a popup on my blog, and I will never.
If I don’t like it when others gossip about others, perhaps I shouldn’t gossip about others. Or if I don’t like it when others criticize others, perhaps I shouldn’t criticize others, and simply mind my own business.
Words are cheap. Action is expensive.
Children learn via their parents’ actions. For example, I learned the true value of love and sacrifice via my mom– seeing her actions. Sacrificing everything for me and my sister.
For example if you’re a parent and you don’t want your kids to smoke, you probably shouldn’t be a smoker. Or if you curse and you don’t want your children to curse, perhaps you shouldn’t curse (at all). But if you’re like me (I don’t mind cursing), curse around your kids– it is fine.
I really like this notion of ‘virtue signaling’, which I learned from Nassim Taleb. The notion of ‘virtue signaling’ is this:
When you act or say something very publicly, in order to show off to others how ‘virtuous’ you are.
This is why I’m always hyper-suspicious when I hear “self-righteous” people talking about being anti-consumerism, saving the environment, and a billion other topics. I’m always curious:
Are they acting this way or talking about these topics, because they want to be deemed as “virtuous” and “worthy of love/admiration” from others, or because they truly believe it?
Jesus said something like if you give alms, don’t let your other hand know. Or if you’re going to pray, don’t do it out-loud in the synagogues in order to virtue-signal.
And how do you know whether your own actions are genuine? That is for you to determine.
Philosophy by KIM
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