Think about it. A life with all the luxuries you can ever ask for. Big car, big house, big business, big name. Big heart? Mmm…I’m not so sure. I bet you’ll go for a life like that, without thinking. Because who doesn’t want to be rich, or famous? You’ll have money, power, everything, but no qualities. No feelings, or politeness, no hatred, no pride. Nothing. Just material. No abstract. Just think; would you still want it?
Now think of a life, without money. Not completely without money, but a life where money is secondary. Where all the things you hold vanity on; are the last things that come to your mind. First comes being a human. First comes kindness. First comes help, first comes love, and first comes selflessness. You’re not a complete do-gooder, you still dislike someone or something, and you still have insecurities and prejudices. But you feel. You feel and you understand others. It’s not like that’s all you do, but it is the most important. You focus on keeping everyone happy. You give everyone the love and respect they deserve, and then, at the end of it all, you think of yourself, and then your possessions.
These two life scenarios are complete opposites, I agree. But think, what would you prefer? None? Both? Somewhere in between?
So let’s start with why this thought struck my mind. I was taking a walk with my friend the other day. It was late in the evening, and we were on the main road. It was drizzling. We were close to our house, and enjoying the rain and the fresh air that came along with it. We were giggling, and joking randomly about what we did that day. Suddenly, an auto- rickshaw passed us. The driver stopped the auto, and asked us if we needed a ride. We told him we didn’t. He smiled at us, and resumed driving, and we resumed walking.
I and my friend spoke of how polite the rickshaw-driver was, and then there was silence. It had been a while since someone had offered help to the either of us, and even though there was silence, I knew what we both were thinking about. Suddenly, she spoke up, “Politeness is so easily misinterpreted as a sin these days. Nobody wants to help.” I smiled at her words, admiring and understanding them. The rest of the walk home, we remained quiet. Her statement lingering somewhere in the air around me, making me wonder, why?
She was right. Some people are so self indulgent these days, that they do not think about others, or help them, or even take them seriously. But again, like a coin has two sides, there are other people who help, and are kind, and who consider other’s opinions. But what I’ve seen lately, is that they’ve been overwhelmed by the arrogant ones. I know it’s a vague statement, and yes, it isn’t true about everyone, but it’s a mere observation.
People have started feeling embarrassed, or guilty to help anyone. No one is going to put you in jail for you supporting or saying the right thing. No one is going to slay you if you help an old man carry his bags, or hold the door of the elevator while somebody’s grandmother gets in. Why are you embarrassed?
Are you embarrassed by some senseless cowards, who think about no one, but themselves? Who are too cocky because of their status – even though, maybe, they don’t even have a status at all- and don’t want to look small by helping others? Is that making you feel small too?
Honestly, it’s completely the opposite. If you help someone, consider their opinion, give them the voice, and let them express their thoughts, or share with them, something that they don’t have, and you do, then it’s going to make you look big. Brave. Courageous. Not even close to small.
Some people are afraid of helping, but they want to show their qualities, and prove their capacity. According to me, if you want to prove to someone, what kind of person you are-may it be your parents, your new boss, an old teacher- start by acting good. Start by acting like a kindhearted person. Start valuing what can’t be valued.
Love, care, help, selflessness, a pat on the back, a reassuring smile, hopeful eyes, appreciating claps. These are the things that are more precious than any gifts you can ever offer to anyone.
You like being loved. You like being cared of. But, have you tried loving? Have you tried caring?
Once you learn to give, you’ll never want to take again. There lies more pleasure in providing, and getting to see a happy face, than being provided and seeing a caring face.
I am not saying drop everything you own, get out of your house, get rid of all your vanities, and start living with the homeless to help them. All I’m saying is that the foundation of a caring person, the foundation of a speckless personality, is in ordinary acts of goodness. Do you admire a person who carries a gun around with him, and bullies everyone on every turn? No. You admire a true-heart, a true human, a good person. A rose in the middle of dry grass. A diamond in the rough.
Be that. Be the rose, be the diamond. Why frown, if you can smile, and have the same thing done faster? Why cry when you can laugh, and try harder?
Having pride is good, definitely good. But being so absorbed in it that you lose all your qualities, and the people around you, that’s foolishness.
You are not going to carry your huge millionaire property with you to heaven. Nor are you going to carry your Mercedes. You’re not going to be remembered because you owned a Rolex watch. You’ll be remembered for what you’ve done. For the brave acts you carried out, simply by offering a helping hand. You’ll be remembered for your million dollar heart, that not even a million dollars can ever buy.
Think about people who give relentlessly. People who fight for the country, putting their life at stake. Think about people who speak up their mind, because it is the right thing to do.
Nobody is small, nobody is big. We may dwell in different worlds, under different circumstances. But under God’s microscope, we’re all the same. Created alike, for thinking alike. But we’ve forgotten that. We’ve forgotten that because we value power more. We value materials more than feelings.
Doing the right things has a different braveness and power hidden in it. All you have to do is discover it.
Invest in people, rather than just investing in business. Your business will grow, and give the money earned to whomever that you’ve left it with, and benefit them. But your ideals, your righteous opinions, and your kindness will also be passed on. And that will not only benefit that particular person, but it can benefit a whole society, and city, a country. The whole world.
Everybody is a revolutionary. Everyone is brave. Everyone is a nice person, deep within, who they’ve tucked away because of the situation they’re in. Everyone is a rose, everyone is a diamond. But everyone is also afraid. Of something or the other.
There is nothing to be afraid of, as long as you’re doing the right thing.
Think about it. You could be the change. You could be the voice and inspiration of tomorrow. All you need is the drive. All you need; is to be a giver, not just a taker. All you need is to be dauntless, and find the dauntlessness in kindness.
Remember loving neighbors,
Without expecting favors.
Look at me, look at you,
Now look at me again,
See we’re not so different.