Sometimes my thought process is hard to follow. But I promise, if you hang on to the end, everything will come together when I finally get around to making my point. I don’t know if that is because I have a flare for the dramatic and like big reveals, or I am just terrible at transitioning…
Hypocrisy is a topic worthy of thought. I… can’t stand Hypocrites. Which is unfortunate, considering I am sure that I am one. A lot of my thought on hypocrisy does come from my religion. I am LDS (Mormon). And the scriptures do say “Judge not that ye be not judged.” IE “Don’t be a Hypocrite.” Make sure your own house is clean before you go picking at the way the neighbor does the dusting. That kind of thing.
Obviously, no one likes hypocrites. We hate when someone says something and does another. Or breaks a rule one day and pretends it is important the next. Come time for elections we will judge and accuse a candidate based on whether they “flip-flop” or not.
And yet the value I tend to hold the highest is one’s ability to learn, grow, and improve. Anyone who believes they know everything, who believes the alone hold the truth, have stopped growing as a human as I previous expressed in QotD: An Empty Mind. But, isn’t someone who is steadfast in their beliefs and actions the opposite of a hypocrite?
There is a fine line, and an important one. And that line is this quote. It is OK to do better. It is BETTER to do better. Legitimately striving to do better is NOT hypocritical. As long as there is truth and acknowledgement in that striving. It’s hard, but you must admit where you have failed. Or in the context of ideas and ideals, it is OK to change your mind. But when you do, admit why you used to think as you did, and explain what made you change your mind, that way those around you can benefit from a lesson learned as well. In terms of politics, I hate a “flip-flopper” as much as anyone else. But I would greatly respect any elected official who ADMITTED that while they used to think one way and advocate for a certain thing, their growing experiences and knowledge has CHANGED THEIR MIND. But ignoring the fact that a change took place, and suddenly vilifying something they once stood, and by extension those who voted for them in the first place, without explanation, is hypocrital.
Always a line. And that line has very much to do with acknowledgement.
And perhaps we should remember this in each other. When someone tries to do better, do not ridicule or tear them down by reminding them they were worse in the past. Always encourage others to do better. Always do better yourself. Keep learning. Keep growing. And acknowledge your mistakes, actions, beliefs, and ideals within yourself, especially as they change.