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Enter to Win: Free Tickets to the Dalai Lama in NYC

posted by vreiss

Update: Contest ‘Winners’ Announced Here
dalai-lama-10-07-lg.jpg“My religion is kindness.” – His Holiness the Dalai Lama
The beloved Tibetan Buddhist leader has inspired people across the globe with his message of unconditional compassion. Now you have the rare opportunity to see the Dalai Lama in person. He’ll be teaching at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, Friday October 12 to Sunday October 14. Tickets start at $80. You can buy them here.
Beliefnet is giving away 20 pairs of tickets to the teaching. To enter the contest, just post a comment below by October 9, 2007, answering the following question: “What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?”
Make sure to include your email address in the designated area (don’t worry, it won’t be made public). The most original responses–based on the judgment of Beliefnet’s editors–win. Have fun with it. Be creative, and the tickets could be yours. We’ll notify the winners by email and get the tickets to you pronto–for two people to all three days (five sessions) of teachings.
Contest winners will also have the chance to write about their experiences on our new community site, sharing with other members what they’ve learned.
Here’s the legal info. And note, this is not for his general public talk, but three days of teachings.
His Holiness’s talks at Radio City Music Hall will be on Buddhist essential wisdom teachings—the Diamond Cutter Sutra and Seventy Verses on Emptiness by Nagarjuna. Hosted by The Tibet Center and Healing the Divide, the teachings offer an extraordinary chance to receive core insight of the Buddha.
For more information, please visit dalailamany.org or thegarden.com.
This contest is made possible by The Tibet Center , Healing the Divide, and The Gere Foundation.
P.S. Addendum. To be clear, we’re only giving away tickets to the event. We’re not able to provide transportation or accommodations in any way.



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Golda Fleischman

posted October 4, 2007 at 10:40 am


I think the most profound acts of kindness occur where strangers help each other, especially in difficult situations. Of course, this includes people passing on the gift of dhamma voluntarily and lovingly, but also includes someone in a public restroom holding your hair while you are vomiting. But in my line of work–as a public defender–i witness the people society has considered outlaws, criminals, helping one another. At times it is the most touching and rewarding experience. If it merely includes translating for a Spanish speaking client (which I never allow because of malpractice concerns), to the aggravating jailhouse lawyer who gives often bad advice, to just handing someone a dollar to call home. Where both are down on their luck, when both are suffering, and yet one person manages to see past himself and help another in need, that is the most profound, most unexpected, yet most common, kindness.



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Andrea Downes

posted October 4, 2007 at 1:37 pm


I live in New York City…a place where most would think you never find kindness. To an extent, you usually don’t unless there is some kind of tragedy (like 9/11) and people band together for a time and then separate into their own lives, their own world – again.
So the random acts of kindness I do see – helping an elderly person with their groceries or even helping them across the street, going into the street to get a ball for the kids who are playing safely on the sidewalk, a man giving up his subway seat for a pregnant woman (or any woman for that matter). Even when people say “excuse me” or “thank you” or “God Bless You” (when someone sneezes) to strangers, it makes me smile.
But the one act of kindness that always touches my heart (whether I do it or I see it) is when someone helps out the homeless. I’m not talking about giving money to them either. I’m talking about picking them up and taking them to a shelter, giving them food instead of money on the train…or even talking to someone homeless.
What most people don’t understand about the homeless is that for whatever reasons – they have their pride. A lot of them don’t want help. But all of them want to be heard. They want to feel like a human being and sometimes, just talking to a homeless person makes a world of difference. I have been witness to a man that would talk to a homeless man for a year…just small talk…but that was enough for the homeless person to be inspired to get up and get himself together.
Some of the greatest acts of kindness are in the small things.



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Nate W

posted October 4, 2007 at 7:31 pm


The Dalai Lama’s coming to take a position on the faculty here at Emory University…I’m super excited!!!



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Chad Fuller

posted October 4, 2007 at 8:02 pm


I’m not boasting, but the one I can remember most was done by my parents and me.
I was a cart-pusher at Wal-mart and it was Winter. One of my fellow cart-pusher associates had to walk to work every single day because he could not afford a vehicle. He and his wife lived in a shabby apartment complex, and almost all his money was going towards Child Support.
I had a 1991 Camaro at the time, and was going to begin driving a later year model. So after my parents found out about Keith Hadley, who had to walk in the freezing wind and rain (or in the heat during Summer) my dad wanted to know if it would be alright if we gave Keith and his wife the 91 Camaro.
Since I had been reading about random acts of selfless kindness in various books on the Dharma, I didn’t hesitate, and we rushed to his apartment to give the Camaro to him. His grandmother had just died, and apparently he was on his way home (walking) from Wal-mart. We tried to find him on the street but finally found him back at the complex.
He was torn between emotions since his grandmother had passed, but he was very glad to receive a vehicle. He said that having a car was one of his requirements for getting his children back.
Namaste.



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roy

posted October 4, 2007 at 9:37 pm


Just tell God you love him.



