Kindness: A Path to Healing

13 Nov 2023

Bundjalung poet and editor, Grace Lucas-Pennington, attributed something to me at the Byron Writer’s Festival, but I recall that it came out of a conversation that Grace and I had had together. We were discussing the many fights for rights that abide in these times. We agreed that if everyone fulfilled their obligations, then rights would naturally be enjoyed by all.

As someone who is Indigenous to North Africa, my view is that kindness is obligatory as a human person on the earth at this time. Not kindness as a form of toxic positivity, or ‘good vibes only’. Not kindness that ignores complexity or silences anyone not experiencing intersectional privilege. What is needed is kindness as a kind of clarity and boundary, that sees racism and systemic inequality and doesn’t stand for it.

True kindness knows no borders, transcends language barriers, and bridges cultural divides. It is a universal language that connects people across the globe. It's a language understood by all, regardless of differences. In a world often divided by politics, dogmas, ideologies, opinions and base desires for power and control, kindness has the unique ability to unite us all. It's a reminder that we share a common belonging and obligation to this beautiful planet Earth, and our capacity for compassion is an opportunity to exercise our free will.

Kindness is not a passive quality but an active force for change. It has the power to transform lives, create a ripple effect of positivity, and transcend borders. In our complex and interconnected world, kindness is the thread that can bind us together. So, let us heed the call for kindness, embracing its potential to heal, inspire, and create a brighter future for all.

Author: Michelle Braunstein