The World as I See it Today (16th May 2015)
I’m a good man. That is, I do everything I can to try to be. Although I don’t always know what that means. What does it mean to be “good”? Is it to be polite to the person serving you at the supermarket? To give up your bus seat to the pregnant lady or the frail old man? Or is it more than that? Is it to prioritise other peoples needs before your own? To act selflessly? Is that ever really possible when you spend every waking moment viewing life through your own eyes. The same eyes that cease to function the moment your own needs are no longer being met.
And I like to consider myself a rational person. But rationality can be hard to find when you most need it. When you’re nervous, or anxious, or scared. When the intensity of the moment takes over and the rational choice becomes buried beneath a haze of emotions. Sometimes I hear the words that tumble from my mouth but don’t recognise them as my own. Often, the moment when you know most clearly what needs to be said is the same moment it becomes hardest to say.
And I know my faults. I have inspiration but lack conviction. I always think I know best, although I rarely do. I can be hardest on the people I owe the most. I take my good fortune for granted and can be cynical and condescending to those who don’t see the world as I see it. But to know my faults is not enough, and to truly change seems painfully hard.
I don’t know as much about this world as I’d like to think I do. And I don’t have many lessons to teach. But something I have learnt, something that I wish I could remind myself of more often, is that the people you surround yourself with are what makes you. No man is an island, this we know. We need each other, because alone we are nothing. Empty vessels with no purpose. And life will always be at it’s best when it’s shared with the people that know you the best. The people that know you at your highest moments just as they know you at your lowest. The people who love you when you’re strong just as they love you when you’re weak.
To surround yourself with good people won’t make everything right, but it will make the good bits better the bad bit easier to bear. It’s the closest thing to giving life any true value or tangible meaning that I know of. And that’s no small thing.