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Jason K. Wells, Rainsville, AL

posted October 4, 2007 at 10:33 pm


The most profound act of kindness I’ve ever witnessed is one that I received. I spent many years experiencing the consequences of my own actions. I was an active drug addict, a thief, a liar, and a fool. During this time I caused so many people, which loved
me, harm. My family, I’m sure, was affected the most. Due to my choices and my actions, I went to jail, and almost went to prison. The court system gave me one last chance. I was let out on the streets with no where to go, so I turned to my brother. Everyone told him not to trust me; that I would only do what I had always done. My brother said, “He’s my brother and I love him…if I don’t help him, who will?” Since that day my life has changed. I’ve been clean off of drugs for 3 years; have an excellent job working with good people, and better relationships with people than I’ve ever had. That one act of kindness from my brother changed my life. I am thankful for all the things I’ve lived through, however. Without them, I wouldn’t be prepared to help others facing many of the same problems I’ve faced myself.



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Lynn

posted October 4, 2007 at 10:52 pm


This past August, I flew from NY to St. Louis to pick up my grandmothers dog. Julie is a 13 year old Lhasa Apso and the light of my grandmothers life. When my grandmother had to sell her house and move into a senior housing development, she entrusted Julie to my half sister. Unfortunately, she severely neglected the poor thing. She had become infested with fleas and had lost half her fur. My half-sister was going to put her to sleep. I called my aunt and requested she intervene. It was my aunt who discovered the neglect and got Julie the care she needed to recover.
I flew to my aunt’s to pick up little Julie. Because of the cost involved, I had a connection in Chicago. I figured it would only add about an hour to the total travel time and saved several hundred dollars. My flight from Chicago was delayed numerous times, initially for mechanical issues and ultimately for weather. We we stuck on the plane for about five hours. I was stressed and scared that this poor frightend dog was stuck in a bag at my feet. With the drive to the airport, she had been in the carrier, minus a few walks through the airport, pretty much from 8 in the morning.
Very severe storms rolled through Chicago and people began talking about cancelling the flight. I kept believing it wouldn’t be cancelled. Ultimately, it was and I was terrifed, because I had this poor scare creature in my care and we would be stuck sleeping in the airport. She had refused water all day and she was hungry. We’d have no easy way for her to relieve herself inside a crowded airport terminal.
I called my sister (not the one in St. Louis) and told her we might be stuck in Chicago overnight. She had been posting about our adventures on an online forum she belonged to. One of the people on that forum volunteered to take us in for the night. At first I was scared, but when the flight was cancelled, I called this generous person. I burst into tears. I had no idea how scared I was.
This amazing person drove 2 1/2 hours in a horrific storm. It took anohter hour and a half to get to her house. As we headed back there were trees strewn about the city streets. Traffic lights were out everywhere.
This woman was so generous to drive in such dangerous weather just to ensure a weary traveler and her dog would not be left frightened at an airport. I had never met this woman before, but she was so generous and friend. I kept telling her that I could never thank her enough for helping us out. She said that she did it because she would hope that, if she were in the same position, someone would do it for her. She took exceptional care of us and made sure both my dog and I had a nice meal and a safe, warm place to sleep. I think this is the most amazing act of kindness I have ever experienced.
Oh, and the dog is doing wonderfully now. She is flourishing. She is so happy and playful and loving life. She reminds me every day to live in the present and cherish every moment.



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Paul Garrison

posted October 5, 2007 at 1:56 am


As a youth I spent a lot of time at the video arcade playing Mortal Kombat. You might remember it as the game where you get to perform a fatality that dismembers, decapitates, or otherwise brutally murders your opponent when you win. I frequently stole quarters from my mom and sister to play.
One evening while at the arcade with a friend I noticed a situation at the baseball simulator. In this game a virtual pitcher throws a ball at you while you swing at the virtual pitch with a real bat. The bat is loaded with sensors that translate your swing into the virtual world. I have no idea how heavy or hard the bat is but I am sure getting hit in the head with it is not anyones idea of a walk in the park. On this particular evening a mom is in the batting cage with her son and an arcade attendant. The first time I looked over I did not think much of it and went back to my game. The second time, however, is very different. I saw the arcade attendant holding his head and the little boy clearly upset. It does not take long to realize what has happened. The boy has accidentally hit the attendant in the head with his swing. As the boy, feeling guilty for causing the attendant pain, began to cry the arcade attendant moved in and gave him a hug as if to say “see, I am okay, its okay, don’t be upset.”
Suddenly decapitating my opponent on quarters I stole from my sister did not seem very important. The attendant was hurt, had every reason to get mad, and could have scolded the child for being so clumsy. But he didn’t. Instead, he set his own pain aside to comfort the child without showing any displeasure. It is difficult to describe how much this moment struck me. The arcade looked different and my skin tingled in an unusual way. As I recall it now I struggle to hold back tears. I was thirteen at the time and just begining to figure out that I knew everything and did not need anyone other than myself. This moment humbled me and temporarily dispelled the youthful arrogance that would get me into considerable trouble during the years to come. When I got back home that was basically all I could think about.
I am twenty four today, poised to graduate college in the spring, and have not given much thought to this night until now. Since then I have witnessed and caused many moments some kind but many not so. Whether I win the tickets or not is not important to me. I am greatful that I have retapped this long lost memory. It goes to show how much doing the right thing can impact people even if we do not ever see the results of our good will. There is no way the attendants could have know his natural kindness would have me up late twelve years later trying to put it into words. I think this is the sort of thing the Dali Lama would want, and what beliefnet is trying to do.



