“If you were stuck in a situation, what would have you done?”
Last term, I had a floating subject, which I thought would be another usual class that would be full of theories and readings. But, to my surprise, I was privileged to encounter a professor who was very observant and critical in his view of life. Instead of just learning the terminologies and analyzing business cases, I also understood and learned more about the valuable things in life. I often caught myself being enlightened by his advice and lessons about the outside world. I would nod my head in agreement with his words and attempt to apply it in my life. However, there was one time wherein I was too absorbed or attacked—by his quotation: “For evil to prosper, the good people [must] do nothing.”
No matter how kind and humble we are, admit it or not, we all have crossed upon a time in which we forced ourselves to think that what we have encountered could not be helped. Like passing by helpless beggars who are lying on the murky streets, we would think that we do not have spare change, or we begin to rush into our homes with the thought of them being dangerous, so we end up leaving the ones who are in need instead of helping them. Who would know, if we would have given them a little of what we earn or a few snacks that we bring, it could probably help them live another day.
Another instance would be passing by a friend crying alone in misery. Would we sacrifice our time and effort into helping a person in need or would we do nothing and pretend as if we did not come across anything at all? In other circumstances wherein we would see people needing help, such as seeing a student getting bullied, we choose to ignore it. Instead of stopping the ones who are doing such acts, we would ignore what we have witnessed, or we would sometimes even turn to the other side since we are too terrified to bear the consequences. We would think of ourselves before we think of others, and that is where indifference begins.
Oftentimes, we would turn a blind eye to all of the evil things we see, which is the root cause of all of the problems we face. Even when we are already witnessing the wrongdoings in front of us, we still tend to think of certain excuses which would make us believe that we could not do anything to make things right. This is the reason why there are no evident changes for the betterment of the world. We would usually leave it up to the authorities or to the ones who have the “power” to fix it and make things better. We rely too much on them that we always fail to recognize the fact that each person is needed to change the world. In our society today, it is a bit ironic how we would constantly complain about the numerous issues that are happening in the planet and blame them on the fault of the authorities when being indifferent is our own choice—when doing nothing is our own fault.
We may not have much money or influence to help, but in our own ways, we can all make a difference. By helping correct immoral actions and mistakes that we face, it is already enough to transform the lives of others. Even the smallest things we do may have a huge impact on the people we meet, to the point that a simple pat on the back or a flash of a smile could instantly save a person from his despair.
As what my professor mentioned, “If you want to be happy, help somebody.” We may not know what happens after we have done our part, but the feeling of joy that we were able to help a person will remain in our hearts. On the other hand, if we simply disregard it, the feeling of guilt and regret that we left someone who is in need of aid may remain in our minds.
Ultimately, we let the little wrong acts happen because we tend to overlook their consequences. By just throwing a piece of candy wrapper at the road, we may not be aware, but it could contribute greatly to plastic pollution. Likewise, a few harsh words thrown to another person may cause the development of depression. We tend to care less and take it lightly, but the little things do matter. It may not have a big impact on us, but it may change the lives of the people around us. In the same way, others may have a huge influence on us even if they do the simplest of things. That is how our world is shaped, how our world turns out to be. By now, we could either do something to make it right, or leave it be. Whatever lays in the future all depends on what we do in the present. The time we finally decide to not be indifferent is the time we finally begin to make a difference.