Heart Ki

Allowing the Good Seed to Thrive

small plant in a bubbleThere is a common, core hurt about living in society. And that is, when one individual chooses to do something “bad”, negative, unscrupulous, not only does he gain a competitive edge other other individuals — one that may be considered unethical and unfair — but also, there may not be anyone or anything willing, or able, to effectively prevent him from engaging in that behavior.

Furthermore, the individual who chooses the unethical, dishonest route may even be rewarded in its behavior, in favor of those who restrain themselves from doing so.

In this sense, negativity is, pragmatically, a viable, working option.

And there is a fundamental sense of vulnerability, of lack of support, when one tries to do the good thing, to be respectful and ethical regarding others. Because it makes such an individual vulnerable, and/or at a disadvantage, to those who aren’t making that choice.

It is often the case, one way or the other, that the positive-minded people, who are willing to make an effort, question themselves: “What’s the purpose of trying to be good thing, then, if it’s an uphill struggle? If doing the unscrupulous things gives others an edge? What’s the point of doing the right thing?”

“If the pretending, unscrupulous, negative manager rises in the ranks while the committed, loyal, brilliant inventive employer is always muffled and not acknowledged, because it doesn’t have that shameless savvy that twists and turns and makes one sound purposeful even when he’s not?”

“If the bullies are allowed to roam free inside the school, and are allowed to stand just outside the school gates robbing and molesting younger kids and there’s seemingly nothing that can be done to stop this?”

“If the politician that doesn’t speak his mind, whose words don’t match its practical intentions, seems to get elected over and over, and is allowed to roam free on his own accord?”

“If even those who acknowledge such a less-than-caring approach, often excuse it with ‘sometimes it’s necessary’, or ‘in an ideal world’…”

“Why do the Right Thing?” One of the most fundamental questions asked by Man.

The values and motivations to do so are often pieced together by religion, principles, ethics, codes of conduit, morality, law and rule. In part, from thinkers and spiritual leaders in an effort to guide humanity; in part from lawmakers, in order for the collective to function orderly.

But it’s safe to say that the bad seed is largely, and often, allowed to roam loose, and many times valued over integrity and alignment. We kill our saints yet let the daemons run freely (sometimes to kill the saints) – both literally and metaphorically.

We’ve come to expect dishonesty as a common behavior; and we doubt, and even discourage, the intention, effort, and dedication, of someone who attempts to do what he considers is the correct option.

Note that classifying something or someone as “bad”, “bad seed”, “daemon” and “saint”, is neither definite nor absolute. Life is not a comic strip, a black-and-white story. Each situation has multiple sides, each human being is infinitely complex, and every Soul has a positive core than can be tapped (in my opinion).

However, I also believe it is possible for anyone to, at any given point, to choose a clearly negative option: the option that does not commit, does not care, that is unfair, unethical, insensitive, devoid of compassion or empathy, that causes suffering without wondering, that doesn’t protect, and instead preys on the unwary and takes advantage of the vulnerable.

In this essay I will attempt to demonstrate how doing the “right” thing is more beneficial, in a pragmatic sense, than the negative egotistical choice.

Case Study: The Competition Among Trees

I recently saw a video online that illustrated the idea perfectly.

The video explained that trees in a forest evolved to grow as tall as possible, in order to get to the sunlight above other trees beside them. Investing so many resources to grow a large tree trunk, over a long period of time, made only sense to the point that the tree could reach the sunlight while competing with others over it.

Trees in theory could bypass growing a long trunk and sprout their branches nearer the ground level. This would be the easy way: the least amount of resources spent by the tree, for the same sunlight. But doing so meant that a single tree that decided to grow a little longer would immediately steal the sunlight from the shorter ones. All it took was one tree to start to compete, start playing hardball, for all others to start losing sunlight. So all trees are forced to invest an optimum amount of resources to grow their trunks as high as possible, so as not to loose the height war.

For all trees to use the least amount of resources and grow small trunks, they all would need to agree to grow the same, and guarantee that, in the event that one decides on its own to grow more, it is immediately stopped by others. Since this is not the case, they all need to participate in the race.

Now, by no means I wish to criticize trees. There are many more things to consider in such in the actual equation, besides the analogy. For example, the need for trees to get out of the reach of leaf-eating herbivores. Also, the fact that having a tree canopy creates multiple environments for other types flora and fauna.

Finally, that natural selection produces tried and tested designs for living organisms, and that therefore there is value and quality control in the idea of competition.