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Yair M

posted October 5, 2007 at 7:51 am


There was a time that me and my family were in extreme need of money. I noticed I had an old violin I could try to sell. I got $200 for it. I could have told my family I got less for it and kept more of the money. In the end I gave $150 of it and only kept $50 with my mother’s knowledge about it. Everything from finding the place where to sell it to convincing the shopkeeper to buy it from me as she was looking for a bigger size violin to cashing the check she gave me as the bank teller was kind of suspecting of a “kid” cashing a check in that amount and the mental questioning I had about what to do with the money was one big challenge for me at the time as I was just 18 years old. We would not have been able to eat that week were not for the money I got from that violin.



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Mirabai Chrin

posted October 5, 2007 at 8:15 am


Arising well before dawn this morning I sat at my desk preparing to do my “morning pages” — an exercise in creativity that I attempt each morning, sometimes it doesn’t happen until the afternoon, and sometimes it takes all day to accomplish the task…but this very morning I seemed to be spot on, as the Bristish would say…
For over 12 years I lived in a spiritual community in the Berkshires. The inner guidance was clear that it was time for me to leave. Ouch! In following that still quiet voice, I moved on getting a job as a kitchen manager at a beautiful Jewish Retreat center in the Catskill Mountains. I have worked as a perapertic chef traveling around to run kitchens for retreats, workshops and seminars, usually of a spiritual nature, since the mid-70′s.
This past year has been a search for my next “YES!: and circumstance (i.e. cooking gigs) found me back at my old “Home” still unable to find a different “YES!” and feeling trapped there, held by own limitations and fears. In dismay and dispair I sat upon the kitchen steps looking out at the herb garden and wondering how to get out of “that deep hole in the sidewalk” ( This is a reference to the poem – “Autobiography is 5 Short Chapters” A car pulls up and parks across the way and two friends emerge – one who lives down the road a bit and the other a friend from where I live now. I was touched that she came right up to me to say hello and asked of me how I was. When I shared my current reality about feeling stuck and my search for a new home and the need to get settled in order to finish a long term project — the completion of a cookbook which I began in the last millenium – 1983, to be exact she offered to take me home with her.
I have been here since the middle of June, living with her and her husband. We all belong to the same Sufi Order. Initially I realized that before anything else I needed to mourn, to grieve the loss of my long time home. I come from immigrant stock — my parents coming to the United States in 1947 and my being born here in ’48. My father was a gypsy, literally, from the Carpathian Mountains. One of the tragedies of my own life is that I had been estranged from my birth family for decades now which has been a great source of pain.
It is through spiritual practice and seeking that has finally, and relatively recently brought me to the understanding/knowing that I belong here, that I am in absolutely the right place and at the right time. It was an epiphany when it happened in 2002. My birthday is the now infamous 9/11 and in wanting to celebrate in a most positive way I took a training in the “Warrior Monk Intensive” — it is a training that I had prepared meals for at least 7 times over a period of five years and it was to begin on my birthday – so I journeyed in Indianapolis Indiana to celebrate and open myself to a new experience which is when I had this unsolicited grace of feeling that I belonged…the consequences of that revelation is that slowly slowly, like the 10,000 petalled lotuc unfolding I began to see, to experience the benefits of committment, of being able to work through any challenges, to experience them as opportunities for change.
And of course one of the greatest opportunities and challenges is the human condition of forgetting. To quote a poem from Ram Das’ “BE HERE NOW” by Lenny Brown — I know that I know and that I don’t know, but I forget…and that’s the way it should be. At the end of every forget, I remember.
Just so you know, I am writing this extemporaneously, allowing to let the words flow out of me as though they are being written not necessarily by another, yet, merely as an expression of my own truth. I am not sure if it is motivated by the possiblity of getting to see the Dalai Lama or just a condition of the openness of life I am experiencing in this moment. In truth, writing an essay to win “a contest” is not something that I have ever attempted before…too risky…walking too close to the edge of the abyss.
I stop and take a deep breath. This outpouring I realize is more for my benefit in this moment — to give some expression to my NOW experience of opening to life; to be wonderfully excited about the possiblites that are all around.
Anyway, back to my story of KINDNESS. Last night at a class the subject, the teaching was on Friendship…the words of Inayat Khan were shared and discussed with people in the circle sharing authentically about their take on what it is, how difficult it can be to feel and know friendship…it was a wonderful sharing and in waking up this morning I shared in a note to my new family how graced and blessed I felt by their gift of home — a place where I felt i belonged and how that sense of belonging is what would allow me to find completion in my project and that I also now see that this gift of home, this knowing is what allows my fingers to dance on this keyboard sharing with others who I have never met — that act of kindness of taking me from a place I no longer belonged to a place of belonging, to my new home. Once again I pause in writing to really take it in — this most splendid reality.
And that’s all she wrote.
Thank you for your kind attention and for the opportunity to share my self in some ways not knowing who or why just following a desire which holds a divine impulse. and now I send it out into cyberspace.
Blessings and deep sweet peace,
Mirabai



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Mary Lou Gardner

posted October 5, 2007 at 8:31 am


I have survived a huge upset of my life that threatened to make me a resident of my car trunk. Liver disesase has prevented me from working ad fulfilling the use of the gift God gave me, I am a Registered Nurse. Disability equaled a 2/3 cut in my monthly income and the cost required to live well is not available. Since this trial, many have helped me to maintain some of my humanity. My church has provided me with a dependable car and also the person who has taken me to her heart and offers help whenever I need it. A friend of my Mother, who ha gone to her reward with Jesus, has adopted me to her life and for all of the people who have helped me I thank God for putting them in my path. But most especially for Alma,who’s generous and unselfish heart makes the continuation of my life possible.



