As most of you probably know, Roger Ebert passed away recently. You may only know him from giving ‘thumbs up’ to movies, but he was also a kind man, a philosopher, and just a good person in general. Here is an article from Salon.com that re-prints an essay from his book “Life Itself: A Memoir.” It’s a wonderful essay that has a lot of comforting and insightful things to say. Given our recent discussion of kindness, I want to share this quote, which I think gives you a nice snapshot of the kind of person Roger Ebert was,
“Kindness” covers all of my political beliefs. No need to spell them out. I believe that if, at the end, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always know this and am happy I lived long enough to find it out.
Thanks for everything, Mr. Ebert. I hope your celestial locomotive* reached it’s destination quickly, and you got to sample everything in the food car.
*This is a reference to the essay linked above.