“Aim above morality. Be not simply good, be good for something.” – Henry David Thoreau
Most men strive to be good, but how many could truly say they are good for something? My greatest joy in life is helping others to discover what they are good for.
It takes something.
People generally don’t feel safe being themselves. They aren’t comfortable in their own skins. They live reactively, basing their sense of self on how they think the world around them is receiving them and they all but ignore their ever-present magnificent inner reality. What’s worse is they often hold to the impossible notion that the world around them must be perfect before they can be not just good, but good for something.
I had a heartening conversation with a young woman recently who sincerely wants to be good for something. I’m confident that she can and in more ways than one, she already is. Her heart is in the right place, she has a keen mind and despite her youth, she recognizes that discovering what she is good for comes primarily from helping others to discover what they are good for, not just good at.
With this concern to serve, age doesn’t matter, position is unimportant, rank is irrelevant, let alone race, color, creed or sexual persuasion. Your value is independent of outer station. It is eternal and absolute. That said, you have to find ways to let it find expression through the lattice of uncertainty, insecurity and inexperience.
There is nothing more liberating than realizing that being good for something is not just a possibility, but at hand. Dare to come to terms with it yourself!