Some would say that there are three ways of interacting with other people, interacting with the world.
You can interact with others from a place of giving. You can try to help others whenever possible. Your life can be about giving.
On the other hand, you can be an *sshole. Your idea of living life is to try and make things as unpleasant for other people as possible.
Finally, as some would say, there is a third option. You can do nothing.
You can neither actively work to help others, or actively work to harm them.
But I don’t think there are three options. I think there are just two.
Number three is an illusion. If you do nothing, really you are doing a milder version of option #2. That is, you are working towards the harm of others.
It’s not possible to do “nothing” in life. Even when you are so called “doing nothing”, you are probably thinking and breathing. We are always sending energy out into the world. We are always doing something.
If you are neither trying to help others nor harm others, you are trying to harm others. Because indifference really means a subtle rejection of the thing you’re indifferent about.
Think of a person who is dying of hunger. You have more food than you need, but you say “Not my problem” and let them die. This example is exaggerated, and it’s meant to be because that way you can see the point I’m making. But it’s not a long shot from what many – most – people do every day.
“It’s not my problem that there are injustices in the world”
“It’s not my problem that people die of hunger”
“It’s not my problem that people live on the streets”…
If you don’t work to solve these problems in the way that best makes use of your efforts, you’re not “doing nothing”. You’re contributing to them staying in place.
Remember I said it’s impossible to do nothing. We’re always sending energy out into the world. We are always changing, moving. You have to use energy just to stay in the same place. Why are you spending your energy on keeping things the same? If keeping things the same means keeping suffering the same, then you’re responsible for that suffering.
Get moving. Stillness is an illusion. Change is inevitable, so make it positive.