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Virginia M Greeley

posted October 5, 2007 at 8:37 am


What a wonderful opportunity Beliefnet has given us! Thank you for encouraging me to spend some time thinking about all the amazing acts of kindness I have been fortunate to see and experience! This exercise has given me the chance to realize how just one simple act of kindness can effect a life many years later.
How fortunate am I to be in this predicament…which act of kindness has been the most profound?
It could it be the night I was working and met a mother of a boy my oldest son used to play with before we moved out of town. I hadn’t seen her in 14 years. We had a few minutes to catch up and she thanked me for watching her son each school morning while she was attending nursing school. I never realized how much that meant to her. Her son was no problem at all, he and my David just watched TV until it was time for them to walk to school. I hadn’t done anything, but she showed me that evening that often times it is the little things we do that make the biggest difference to others. That night I learned that every contact we have with another has lasting influence.
Or could the most profound act of kindness be the help I received from another of my son’s friend’s moms? When my sister died, fairly quickly and unexpectedly from breast cancer, there was so much to do. I had two little babies under two years old, along with a teenager who was griefing himself and refused to help me organize and clean our home for funeral reception. As soon as Debbie heard about my sister, she came over with a wonderful meal and offered to help me get the house organized. We worked together and when the kids needed me, she worked alone. Debbie taught me the power of quiet strength, that sometimes it isn’t always what is said, but the comfort that is quietly shared in silence.
Or could it be the amazing woman who seemed to have chosen me out of many at a coffee shop. We were waiting in line and she was looking at me like she was trying to figure me out. I smiled at her. When it was my turn to pay for my order, the counter staff told me that the woman had already paid for me. As I turned to thank her, she put a shiny penny into the palm of my hand, closed my fingers over the penny and held on. She told me that everything was going to be all right, that my angel is always with me, and to remember that she has silver hair and wears a light blue dress. What a wonderful gift!



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Karen

posted October 5, 2007 at 9:30 am


One Friday afternoon while working in my office in a big building in Midtown Atlanta, I heard a crash happen on the busy intersection that my window overlooks. I looked out my window to see an SUV and a car that had collided sitting in the middle of the intersection. The driver and passengers of the car had exited the vehicle and were walking toward the sidewalk. The persons in the SUV seemed stunned and did not move from their vehicle.
A passerby noticed smoke coming from the SUV and began waving to the persons inside to exit the vehicle. They did not move. He ran out into the intersection and began yelling at the passengers to get out. They stayed put. Finally, he opened the driver’s door, pulled her out of the car, hopped in and drove the car to a safe place out of the intersection. No sooner did he exit the SUV than the smoke turned into flames. It wasn’t long before I could hear small explosions erupting from the vehicle as the flames began to engulf the front.
Without a moments hesitation, the passerby ran back to the other vehicle and drove it up the street a ways to a safe place out of traffic. He returned to the scene of the accident and proceeded to check in with both parties.
Emergency crews arrived quickly on the scene and extinguished the fire. The passerby greeted the emergency personnel and, though I couldn’t hear his voice, seemed to be offering to help in anyway he could. He never left the scene, but walked back and forth between the two parties and the emergency workers.
A tow truck soon arrived. True to form, the passerby greeted the tow truck driver and even helped him rig the towing equipment to the burned vehicle. While the truck prepared to pull away with the wreckage, I noticed the passerby out in the intersection picking up the larger pieces of debris from the wreck.
I glanced away for a few minutes, but when I returned to my vigil, the tow truck had gone and the last police officer was pulling away. Everyone was gone, except the passerby. He reappeared on the scene with a dust pan and a broom and swept up the remaining debris before waving the traffic to continue on as normal.



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Yogachic

posted October 5, 2007 at 9:51 am


“What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?”
The most profound act of kindness I have witnessed and received is the act of a one suffering alcoholic taken by the hand of another recovering alcoholic and little by little, day by day… a little ray of hope light flickers in their eyes. You watch suffering shift as it has been eased a bit, you watch as God does for them what they could not do themselves ….
Profound…



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Melanie Templeton

posted October 5, 2007 at 9:58 am


Once when I was young i had been in an abusive relationship and found myself crying, alone, outside at night… a stranger appeared from nowhere and asked if I was ok and comforted me.