Nevertheless, this example is a good analogy of the idea that, even though the majority has a notion of how life could be easier as a whole, it doesn’t actually unite, agree, come together, and cooperate, in order to prevent negative egotistical behavior from being a viable option.

Let’s put it this way: in simple terms, if trees could agree and cooperate not to compete, they could set an optimum collective trunk height that could get them away from ground herbivores – but without the added effort of having to compete with each other.

The Relative Worth of Negativity

You can argue that the presence of the negative element, and difficulty, is what brings strength and validity to methods, challenges, and trials.

It’s what makes the test valuable. It’s what gives merit, and makes the good choice far more difficult than the easy, careless one.

The more difficult the exam is, the more value it conveys to the student that passes it. This is why Earth is such an extremely tough test.

It’s the individuals in charge of football (soccer for North Americans) that are against the implementation of automatic goal-line technology to instantly know, without error, if a ball has crossed a line. Because, according to their perspective, the human error and uncertainty element of the referee, is part of the value of the sport.

It’s exposure to the disease that makes you immune. It also removes the weak and frail and less able, thus strengthening the collective.

And it is true — to a point.

This principle assumes all individuals are working ultimately as separate entities from each other, left to fend for themselves. In that way, each individual is strong enough to carry its own weight.

But, is it the ultimate step in the working of systems? Is it the ultimate, most optimal step, or stage, of functioning as a group and society?


Leaving the performance of the collective dependent on exposing each individual to negativity is not optimal. It only gets you so far. It hampers the growth of the unit as a whole.

(1) From the perspective of the collective, allowing for the negative individualistic route to be a viable option is a sub-optimal, non-optimized way of functioning.

(2) There’s an excess of energy that is lost within the system, that doesn’t need to happen. There are further steps to the journey.

(3) Just because nature does it, doesn’t mean it’s written in stone — specially for the consciousness of man, which is an evolution from within nature itself.

The principle of learning from challenge is not to be completely discarded, for without challenge there can be no growth.

But the issue is about tolerating negativity within the system, as a normal or desirable occurrence, to the degree that it destabilizes its functioning.

What would happen to the human body, an organism, if every cell had to compete with each other for resources? With a few exceptions (and interpretations) that doesn’t happen. There’s a basic level of agreement and functioning that allows the body to work as a unit. Instead, negativity – in the form of germs, viruses, cancer cells, whatever is foreign and harmful to balanced working of the organism – is dealt by the immune system, by the organism’s defenses, not by each cell individually.

Having the individuals act as basically separate entities prevents the collective from moving a step ahead, fully acting and cooperating in unison, to their common good.

An organism is fine in having parts of itself that are “soft”, vulnerable, as long as the parts responsible for security and protection are in place and working.

A Matter of Optimization

From a human perspective, this is a question of how much suffering are you willing to allow each individual to endure. This is the bottom line, the only one. It is a matter of humanity, rather than a mechanistic ‘engineering’ analysis, if you will.

But from the perspective of a “system” (society), this is fundamentally a question of optimization.

Given a specific system, and an option that clearly optimizes it, would you not implement it?

Would it not benefit the sport of football if you were to introduce goal-line technology? Wouldn’t it cut down and limit space for controversy, lapses of judgement, and dare I say, potential corruption and rigging? And if so, would that make the sport better, or worse?

Sometimes I watch older football games of previous decades, and I watch in horror how sometimes the pitches were more about mud than grass, and thus the spectacle more about fighting ‘kicking the ball’ than finesse, tactics, and art. Today many of those pitch conditions would be considered hazardous and unprofessional to play in. Maybe it gave charm to the old times… but would you go back and lower the standards of the quality of pitches?

Would you go back to feudalism and solve everything with melee battles, hacking each other with sword and axe? Again, maybe there was charm and romance to it. Maybe there are movies made about it. But would you do ittoday? Would you really hack and maim, and be willing to end your days in a field full of smelling corpses, in the name of your landlord?

Some changes may be debatable, as it’s meant to be. Others, however, are necessary, and straightforward, for making the next step, for taking a given system to its next level. It’s a matter of common sense and discernment.

It’s a matter of evolution.

The Next Level

Society will reach its next level, its next stage, when we are able to unite and agree on the positive values we stand by, and are able to detect and prevent negativity from being a viable option.

We will be on another level, when, the moment a bully targets a single weaker kid in a school environment, all parents, teachers, caretakers, and other students immediately acknowledge this and place the boy under scrutiny, simply not allowing such a thing to happen. It’s not about rules and regulations, but about the human sensitivity to spot and acknowledge violence and oppression, and not allow it to flourish.

