I can say without a doubt that I’ve seen good, innocent people suffer at the hands of people who, for the sake of this blog, I’ll call evil. I won’t even naively say that I don’t understand why good people are hurt by these evil people. I know exactly why the good are preyed upon. It’s basic: They are good. For that reason alone, they attract people who would betray their trust and go out of their way to make them feel like they don’t deserve happiness or love.
What disturbs me most when I hear stories from the past or when I think about the things that I’ve witnessed first hand is when the good people actually start to believe they are less than what they are. How is it that the evil can convince a good, thoughtful and kind human being that they are less than the dirt beneath our feet? Why does the darkness infect the good people, leaving them jaded, and then lost in that gray area between the two? It saddens me when I hear stories from the people I love, some of the stories good examples of the horrible things we inflict upon our own kind, and they believe that they somehow deserved to be treated like they were less than they are worth.
I guess what is key to remember for everyone who has faced someone who wanted to tear them down and hurt them is that we are not the sum of the evil done to us. Instead, how we should measure our worth is based upon the good things we do and the selfless kindness we show to others.
A few years ago, a good friend posted a quote from Gandhi on his blog. The quote was: “Be the change that you want to see in the world.” I thought it was a good reminder for all of us who have been hurt horribly to not take the actions of others and let it dictate who we are. Instead, it is a reminder that no matter what evil is done to us, that we are still defined by our actions and changing the world for the better means not letting the evil influence us away from the acts that do make us good, kind people.