Nightly Random

Some people appear to sow discord, dishonesty or other unenviable things and never pay for it. Others who see this can experience spiritual, emotional and social crises, wondering how it is that bad people profit while good people suffer. If these crises are not addressed, they might cause a person to stop putting forth as much effort, or to cease engaging in good behaviors. Societies therefore try to provide answers about why bad people can prosper.

An answer individuals commonly give to resolve these crises is that life is simply not fair. This is often connected to the concept that nothing is perfect. Another response that is more religiously based is that God (or another higher power) is waiting to punish the bad people in His own time, and that God can use even negative things for His glory. Those who focus on this answer often cite Biblical verses such as Romans 8:28, which says, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.”

The Butterfly Effect

Some people push the idea of “you reap what you sow” one step further, emphasizing the “butterfly effect.” This term refers to the fact that the simple act of a butterfly moving its wings can have an enormous effect on the world by serving as a catalyst for other changes or events. Under this lens, people should be extra careful of what they say and do, because it’s not always clear how large the ramifications of their speech or behaviors are.