Don’t try to be a good person.

” Why do you want to be better? The reasons why you want to be better are the reasons why you ain’t” – Allan Watts.

I really love that quote from Allan Watts. What Allan is pointing to is that we suffer and get frustrated with ourselves because we constantly feel we need to become something we are not right now in this moment, we feel we are somehow not good enough. Ironically it’s our ego that tries to fix our ego.

I titled this post ” Don’t try to be a good person” not because I’m saying to be a bad person or be a jerk, what I’m saying is trying to be anything you are not in this moment is not being genuine, it’s being a fake. Grumpy people, one thing I do admire about them is you know that they aren’t faking grumpiness, you know they are being real. The problem with people that are being nice though is you can never tell if behind that smile if they really mean it, people fake nice all the time.

All of nature if you look at it is being genuine. Nature just does what it does, why do we love animals and small children? Because again they are just being themselves, no faking. When a child starts growing and develops a sense of self, when it starts slowly learning how and what to do and say to please others we say they have ” lost their innocence” that’s when their ego is fully formed and they start putting on acts and displays for a certain outcome like the rest of us.

In Zen they want us to reach a stage of genuineness and spontaneity, we can only achieve that state when we finally accept ourselves in our entirety. Somedays we will feel negative, some days positive, some days feel like a saint other days a sinner. Trying to be a ” good” person is someone that does good deeds, speaks good words, shows that side of themselves to the world but on the other hand when negative or bad feelings arise, tries to suppress, get rid of or feel guilty about it.

What I’m really getting at is of course live a life of being loving, compassionate and committing good deeds but we should only do it if it comes from our heart. Doing things we think are the right thing to do but then feeling resentment or that it’s an obligation isn’t healthy or being genuine. To be honest some of us are destined to be jerks and must deal with the karma that it brings, others are destined to be saints and deal with the karma that it brings.

The take home message is never feel you aren’t ” doing life right” you are always doing it right, all we must do is accept the present moment whatever shape it takes and be ok with how it is. True spirituality isn’t about projecting a perfect image of ourselves to the world, it isn’t about transcending our humanity, it’s about stripping away all that nonsense and just being real, being raw, being genuine, it’s about embracing our humanity because all is divine including our flawed human traits, being genuine that’s what people respond to, that’s what people love, and we will love ourselves so much more, have a bit more inner peace in our lives as well if we can learn to live in this way.

That’s just my take on it anyway, thanks for reading, any questions or comments feel free to post, have a lovely day.

Simon Coleman.

6 thoughts on “Don’t try to be a good person.

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