Because everyone has the right to be truly free and happy
Having one of those down days when nothing seems to be going right? Are you feeling like the world is against you? Are you starting to doubt your direction?
Then stop right there. I have something that can help, and it is the simple act remembering the kindnesses that others have, and are bestowing on you right now. All you need to do is to take some time to think about the generosity that has allowed you to be alive, in the place you are in, with the virtues and possessions you have, and with the facilities to help you survive, grow and thrive. You will soon see how the whole world is united in support of you.
Let me get you started. Your parents and carers are a great place to start. They have shown you boundless kindness. They kept you from harm and worked hard to ensure you had food, clothing and an education. They spent sleepless nights caring for you when you were sick, and supported you through all of the emotional traumas of growing up. They also bestowed the kindnesses of discipline and respect and helped you develop all of the skills and virtues you have today. Then of course there are your teachers who worked tirelessly, without much pay to teach you the skills you needed to make a living, and to be a good citizen. Numerous friends have been kind, providing you with support, companionship, and sharing their own possessions and time. Employers have kindly provided you with work, knowledge, money to survive, and (hopefully) a safe workplace.
Lets go wider now and reflect upon the more mundane things that we take for granted. For example, every morning your breakfast is the result of innumerable kindnesses. There is tremendous effort involved in planting, caring for, harvesting and processing the cereal you eat, all done by people toiling in the fields or factories. Your milk comes from friendly (but likely weary) cows, with the added labour of farmers and factory workers as well. The metal in your spoon has had to be mined, transported, crafted and delivered to the shops. The shops themselves are acts of kindness, providing a central and pleasing place for you to get what you need. Don’t stop there, think about all the kindnesses wrapped up in the clothes you wear, the house you live in, the services that make your life easy, safe, clean and healthy (e.g. doctors, garbage disposal, public transport, police, internet etc etc etc etc).
But what about those people that make your life difficult, that seek to harm you or just like obstructing your goals? Well, in their own ways they are also providing you with a kindness. They teach you patience, courage and perserverance. Without these qualities you would never succeed.
As you can see, there are countless kindnesses bestowed upon you every day, by people both near and far, known and unknown. I hope that reflecting on these kindnesses has helped you feel more:
I know some of you may be saying that these are not kindnesses, people do these things only for selfish motives like power or money. Well, they may. But I ask you, if the result of their actions helps you in any way, then is it not a kindness?
Besides, I prefer to think that kindness is a natural and fundamental part of all of us. Check out the next post for more on this.
Until then, here is a little reminder from He-He to remember the kindness every day.