“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.” – Leo Tolstoy
Unfortunately, this quote can only be so true. Self-righteousness is the disease of the century I would say, i.e. those who claim to know it all and know something to be absolutely true in how “others” are wrong and they are right to preach.
Advising others is good and actually encouraged in society but only when one has looked at oneself through various frames of reference first understanding one’s own values and bias. Without this, our advice may be misplaced or may even negatively affect those being preached to.
What comes with self-righteousness is criticism and I often wonder if we criticise because we truly care or if there is something else underneath? I have personally seen the effect of self-righteousness and focusing on the negative aspects of people’s actions and I later ask myself, who am I to judge their actions as wrong? And why not focus on what is right in their actions, emphasize them and encourage them to do more of the good for example as opposed to criticise and focus on the bad?
It is a matter of choice, does criticism or emphasis on the good make a bigger impact on society? Which one enhances positivity? Which one makes the good even more good and automatically reduces the bad? I may not consistently do this myself, but I can tell you that the times I focused on the positive, it brought more improvement and general good feelings to those around me than the opposite approach.
Something worth pondering.
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