Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Be kind to everyone you meet

This advice is similar to what many religions teach their members, and even if you're not a member of any organized religion, this advice fits well into the ethical principles that many atheists practice.

I am mentioning it on this blog, now, because of a very unusual event that I experienced.

I recently met someone who won a million dollars in a lottery.

There are many reasons for a person to experience a sudden increase in their income, and just as many reasons for them to experience a sudden decrease in their income.  Both of these events can be called income mobility, which I have written about in another essay.  On a later date, I also wrote about a related topic, the redistribution of wealth.

Whether sudden increases or decreases in wealth happen to you or not, they do happen to many of the people around you.  It is part of an overall plan that was implemented (I believe) by God a very long time ago.  Whether you share my belief or not isn't important right now.  What is important is that you treat everyone you meet with kindness and respect.

Whether you do this because of your personal ethical principles, because of the principles of your religion, or because you selfishly want to increase your own income, regardless of how it happens, you should be kind to everyone.

You never know when someone you were kind to in the past now has the ability to thank you for your past kindness.

For all those who are cruel to others, whether they know it or not, you never know when someone you were unkind to in the past now has the ability to walk our of your life and never see you again.  Think about treating people differently tomorrow morning.  Ask God for help in this task.  You may need his help, but if you ask nicely, you're likely to get his help, and that can make a very big difference in your life.

If you humbly ask for God's help, no matter what kind of a lifestyle you have now, you may even find yourself wondering why you're now experiencing an increased income and more personal happiness.  You can stop wondering about that, because God loves you.  Take some time to thank him for what he's done for you.

... and be kind to everyone you meet.  Some of them will need as much kindness as they can get, and someday, some of them will find a way to thank you tomorrow for being kind to them today.

Remember, I recently met a lottery winner.