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windyblue

posted October 5, 2007 at 10:12 am


Win a ticket to see the Dalai Lama? Your kidding? this man is buddhist. And does not believe at all in GOD. To him there is not God.
SEE wikipedia, encyclopedia on Buddhism, there is to much for me to type on it. Also they believe not in a heaven or hell, they believe it just an attitude of mind.
See justbegood.net.
The ten commendmants state Thou shalt have no other God before me.
Thou shalt not worship idols.
This man leads people in the wrong direction, A feel good religion?
I got some News for this Dalai Lama, he and his followers are going to hell when they die. And when he dies, well Wait until he see’s the face of GOD! For God will not becoming to him as his friend and Lord, with open arms when he dies, This man will see the fire’s of hell.
And the white throne of judgement. For the Lord says. you must be born again in order to see the kingdom of God.
This man cannot save anyone, nor can he heal anyone, his statue for sure cannot either.
Good deeds will not get a person into heaven, For we are saved by the blood of Christ and what he did on the cross.
So, anyone who wants tickets to see the Dalai Lama Go, but he is leading everyone straight to Hell.
Read the bible.



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Corie

posted October 5, 2007 at 10:23 am


i thikn the most heroic thing I have witnessed would be my dad always bringing home the homeless. Giving them a place to stay and food. Just as Jesus preached.



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Kendra Jory

posted October 5, 2007 at 10:50 am


The most profoundly amazing event(s) happened during the 1997 Red River flood. My parents’ home was threatened by the water and so they had to build a huge dyke all along their property as they lived on the banks of the Red River. The water rose so quickly and when I looked out of their upstairs window it literally made me sick to my stomach that they could lose everything within minutes.
We all worked as hard as possible throwing sandbag after sandbag. Still the water was rising. Everyone was so upset.
What turned everything around was the day when the volunteers came. They came from all parts of the city, and province. Even the army came! What was especially touching was the Mennonite Community. They came out in full force! For a community that is usually so close knit and separate from our own society, the Mennonite community really opened their hearts and minds. They were compassion and kindness in action.



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Melissa Whitely

posted October 5, 2007 at 10:52 am


It may sound silly but the most profound act of kidness I’ve witnessed is someone asking me “How are you doing?”. And when I responded with the societially conditioned “Fine, how are you?”, not even making eye contact, he touched my shoulder softly and asked again “How are you doing?”. It brought tears to my eyes.
The reason I found it so profound is because of the simplicity of the act. This man took five minutes out of his busy day and was actually interested in hearing about MY mental state. It still gives me chills when I think about it.



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Denise J Firth

posted October 5, 2007 at 11:16 am


My adopted son’s biological mother gave me the gift of Motherhood. Life does not get much better than that. What a wonderful, strong and loving person you have to be in an adoption situation. I have a blessed life.
Thanks



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MOHAN AIDASANI

posted October 5, 2007 at 11:22 am


Hello Gentlemen:
Please excuse me for my comments:
I understand that WORLD has one Lord
Had someone met God, would not have kept expensive tickets for his
discourses.
We were born non-possession and die same way
why to have possessions when you do not know anything about
the next moment.
Whole world is ECHO all your actions will have re-action on you.
Whatever you may do may be Wirhgt or Wrong
But God does PERFECT ONLY.
Release yourself from doership.
Please forgive me.



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Renee O'Connell

posted October 5, 2007 at 11:35 am


I work as a music practitioner at a hospital playing therapeutic music for patients. During my three years there, I have seen some very amazing kind things happen. Here’s one snapshot that stands out to me. A man I played for had been hospitalized for over 8 months in a coma. Each day I came to play for him, his wife and sister were by his side. As they told me they lived far away, I know they either slept in the car (no money to get a hotel) or drove back and forth over 100 miles each day to be with him. They never read or watched TV or “entertained” themselves as far as I could tell, they just sat in his room with him just to be there with him. When Christmas time arrived that year, when I came to his room, I saw they had decorated the room very festively with holiday ribbons and banners. On a table they made a little alter with a fake Christmas tree that was decorated with beautiful ornaments. I was so blown away by this display of beauty they made–esp. for a man who was not conscious and could not even see the beauty they created in his room for him. When I remarked on how lovely the room looked, the patient’s wife got up and picked up a Santa Claus doll they had. She showed me how when you pull a chord in the back, how it could talk. I didn’t even hear what the Santa doll said because at this point, my eyes filled with tears and I was just overwhelmed with how kind that was of them to go so far out of their way to make the room festive and beautiful for their loved one who lay in a coma, unaware of what they had done. Also I knew they didn’t much money for such extravagance but they went out on the limb for him. It was such a simple thing but it struck me as so kind. When they showed me the Santa Claus doll, that was the only time I cried in front of the families of patients.



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dakarai raizel

posted October 5, 2007 at 12:43 pm


The most profound act of kindness ever received by me happened as a child and reminds me as an adult how I should live.
A neighbor girl, my friend, lived in very poor circumstances due to a father that drank and a mother who was always pregnant with another of the many children he created.
One day, she offered to me a slice of bread, with some lard and a very precious commodity, rarely seen in her house…sugar. It was all she had, yet she offered it to me with a smile.
I have never tasted anything better since.



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Kelly McGovern

posted October 5, 2007 at 1:25 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have witness is the rescue of the dog, that I have received as a result of this act of kindness. She was to be euthanized due to an eye injury, however an angel on earth saw hope for this dog, and rescued her. Today this dog is my very best friend, she is a source of constant joy, happiness and gratitude for life in all forms, I can’t imagine her not being on this earth or in my life.



