What is a “Good” Person?

svgdfgWe want to be “good” people, and we want those we love to be “good” people. What is a good person? Here is the answer all the great teachers in the world give to that question.

1- A good person is honest with himself as well as with others. He refuses the darkness, refuses hiding, and refuses lies. Truth is his absolute.

2- A good person is unselfish, self-giving, and generous. There are two kinds of people: givers and grabbers. Be a giver, not a grabber.

3- A good person is loyal, trustable, reliable, and responsible. He always keeps his promises.

4- A good person is moral. He listens to his conscience. He has an inner life, a character. It’s not perfect, but it’s there.

5- A good person is compassionate. He listens to others’ pains, even when they hurt him and upset him. He never turns his back on others.

6- A good person is humble, not arrogant. His reaction to bad people is: “There but for the grace of God go I.” He never sneers.

7- A good person is courageous. He is willing to fight for the good and to suffer for this fight. This virtue is always hard (especially for modern Americans, who have richer and more pain-free lives than anyone in the history of the world) and it takes a long time to cultivate it.

8- A good person is happy when he sees others’ happiness, happy when he finds beauty, truth or goodness anywhere. A good person is happy being good.

9-A good person is obedient, pious, and reverent and respectful to true and rightful authority, not out of weakness but out of strength.

10- A good person is grateful. He knows life is a gift.

3we4rtFor more practical wisdom, I recommend Peter Kreeft’s excellent work entitled Before I Go: Letters to Our Children about What Really Matters. The philosopher sits down and records what he believes is of utmost importance for his kids to have after he is gone. This blog is from pages 18-19 of this wonderful book. I highly recommend it to all lovers of the good life.

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