There is nothing so frustrating as to be ignored or misunderstood. But funny we always are and do with each other. As I go about my life and business I’m often told that it’s all that I must do – mind my own business and leave others with theirs.
Are you sure that’s smart? Are you sure that’s compassionate? Are you sure that’s what being human is all about?
Smart is smart when you know that everything a person does stands connected to his neighbor or to the next person beside him, stranger or not. You can’t just go around brandishing your brand of living, speech, or behavior not caring who gets bumped or knocked down by your shadow as you pass it by. The day or moment, or on a larger scale as the world, does not center on you --- alone. It is composed of zillions of other creatures of life which share the center stage with you. They too matter as you do. They’ve got their own stories to tell and deserve to be heard. They’ve got their own ambitions or dreams and deserve to pursue it. They’ve got their desires, passions, and love and deserve to feel or express it. They’ve got their own share of sorrows and pain and deserve to be comforted and cared for. They are so much you – as you are so much them. Understanding this is being smart.
‘Am I my brother’s keeper?’ So you think that a miserable-looking man in ragged clothes dirty mien, roaming the streets begging for a penny does not concern you. Or a middle-aged guy looking out through the bars of his lonely cell is his just reward and that makes you feel safe. Or when thousands go hungry in a country far away is the fault of their lousy government and not yours. Or that the pedophile pouncing on young innocent victims is alright just as long as he doesn’t swoop down on your territory or your own brood. Oh but that concerns you – everything that is wrong whether it touches you directly or not – will concern you because it has the potential to hurt or harm you. But you have the power to change things if you want to. You may not be the government with all the resources in your hands nor a billionaire who can send off plane loads of food to
If you think that you are given life to do as you wish, the answer is no. Yes, we do mind our days with jobs we work at from 9 to 5 24/7, get married, raise families, send children to school but that’s not all there is to life and living. There’s more entwined there because you stand connected to the world outside too that will surely engage your fullest capacity, ability, or talent if you look hard and listen well. And that does not simply operate in your own small circle of family or close friends although it can begin there. It’s a huge expanse which covers your community, to people you’ve never seen before in your whole life, and to the world at large. One voice or one small step or one lighted candle can lead to bigger and better things for a greater number of people.
Do what you can with what you are and what you have to shape lives, to bring hope, to tell your brothers regardless of race, color or creed that you see and are looking, that you hear and are listening. That is what being human is all about. And may you be blessed a hundredfold for it.