KINDNESS OF STRANGERS

A friend in Toronto told me he liked living in Canada because people he doesn’t know are helped by the taxes he pays and he is helped by people he doesn’t know who share in the health care system.

I thought about the work I do helping people to know themselves. I thought about the writing over the Delphic columns that says, “Know Thyself.” I thought about Shakespeare’s line, “to thine own self be true…” and I thought about that Polonius said it and did that make a difference.

It’s really important to me that we help each other. And it’s really important that we don’t choose who gets what. That the equal sharing implies no “whites only,” or as in Orwell’s book, no “just pigs” signs. In my deepest heart I want all people to be helped. I don’t want to enlist my own biases and help only my own group. I want my heart open to all. However I read Malcom Gladwell’s Blink and know it’s not really possible for me to override my humanness.

The other day I went to a local Chamber of Commerce meeting. It was my first and I was very nervous and didn’t know what to expect. It just happened to be next to a liquor store. The meeting was one of their “after hours” meetings and everyone was coming after their work day. I found parking in back of the line of three buildings and two men arrived at the same time. They were in a truck and it was obviously the end of their day too. We all smiled at each other and one of them put this (to my eye) very large spit about three feet in front of his walking into the liquor store. At the moment of the spit I didn’t know which place he was heading toward – I doubt there was another person who wouldn’t have known, but I didn’t. But we continued on our ways smiling and, for my part, free of pre-judgement.

I don’t know if I could have been as balanced had I not been meditating on the “oneness” of our world. Could I have been so, as my daughter says, “crunchy,” if we had been in line together? If he had been “chosen” first for something? Would I have worried about him had I been “chosen” and he left.

I can’t answer these, they’re just useless ruminations unless I learn from them. Unless I take them to heart and hope the next time I have an opportunity to help or be helped those signs of tribal prejudice won’t be legible to me.

I took this photo at the top of a vortex zone in Sedona, AZ. Four of us were walking, none knew each other, one was facing serious health issues and we all met in the moment to a healing.

3 thoughts on “KINDNESS OF STRANGERS

  1. to truly be free of judgements one would have to be quite detached and not care much about people/things… that’s why it is almost impossible.

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