An abusive man asked his ex-wife to forgive him; she said she did but that it wouldn’t bring him peace because, although he was sorry, he hadn’t repented. Being sorry isn’t repenting. Repentance means change. It means going the other way. A thief may be sorry, especially if caught, but shows no repentance until the thieving ends, honest work begins and giving replaces getting in the thief’s character.
Repentance is not ‘a religious thing’; it’s closely tied to ‘choice and consequence’, to ‘cause and effect’.
When a child teases a dog, should the child be upset when the dog bites back? When a woman abuses her husband (or vice versa), how can she complain when he abandons her? When a little girl is brought up to be ‘sexy’, why do her parents throw her out when she gets pregnant in her teens? When children are taught by corporations that corruption is a justifiable business tactic, then the corporations have no one to blame but themselves when those children grow up to destroy them through corruption.
The whole world suffers from negative choices caused by simple greed.
Greed dominates governments, economies and problem-solving. There are many problems. Riches, power and fame are important to the greedy. I recall a very graphic cartoon, representing governments and big business in its many forms as grossly obese, pig-like tycoons slobbering over a stew of tiny, skinny humans and complaining that there was no meat on the bones; the stew-pot was the world.
Greed with its rapacious ‘get’ mentality is everywhere, far outweighing the world’s givers because most of humanity is left with nothing to give.
Hate will never conquer hate. We must consider ‘cause and effect’ when we make decisions, and also when we’re about to react to somebody or something – if we’re quick, we can usually save ourselves and others some grief. Sometimes our choices are not seen by others as we see them and this can have its own effect, but we are no longer the cause. If somebody wants to argue and we don’t, then we don’t; it doesn’t matter what the other party thinks they’ve won; actual fighting for survival may be unavoidable; in the end, God knows all the truth and that’s what really matters.
Truth, in the end, is never relative. Truth is absolute. Every effect has its cause, every choice a consequence.