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Doing Nothing

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing” ~ Edmund Burke

While it is true that our actions shape our lives, we can be just as powerful when we don't take action.

Life evolves on a moment-to-moment basis. Every one of the myriad thoughts we think, the words we speak, and the actions we take, contributes to the complex quality and character of the unfolding of the Universe. We cannot be alive without making an impact on the world which surrounds us. Every single action taken can affect the whole as greatly as each action not taken. And when it comes to making the world a better place, what we choose not to do can be just as important as what we choose to do.

For example, when we neglect to recycle, speak up, vote, or help somebody in immediate need, we are denying ourselves the opportunity to be an agent for positive change. Instead, we are enabling a particular course to continue unchallenged, picking up speed even as it goes along. By holding the belief that our actions don’t make much of a difference, we may find that we often tend to forego opportunities for involvement. Alternatively, if we see ourselves as important participants in an ever-evolving world, we may feel more inspired to contribute our unique perspective and gifts to a situation.

It is wise to be somewhat selective about how and where we are using our energy, in order to keep from spreading ourselves too thinly; not every cause or action is appropriate for every person. However, when a situation catches our attention and really speaks to our heart, it is important that we honour our impulse to help and take the action that feels right for us. It might be offering a kind word to a friend, giving resources to people in need, or simply taking responsibility for our own behaviour. By doing what we can, when we can, we add positive energy to our world; and sometimes, it may be that our contribution makes all the difference.

“There are risks and costs to action. But they are far less than the long range risks of comfortable inaction” ~ John F. Kennedy


Doing Nothing

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