We will be on another level, when any person in an organization that displays an action that is unscrupulous or unethical, that doesn’t come from a perspective of caring and commitment, he/she it is prevented from rising up the hierarchy; and only people with passion, commitment, and merit are acknowledged and rewarded.

We will be on another level, when any politician — or any other leader — that starts dissociating its intentions from its actions is immediately discouraged and maybe even removed from its position, being this decision made by the majority of the population, whose consciousness is sensitive enough for dishonesty and unscrupulous behavior to be perfectly clear. Without rules or amendments: simply discernment.

We will be on another level, when, as people gather around the conveyor belt at the airport waiting for luggage, everyone stands back so that everyone can see all bags all the way; the first person to ever advance forward is immediately prevented by all others from doing so; the negative egotistical behavior of ‘taking advantage of the opportunity’ simply won’t be allowed, or be strongly discouraged.

A pragmatic approach should be used to discourage and prevent negativity, not excuse it.

Faith in Humanity

The next step requires this type of assertive union-consciousness. One that acknowledges positivity as something to protect and nurture, and that is assertive, that takes actual steps, in doing so.

One that encourages self-expression, independence, difference, and maybe even tolerate a degree of rebellion, of disruption and dissonance, if you will — but not negative, egotistic behavior.

One that not only displays acts of compassion and empathy, but that it’s equally determined in preventing situations of unbalance in the first place.

One that allows for difference, and individuality, and does not judge — but simultaneously is not afraid to prevent and cancel behavior that is detrimental to the quality of existence for all its individuals.

One that actually allows the “good” seeds to thrive, without leaving them out in the open to fend for themselves, with fear of being left vulnerable and unprotected.

When this will be possible, I don’t know.

How will this come to be, I don’t know.

If it will have flaws and defects — possibly.

If it will be the ultimate answer — probably not.

But it’s certainly what’s missing now. It’s the next step to take.
You may already see signs of such behavior — of individual or collective kindness or solidarity — on multiple points and circumstances across the globe.

When you see them, you generally use such expressions as ‘faith in humanity”.

Because you know you’re witnessing a different energy, one of kindness and generosity, and collective union, that touches you, and that didn’t exist that much before.

Allowing Cancer

The collective decision about detecting and actively discouraging and preventing negativity is akin to a well-oiled immune system.

This is the next step in the evolution of consciousness.

In the previous analogies, the tolerance and thriving of negative elements in the collective, is akin to the appearance of cancer in the organism.

Cancer takes advantage of the organism. It doesn’t respect is functioning or balance; it doesn’t play by the rules; and it doesn’t do anything useful. It grows either until it’s tackled, or until the organism is dead.

Cancer just doesn’t care. It lives in denial. It is above termination and thinking about others.

Cancer just grows out of control, using up resources, and disrupting the functioning of everything else, that is attempting to work properly and perform its proper functions.

Without at least the majority of the organism working properly, cancer couldn’t even exist; but it thinks itself better than anyone else anyway.

When an organism admits elements inside of it that don’t work in alignment with the rest, it is sick; it carries a disease.

It is the immune system is what is responsible for detecting and recycling cancerous cells. And in fact it does so constantly, all the time, in an healthy body. It’s an ongoing process.

But if the immune system is not taking action, if it’s inactive or disabled, cancer grows and runs rampant. Because cancer (negativity) is always a potential. Negativity is a polarity in the Universe, and it will always exist and manifest. Philosophically, if you will, negativity is meant to provide lesson. It’s therefore not a matter of eliminating it “for good”, but how to deal with it when it manifests.

Every time you see cancerous characteristics in an element of society — the bloated 1% that has all the wealth of the world; industries that pollute the planet with no regard for it; all things that happen in the dark without anyone knowing — these are the hallmarks of cancer.

These are signs of things prospering in the dark, that don’t really serve the interests of the collective — and that we, as a collective, are allowing. It is negativity running rampant, out of control.

Therefore, the answer for the question “why do the right thing”, why “be good”, is that, from the viewpoint of the system, it benefits all. Doing things properly benefits the working of the collective. You can see this in a spiritual perspective, or in a purely materialistic/mechanistic way. The positive answer benefits the collective, and the individual. However it’s certainly difficult to do so without a fully working immune system.

Doing the easy and non-scrupulous way might benefit and empower the individual beyond what is generally agreed by the system; but this is only because the system itself is not fully optimized and monitoring itself yet.

