My thesis: Love is positive, stronger and always conquers hatred. On the other hand, if you meet hatred with hatred, you simply intensify it.
How earth-shattering and profound can that be? "Not very," you say? But how often we forget! I know that I have had lapses of memory when it came to that age-old truth.
One of the sages that I seem to be in the habit of quoting in recent posts, has said: "Always meet petulance with gentleness and perverseness with kindness. A gentle hand can lead even an elephant by a hair. Reply to thine enemy with gentleness. Opposition to peace is sin."
How often have we heard the expression, "Never mind, I'll get even with him." But the question remains, will you? And how would you do it? Well, you could do it in one of two ways.
1) You could deal with him as he deals, or apparently deals, with you. Pay him, as we say, in his own coin. In so doing, however, you would get even with the individual by sinking to their level with the result that more often than not the two of you would end up suffering.
Or, 2) you could show yourself to be the larger by demonstrating love in place of hatred, kindness instead of ill-treatment, and in so doing "get even" by raising the other party to the higher level. The upside to this choice of action, of course, is the fact that you can never help another person without actually helping yourself at the same time. Here the old adage: "You reap what you sow!" certainly holds true.
Then there is an often forgotten bonus. The person that we forgive, or help, may just turn around and return the compliment for someone else, thereby contributing to a care-encumbered society. Funny how it works, isn't it?
Suffice to say, we need more gentleness, sympathy and compassion in our common human life today. Just a little something to think about this weekend as we welcome some early signs of spring and all the potential for renewal that comes with it.