Tuesday, December 27, 2011


We are all, by nature, clearly oriented toward the basic human values of love and compassion. We all prefer the love of others to their hatred. We all prefer others’ generosity to meanness. And who is there among us who does not prefer tolerance, respect and forgiveness of our failings to bigotry, disrespect, and resentment?

HH Dalai Lama

I just finished watching the movie The Help. I hear it has mixed reviews. Ordinary people love it. Film afficianados have varying degrees of like/dislike for it. Whatever.

The movie moved me. As far as I am concerned, that is what story telling is about.

Set during the Civil Rights movement era, the movie is about black maids in Jackson, Mississippi. The movie shows reveals the relationships and how they take a backseat to the customs and expectations of the culture in the south.

Clearly, the customs were not based on the teachings of the Dalai Lama.

I do not...cannot understand how people can be so unkind to others. I do not and cannot understand how differences in race, religion, or politics make some people think they have the right to be unkind--no...downright mean to others. I. Do. Not. Get. It.

Ignorance can be corrected. Mean-spiritedness? Maybe not.

Perhaps I have had too many lifetimes as the underdog. Perhaps I have had enough experiences in this lifetime of being misunderstood, misinterpreted, and denigrated to be willing to put up with bad behavior on the part of those who think they are better.

I know I have my own blind spots and ignorance. I am willing to learn. I am willing to change.

I am not willing to be mean just because someone is different. Are you?


Kathryn Grace said...

No. But then, growing up, I was the different one, so I'm sensitized and have always been a bit of a scrapper where injustice is concerned.

I haven't seen the movie, but I read the book last year. It remains for me a deeply moving story, bits and pieces of which I've heard and read, told by people who lived it, for decades, and one I shall not forget. May it be told again and again, lest we all forget.

Joan said...

There is absolutely no excuse under the sun for anyone anywhere to be mean...absolutely none.

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