Our society often labels people as “good” or “bad”. But nothing is so black or white. We all have our good and bad sides. No one is perfect. Everyone is flawed. We all make mistakes. We all have our inner demons that creep out sometimes. Society often has a negativity bias, focusing on all the bad and forgetting about the good. We evolved this way to avoid danger.
Sometimes when someone does something bad, others may deem them as a “bad” person, never forgiving them, “hating” them. But think about it. There were times when we did bad things too. Sometimes we feel so guilty, hating ourselves & never forgiving ourselves either. We start to think we’re a bad person. Oftentimes, when people do “bad” things, they didn’t have bad intentions. It’s just that the action was perceived as “bad” by others. Maybe the action led to negative consequences. I believe that people rarely have bad intentions. It’s just perhaps the results did not match the intentions, or maybe others perceived things a different way.
When we label someone as “bad”, and when we withhold love and kindness from them, they too may start to believe that they truly are “bad” and cannot change. Especially when people are cruel to them, they lack the love that all humans need. So they decide that maybe they are just bad.
I believe that people only hurt others because they were once hurt themselves, and their wounds never healed. Hurt spreads just like kindness. It’s a cycle. So when someone has done something bad, we mustn’t label them as a bad person and withdraw love from them. We must help them understand what they have done but still forgive them, showing love and kindness to them, so that kindness will spread instead of hurt.
This includes ourselves. We must learn to forgive ourselves and love ourselves despite all the bad things we may have done in the past. We can’t let our past demons keep eating at us all the time. We need to set them free. We are not what we did. Despite the bad, we still have goodness in us.
There are many stories and examples of this.
One is the story of Frankenstein. When Frankenstein was born, people ostracized him, was mean to him, and thought he was a bad monster just because he looked scary. They were prejudiced. Even his own father/creator shunned him and called him a monster. He kept looking for love but no one showed him any love or kindness, only hatred and meanness. He lived in isolation and really became a monster, destroying people and things. When he was born, he had goodness in his heart, but he was hurt, ostracized, and labeled as “bad”, so that’s what he believed he was.
There are also many situations where kids who were bullied and ostracized at school ended up shooting up their school. Many serial killers and rapists were neglected, abused, and ostracized as children. This shows that people who hurt others were often hurt themselves, and perhaps didn’t receive love or kindness. Therefore, it is important to be kind and loving to everyone, and to forgive people.