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Lexia Collier

posted October 5, 2007 at 1:32 pm


I believe I deserve a trip to NYC so I may show him the proof I have that I have been gifted with the gift to see orbs with my naked eye. I have a dvd taken at my home in the Ozarks that proves that I am a very gifted vedic shaman. My property also seems to be a haven for faries and 7th dimensional beings that are now being recognized by scientists. There is a conference in Palm Springs, Ca at the end of oct where this is being discussed.I’m experiencing a lot of phemonon.A gift I need to share with the world but through the most important man.
The Ozarks line up through their ley lines with the Himalayans.I’m a retired Gifted/Talented teacher and musician and artist. Presently my life is devoted to healing.
Namaste,
Lexia



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CARMELITA MALDONADO

posted October 5, 2007 at 1:36 pm


I don’t know if it’s the kindest,but it is one that stands out in my memorey. I live in Los Angeles and was in Little Tokyo which is in Downtown LA. A freiend along with her 1 yr old son and I were walking around I must have been about 17 yrs old my friend was 19 at the time (1987).
As we were window shopping on the busy street we all of sudden hear moaning and screaming. I look around to find this tiny, elderly Japanese lady grabbing her head and speaking in what I assume was Japanese looking around at peopoe walking by her asking for help and mind there were Japanese people walking by her I know not everyone walking around Little Tokyo is Japanese but a lot were. No one stopped to help her they looked at her and speeded up to pass her. I was in a bit of disbelief as I saw her trying to get someones attention she trid to reach out for this yound Japanese mans arm and he pulled away. I looked at my friend and said let’s go to her. Her reply was “how embarrasing”.
I could have slapped her, but I didn’t and I went up to the elderly woman I couldn’t understand her except the words “my head” she was at this point in tears leaning on the wall groaning. I somehow managed to have her point where she lived which was only 2 blocks away at a senior living center adjacent to Little Tokyo. I put my around her and took her slowly by the forarm and walked her home with my friend and her baby walking a few feet behind us. As we approached her home her friends were sitting on the porch and were startled to see this Mexican girl hugging and bringging there friend home. One the ladies spoke English and so I explained she was in pain and her head was hurting. She told me that she’s not suppose to leave the building alone and that she hadn’t taken her meds. Well we were leaving and the elderly women yelled out and her hand streched out I saw it was money and said no you don’t have to pay me. Her friend was like it’s only two dollars take it she won’t take no for an answer that is her way of thanking you. It’s been 20 years and it still makes my eyes want to water at how people can just have no compassion it was an eye opener how you can find friends in strangers and strangers within your friends.
Carmelita Maldonado



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Deborah Barber

posted October 5, 2007 at 1:44 pm


The last summer I had with my mother as she was dying from lung cancer, we were on the way to her doctor appointment and I stopped at a store to pick up some medicine for her and as she could not walk distances and did not feel well, she opted to stay in the air-conditioned car.
While I was inside she began to feel worse and in her confusion she got out of the car and locked the doors as the car was running.
When I got back outside she was distraught and in tears. I called the local police to ask for help getting back into the vehicle but was refused, even though my mother was quickly getting more and more ill.
I was beginnning to panic in the heat and with Mom’s condition. A car finally pulled up beside us and the lady driving asked if she could help us. I begged her to take my mother to her doctor’s office and leave me behind to deal with the running vehicle.
I didn’t know this woman and though I was scared to death I bundled my mother in the car with this stranger; entrusting her with the most important woman in my life. She promised she’d take good care of her.
By the time I was able to get into the car and get to the doctor to check on my mother, I found they’d called an ambulance to transfer her immediately to the hospital.
This wonderful angel had gotten my mother to the doctor just in time.
I’m sure we’d have lost her that day if that special little lady hadn’t come along when she did and taken care of Mom.
Although to my heartbreak we did lose Mom in just a couple more months, I had a few more precious days with my beloved mother thanks to the kindness of that special lady.



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Kimberly

posted October 5, 2007 at 2:00 pm


The most profund act of kindness that I have ever encountered is becoming awakened and lifted. This is kind not only to my soul, but to the people around me, they all recieve this gift whether they know it or not.



