Every time has it own evil, but a human being can still be good, wrote Maria Dermoût, the late Indo-Dutch novelist.
Just as we judge the evils of times gone by, the future will pass its judgment upon us—what we did, how we let it happen, what we neglected. Certainly there is as much underserved great harm today as in times past. But what we know is that even in the worst of times, there were people who spoke out, stood up, and continued to be good, kind, and just.
Some periods make it easier to be virtuous than other times. Yet even under the worst of tyrannies, there are good people—noble spirits who manage to express themselves, extend a hand, and open their homes and their hearts to those in distress.
It is when we are challenged that our character emerges. It is then, under these difficult circumstances, that we attempt to find the balance between our inner and outer beings.
Compassion is always at hand, and the ability to express loving-kindness is always present.
This is what life is for: to live with others in such a way that love, peace, and justice may find a secure home, no matter how trying the times, even if that security lasts only for a day.