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HAT Forum - "What Does it Mean to be a Good Person"

  • The 519, Room 304 (check lobby screen to be sure) 519 Church Street Toronto, ON, M4Y 2C9 Canada (map)

Suggested by Tanya Long

Do you consider yourself to be a good person? Am I a good person? I am at that stage in my life (mid 70s) where I’m looking back, evaluating, summing up the highlights and the regrets. Underlining much of this self-searching is the question “Have I been a good person?”. This leads to a number of other questions that I invite you to consider:

·       What does it mean to be a good person

·       Where does our understanding of goodness come from

·       Is it enough to have “good” feelings and “good” values if these are not backed up by action

·       What prevents people from doing good – fear, greed, jealousy, lack of awareness, laziness, other

·       Does one bad act, i.e. seriously injuring someone while driving under the influence, make one a bad person

·       Why do we think it is so important to be, or be thought of as, a good person

·       Are most of us under the illusion that we are better than we really are

·       Why does social media make it so easy for good people to do bad things

·       If you were absolutely certain that you would never be found out, are there bad things you would do

·       Are there situations that justify good people doing bad things

Anne Frank “All of us are born with a basic goodness.”  Do you agree?

Friedrich Nietzsche “There is not enough love and goodness in the world to permit giving any of it away to imaginary beings.” Spoken like a true humanist?

Stephen King “It’s better to be good than evil, but one achieves goodness at a terrific cost.” What cost?

NOTE: The HAT Forum adheres strictly to the City of Toronto Policy on Non-Discrimination (