Monday, November 4, 2013

Choosing Action Over Indifference - When Kindness Matters Most of All.


“That word is 'willing.' It's an attitude and spirit of cooperation that should permeate our conversations. It's like a palm tree by the ocean that endures the greatest winds because it knows how to gracefully bend. ” ― Stephen Kendrick

I had a bit of an upset this weekend, and completely owing to my own oversight and carelessness. You see, for the first time in over...oh, 15 odd years...I inadvertently, and completely mistakenly...overdrew my account.

It was simply a matter of timing really. And, remembering to transfer funds with sufficient enough time to post before all of the other transactions had gone through.

Have I mentioned this to be a place of full and honest disclosure? I have certainly bared my soul enough time for you to realize, that even the most mindful of musers can drop the occasional ball.

That's life, my dears - it happens. Even, to the best of us rambling Buddhist souls.

As soon as I discovered the error, I went to my bank - first to apologize, and then, to fix. But as I stepped to the counter, and began to tell of my upset - I could see the teller already pulling a rather unsympathetic face.

"I'm sorry," she pursed, "there's simply nothing to be done."

And, with that - I hung my head and walked away. But, just as soon as my hand touched that door - I heard a most welcomed voice say, "Hey there, how can I help you."

And through some quick cleverness, and careful review of my account - in short time, everything was made right once again.

"I don't understand," I said...with disbelief hinged to my tone, "the associate there said nothing could be done. But in a few moments, you've done so very much."

To which he replied quite simply, I might add, "She wasn't unable, just unwilling to help."

Wow, and isn't that always the case? When an instantaneous flicker defines the moment between reaching out and walking away?

My dears, we have opportunities for kindness within each day. Wrapped tenderly, and begging one our attention.

And we? We are faced with one simple decision - either to act with kindness, or just turn away.

What do you choose on this day? 

For me, I choose compassion over complacency, and action, always over indifference...

And, with love in my heart and fire in my soul...I will dare to bring kindness here.

In closing, I would like to share the words of poet Naomi Shihab Nye - I do hope you'll enjoy.

Much love, and many blessings my most beautiful friends ~ and may kindness permeate every aspect of your being.

Kindness

Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand,
what you counted and carefully saved,
all this must go so you know
how desolate the landscape can be
between the regions of kindness.
How you ride and ride
thinking the bus will never stop,
the passengers eating maize and chicken
will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness,
you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing. 
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.

Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to mail letters and
     purchase bread,
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
it is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you every where
like a shadow or a friend.