Leave a Little Joy Around

Is destruction that harms no one a moral sin?

Interesting thought. You come to an old farmhouse, long abandoned in a great stretch of land long since reclaimed by nature. There’s a little chapel out back, and by some miracle the lovingly-crafted stained glass window in the front is still intact. It’s a pretty thing as the sunlight strikes it, catching your eye as you hike. The chapel is so run down that getting into it is easy, and on the inside the pattern made by the morning light through the prismatic glass lends an air of great wonder to the dusty and long-forgotten interior.

No one has owned or used this chapel in years, decades. Is it okay to throw a stone through that window to satisfy the desire that so many humans have – that desire to use destruction as a way of feeling in control?

I say no. I think, though you harm no one, there is a reason not to do so.

Humans need joy, and wonder, and the unusual. As an input that leads to the creation of so many of our great works, it’s vastly underrated. Yes, we need knowledge and we need reason. But we need something else, some catalyst, to make it all work.

There are more ways for humans to be inspired than there are stars in the heavens, and you never know which thing may be exactly what someone else needs. Wonder is a resource. An input that can make the world better, even if you’re not the one who will do so with it. So leave it be – or even better, find ways to share it, uncover it.

It’s better than destruction. Joy always is.

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