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Theresa Leggio

posted October 5, 2007 at 2:33 pm


When I was 16 years old, I lived with my best friend and her family.
I worked in a supermarket in the shopping center across the street from our house. I remember it was the day before Thanksgiving, and the entire store was busy. When I took my break I desided to go outside for some fresh air. I was standing in front of the store, and in the parkinglot was a local woman who we had often seen walking the streets around our town. She was tattered and old beyond her years. I knew that we had passed her by so many times in our liesure drives, and often, as I tend to do in my own mind, I wondered ‘Why?’.
I was sure she wasn’t homeless, as there was a motel on the highway that put up folks with mental illnesses. It had always been so sad to me to see people suffering. When you see people suffering beyond thier own recognition, beyond thier own control. That thing we all seem to have in life. Control.
The woman was asking people for spare change. I watched thier faces as they cringed with disgust, holding thier childs hand ever so tightly.
I almost cried. Without second thought, I approached her. Her head slightly down as to not look to close, her hand raised half extended with her palm dirty and open just enough for a little charity.
“Would you like to get something to eat?” I asked her.
“Yes.” She replied.
We walked silently to the pizza place. I went up to the counter to order a couple of slices. She walked straight into the bathroom. I had the pizza on the table, and paid for our meal by the time she came out. She walked right outside. I didnt understand. I thought perhaps she forgot that I was there or she just didnt want to stay in there? So I went outside and asked her to come sit with me. As we were eating there was a mother with her 3 young children sitting next to us. The youngest of the children was a baby, maybe 4 months old. The baby had started to cry, and the mother was trying to hurry her other 2 children along. The woman was getting upset that the baby was cryiing and kept repeating that the baby was hungry and needed to be fed. I could tell she wanted to pick the baby up and just coddle and sing the tears away. The mother was visible uneasy at her intrest. She got her children together and left the pizza parlor.
The woman kept talking about the baby was just hungry, you need to feed the baby.
We finished our pizza with not much more conversation, and walked out. I told her I had to get back to work. She walked with me. After a few moments, she asked me what I was doing for Thanksgiving. I told her I was planning on going to my mothers for dinner. She started to tell me that she had a daughter too, and a grandchild. She told me that she doesn’t see her daughter anymore, her daughter won’t talk to her anymore, and she isn’t allowed to see her grandchild. She was so saddened by this, I could see the tears welling up in her eyes. She put her hands on my shoulders and looked deep into my eyes. She said “Your mother is a lucky woman to have a daughter like you.” She hugged me with a “God Bless You!” and walked away.
I returned to work, and finished my day.
Later that night I sat and thought about what she had said, and I understood her pain. I understood, even at my youthful age, that the pain of a mother not being with her family, not having been able to be of sound mind, her own mind. Not stable enough to have walked through this world without loosing respect of those you love and hold so dearly. To loose all and everything to an addiction caused by a mental affliction, never to regain ones true self. A mother without her child. Not by death, but by the separation that is the result of a culture that turns a blind eye and judges with both eyes wide open. I was eerily reminded of my own childhood, the absence of my mother. The alcholic rages. The fights with my father. The words he would say about my mother. How I had to tell my mom that I didnt love her, just to make him proud.
The next day, I went to my mothers house for Thanksgiving dinner.
My mother was her normal complaining self, so instead of getting annoyed with her, I helped while everyone else sat around. (Which was why she always complained!!) She calmed down, and we enjoyed the day.
As the years went by I took extra intrest in understanding why my mother had been as she was when I was a child. She had a mental affliction, from her own childhood tramas. It got worse over time, and instead of therapy, she turned to alcohol and promiscuarity outside of her marriage. My siblings and I would tell you we suffered a great deal as children. At least now I understand. I have taken precautions in my own life as a mother to not do as was done to me. I have been far from perfect, but am constanly aware of the mental afflictions we all can suffer.
So to sum this up, and sorry for getting on the way I did.
Where was the act of kindness and who did perform it?? I couldn’t possibly know if that woman would remember me for any givin amount of time, but I have carried her in my heart since. She gave me something without even realizing it. She gave me that great understanding. The one that God has been trying to give us since the dawn of time.
Thank you for reading..
God Bless!!



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A Volunteer

posted October 5, 2007 at 3:17 pm


Some acts of kindness are anecdotal — one time occurrences that cause us each to take notice and cite the account to others for years to come. Others are more sustained and prolonged; occurring with such regularity that we fail to notice the act or the actors. That is the case with the folks I associate with — emergency responders, especially those of us who are volunteers.
Each day I witness my fellow volunteer firefighters and EMT’s in eastern Colorado practice His Holiness’ religion. It matters not whether they are Buddhist, or are evangelical Christians, Jews, Muslims, or even if they are atheists. All my brother and sister firefighters and EMTs practice the religion of kindness, regardless of their faith tradition. Each day and every evening, whenever a friend, neighbor or stranger calls 911, they respond — in emergency equipment, in personal vehicles, on foot — prepared, if need be, to sacrifice their health, even their life, in service of our community. They exemplify the ideal of the Bodhisattva, that Buddhist saintly being that foregoes his or her personal escape from this cycle of suffering, in order to lead others to Enlightenment and peace.
Can I cite a single act of kindness, not really. What would be the measure? Comforting the family of an elder that has passed; rescuing a child from the horror of a fiery fate; pushing a stalled car from an intersection; recovering stranded motorist during a winter storm; doing CPR; teaching fire safety – all done without compensation or expectation of recognition.
Kindness is not an act, it is a behavior; it is a practice. My submission is on behalf of those practitioners.



