There Are No Villains Out There

Abhishek Paul
2 min readNov 28, 2018

Every hero I’ve read about or seen growing up has a villain — Batman has the Joker, Rama had Raavanan, David had Goliath and even Tom has Jerry. I knew whom to root for and whom to blame — things were black and white.

I’ve unconsciously taken this categorization into my interactions in the real world — be it a teacher in school, a colleague or manager at work or a relative in the family. I would resort to blaming and fighting these perceived troublemakers.When I lose my temper, I blame the rash driver, my daughter / wife’s carelessness or the thoughtless actions of a colleague / relative — the problem was always outside myself. I had conveniently cast myself in the role of a hero and the other party was the villain. I only ended up feeding my ego and making things worse.

A century ago, when a newspaper editorial asked the question, “What’s wrong with the world?”,GK Chesterton simply wrote back with the response, “I am. Yours truly, GK Chesterton.” He helped me identify the villain correctly — it is the man staring back at me in the mirror. The real villain has been unmasked and I now realize who my daily battle is with.

I’m starting with the man in the mirror
I’m asking him to change his ways
And no message could have been any clearer
If you want to make the world a better place
Take a look at yourself, and then make a change

-“Man in the Mirror” by Michael Jackson