Defining Negativity

Defining what “negativity” is and what isn’t, will always be open to debate. But that’s a point we’ll always have to work with, because all humans are different.

It will always be a fuzzy definition coming from an individual perspective.

The fundamental issue is not about arriving at a consensual definition — but raising individual consciousness enough so that a basic threshold can be agreed by the majority.

It’s, in part, what is harmful to the working of the collective, and what jeopardizes each individual’s right to freedom and safety.

It’s, in part, a matter of basic awareness and sensitivity.

Everyone knows what is wrong and what is right – at least at a very elementary level. Everyone knows when they witness a behavior which works in prejudice of the collective.

Negativity are those things we say that “build character”.

Negativity is the bullying kid that picks on the weaker kid for no reason other than that he can, and that it makes him feel better.Negativity is in the egotistical disrespect. Regardless of the family and emotional reasons for the bully to do this, it can’t be allowed either way.

Negativity are those things that you say that in a perfect world they wouldn’t exist but are “needed” sometimes.

Negativity is someone with more money telling the ones with less how to behave, enforcing the rules, but in a way that he wouldn’t really do if the roles were reversed. Negativity is in the unbalance, in the disregard for others, when one finds himself with power.

Negativity is a government waging war on another on the grounds of freedom and democracy, when what it really wants is access to oil lines and political influence. Negativity is in the disconnection between talking and doing, in dishonesty, and in the disregard for life itself.

Negativity is when someone is a “douchebag”.

Negativity is in the guy that cuts through the entire lane of traffic, in front of everyone else, to go to the right turn, not bothering to think of the inconvenience it brings to others. Negativity is the egoism, the lack of effort to be minimally flexible (if he asked politely, perhaps some of the other drivers would be willing to allow him to pass).

Negativity is that one tree that thinks it’s smarter than the rest and grows farther than what the others agreed upon. Negativity is in the disregard, in the disrespect.

Negativity is someone passing in front of everyone in a queue without a viable excuse. It gets to you on that a basic level of civil behavior. Negativity is the disregard, the disrespect.

Negativity is very simple.

All of this is highly subjective and circumstantial. Yet, at the same time, on a level of common sense, it’s also something very clear, very easily identifiable.

It is not about moral codes and passing on judgement. It’s not about reading a religious book and condemning those that don’t obey, labeling as sin and “wrong” what differs. It’s not about rules and regulations in a paper written by someone.

It’s about what we simply can’t tolerate it happens, on the human level. In life. It’s about basic human sensitivity and integrity.

Negativity is not when someone is shouting swear words on the street. It’s not believing or speaking something weird of different. It’s not venting or getting angry. Because the person getting angry might actually be right, but not being heard. It’s not about stifling identity and individuality so that we all behave the same.

Negativity is when there’s a fundamental level of disregard for the functioning of the other individuals, to the degree that their own rights to freedom and safety are jeopardized.

Negativity is when bullying kids are loose on the playground terrorizing weaker children, without anyone doing any specific about it. We let our playgrounds be open fields for terrorizing predators.

We let the rest of our lives be the same.

It’s hard enough struggling to succeed at a professional endeavor; having your heart broken by someone you love; deal with the loss of a loved one. These things are more or less inevitable. Kids being emotionally and physically threatened is not inevitable. Children need to be nurtured and groomed; they don’t need to be worrying for their basic safety and peace of mind, living in a state of fear and stress. And neither do we.

That is negativity.

The Fundamental Choice

Regardless of if, or when, we are ready to reach such a state collectively, in a pragmatic manner – this is the next step. It’s the only way we can improve, and this is how we’ll be when we do.

This is not about defining external, arbitrary sets of rules and values that must be enforced or else. That would create a vacant seat for tyranny and despotism.

This is about a choice.

And the choice is, the desire and commitment to not stand for negativity, recognizing that it doesn’t work and it doesn’t serve us.

To not stand for war; for violence; for dishonesty; for lack of transparency; for principles that don’t work.

When the majority desires this, a fundamental change will occur.
We might not agree in the minutia; but we don’t have to. We don’t have to agree on all complex rules and regulations. This is a very objective, practical choice: we wanting to cooperate and live peacefully. The fundamental desire for positivity. For peace. For having a collective that tries to work together no matter what.

It is the basic commitment to not allow the “bad seed”, and to support the basic positive principles of peace, kindness, and cooperation.

Out of the desire, the answers will come.

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