Humanity 101

We should be teaching our kids how to be people.

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Humanity 101

There have been a lot of horrible things going on in the world lately. That’s a sentence I feel like I’ve said countless times over recent years, but sadly, the horrible things keep happening.

Humanity still exists though and I believe it is as powerful as ever. You only have to look at the reaction from all over the globe to the Paris terrorist attacks to know this. Humanity pulls us up and warms our heart during these dark times. It brings people from many different walks of life together when certain factions are trying their best to pit us all against each other.

I don’t believe we are in a humanity crisis. But I think that it’s important we continue to work on our ability to be human, to be kind and to be compassionate. It starts with the younger generations. They are our future and we need our future to be bright and stay that way.

In the wake of Paris and Beirut and all the terrible things that have happened recently, I’ve been thinking about this concept that humanity can be taught as much as it is already built into someone. Being a good human can be tricky for some and like all characteristics, it is a skill.

Being kind and compassionate are traits that parents need to pass onto their children. But what if your parents were never really taught or shown kindness and compassion though? And maybe their parents weren’t either? Think about it in this simple form – if your parents never learnt how to ride a bike from their parents, chances are you probably didn’t learn either.

I believe it’s time we all take some responsibility for teaching each other to be better human beings. Education is key to change – maybe it’s time for ‘Humanity Class’ in schools? People study ‘Humanities’ at university – let’s get them started early at Primary and High School.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the people I know who appear to have a fault in their humanity line. They need education. They need understanding. I feel like I can help and do my part by at least passing on the things I know or do to try and be a good person. It’s never too late to learn something and whether they take it on board or not, isn’t it better to at least try to help somebody open their mind a bit more?

There are people trained in the art of understanding humans. I think it’s time we started utilising them more. We’re told to see doctors, dentists, optometrists, etc regularly to make sure we are healthy. Seeing psychologists regularly should also be the norm.

Workplaces have forums and lectures on how to behave (or how not to behave) in the workforce and so forth. Work can be a key environment for bringing out the bad and angry in people – ‘How To Be A Good Person In The Professional World’ has a pretty good ring to it, if you ask me.

Teaching and learning humanity isn’t like teaching and riding a bike. There isn’t a set process of one foot on the left pedal and the other on the right and off you go. But if we focus on the basics of what makes us human and encourage, embrace, show and teach each other ways to be kind and compassionate, it might just be the simplest process to follow.


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I'm a Sydney-based writer who loves music, books, naps, eating and beverages that you can put a lime in. Not necessarily in that order. And I will smile at you if walk past you.