Today, she wanted to plant some seeds we’ve had for a while, and it reminded me of this morbid experiment that I’ve long wanted to do.
Take two plants, treat them very differently and see what happens. To the first, yell at it, demean it, tell it it’s not wanted and useless and will never amount to anything. To the second, bathe it in loving thoughts. However, I’ve never done it. The act of consciously acting that way towards a living thing, well, it’s uncomfortable.
Nevertheless, I proposed this to my daughter today, curious what she’d say. If she said yes, and it demonstrated a difference, she would, for the rest of her life, understand the power of her words towards herself and others.
But… she didn’t need to do that test.
Her – “No. I don’t want to do that. That’s mean.”
Where does that come from, I wonder? Of course, I’ve corrected her when she has talked in an ill manner towards another friend. And, I’ve apologized when I’ve been too stern or harsh with my voice. From these situations, she’s certainly had it reinforced that there is a certain baseline of decency from which to live and to return to should we get off course.
However, I think it’s innate in us. Yes, we have our egos and our animalistic side. Yes, we have our selfish and judgmental thoughts. But I do believe in the innate goodness of most human beings that, given the chance, most will do the right thing. And, I saw it there in my daughter today when I offered her the opportunity to explore very negative ways of talking without consequence.
I think it’s a beautiful thing. I think most people are genuinely good, and it comes from some deeper part of us that is there in childhood.
There was a beautiful outcome from this conversation. I thought we were all done planting, but she asked me to come outside to speak to the plants with her. She wanted to start their lives out with sweet words. I recorded it, and it is a video I’ll always cherish.