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Rosary Selensky

posted October 5, 2007 at 3:23 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have experienced was 2 years ago when my first grandson was born. As we all anticipated the arrival of Matthew with such excitement, the deepest desire of both my daughter-in-law’s mother, Cathy, and I was that we would be present while he was being brought into the world. It was something we both wanted at the deepest maternal level, and the Doctor had agreed.
Cathy and I had previously had minor disagreements surrounding the wedding, and other trivial things, so we had a tense, but cordial relationship.
When Jessyca went into labor, Cathy and I were there along with my son through 17 long hours all through the night, giving her encouragement, and sharing in their excitement.
Right before it was time for Jessyca to start pushing, some complications developed, and the Doctor said that my son could stay in the room, and so could one of the grandmas, but that one of us would have to leave.
I told Cathy that she should be there for her daughter, because Jess is her only child, and she is her mother. I left the room, feeling confident that I had done the right thing, but very dissappointed. 5 minutes later, Cathy came out and told me she felt that it was only right that we switch off every 5 minutes, since Matthew was my grandchild too.
I know how hard a decision that must have been for her, yet she selflessly offered to share an experience that meant so much to her, and to sacrifice that time with her daughter. I thanked her profusely, yet refused her offer, because I felt it was only right that she be with her daughter as she gave birth.
Since that time, I have never forgotten the kindness and selflessness Cathy showed me, at such an important time in our lives. Needless to say, she taught many lessons in that one profound act. We have remained close ever since, and as a postscript, several months ago, we both witnessed the birth of our new granddaughter.



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John Campbell

posted October 5, 2007 at 3:37 pm


When I was 17 (back in 1977), I was riding my motorcycle home when I hit a ditch (the city’t fault-it was in Los Angeles at the time) in the road, and flew over the handlebars. Not wearing a helmet, I banged my head badly (it led later to epilepsy- grand mal seizures) broke my right collarbone, and cracked the same side shoulder blade.
Slowly staggering around, very confused; a man driving a (I think it was either a stingray or corvette) covertible pulled up in front of me, he asked how I was and did I want a ride to the hospital?
Realizing the value and compassion of his offer I merely nodded and climbed in. I little remember the ride there. But I do remember pulling up in front of the emergency entrance.
He asked if I needed help. I eeked out a no, and I think I said thank you and wandered in. I don’t remember what the driver did but the hospital staff went to work on me quickly (I was there for three days and couple years later won a courtcase against the city- I used it to travel the beauty of Europe), I ended up staying in a room, of course my family came every day and later took me home.
But my point is this: a person sees another person have a bad accident, and quickly comes to this person’s aid. I never saw this man again or ever heard anything again. At this moment I would just like to say thank you and spread the news out about this sort of wonderful human behaviour.



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Mariann

posted October 5, 2007 at 5:23 pm


I was in a pizza parlor during a festival. There was a child crying because his mother didnt have money for him to win a fish at the feast. The child sadly looking down at his pizza continued to shed tears. It seemed that the family were poor. The owner of the pizzeria walked over to the child and handed the child ten dollars. With also the permission of his mother and told him to enjoy the festival and to spend it wisley. The gentlemen was a very warmed hearted young man. I hope one day this man will be blessed with great things such as love, health and a family. Seeing the child with such happiness filled the young gentlemans night. This young gentleman is my brother. And to let you know that my brother is working very hard to pay for his rent and to survive. Money doesnt mean much to him but seeing others happy is worth more for my brother.



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Mariann

posted October 5, 2007 at 5:25 pm


i put in my wrong email address



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jumbojava

posted October 5, 2007 at 9:06 pm


“What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?”
‘Profound’ seems to mean that some acts of kindness are better than others. I rather think they’re all profound. ;)
For one act of kindness I personally recieved (which I wrote about on Bnet) that I am to this day still very touched by happened a few summers back. I am the primary caregiver to my parents. Dad had passed with the result being losing half our income. Just a few months later Mom began going through cancer treatments, radiation and then chemo. During that time, we were scrapping pennies, trying to make ends meet, going back and forth to treatments 45 mins one way, five days a week with a car that was litterally falling apart. I had lost the brakes once, the muffler fell off, door fell off, engine kept overheating, no AC in the hot summer heat. Each repair ate what little cash I had mange to scrounge. Keeping the bills paid and the car running, profiding food and medication was a constant struggle. Finally, feeling overwhelmed and hopeless, one day on Bnet, I just asked for prayers and help.
Someone through a mutual fellow Bnet poster began sending Mom and I money every two weeks for over three months. I was astounded, humbled, and greatly apreicative everytime I recieved an email telling me another check was on the way. I cried each time, feeling both blessed and humbled by such kindness, knowing that this unknown angel knew there was no way I could ever pay this back. These gifts was what kept Mom and I going for several months until we could turn that curve and get back on our feet. When this unknown angel finally sent the last check the tally was over $3000.
To this day I dont know who that fellow poster was, but Mom and I are still very gratefull and humbled. :)
Thank you!!!!
~jj



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Melanie Brown

posted October 5, 2007 at 10:34 pm


This may sound strange…almost like something I should’ve always known, but I didn’t. Just recently my 12 year old daughter and I won a trip to Florida. I had all these things on my agenda that I wanted to do and see. These were all good things things that I wanted to do, meditating on the beach, go to an out of town 12 Step meeting, etc.. But the bottom line was, these were all things that I wanted to do. I thought I’d earned this break and that I needed to do these things in order to enhance my emotional and spiritual state. Once I got there I was a little disappointed because my daughter didn’t seem to be having as much fun as I thought she would have. We’ve never been able to afford to travel much so this was a really big deal to us. The things I wanted to do and the things she wanted to do were obviously different. For the first time in my life I had more fun and more joy setting my things aside to see her happy. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve often done things for others and I may pretend that it’s what I wanted to really do. But inside there was a little part of me that always felt cheated. Like I was sacrificing something. I did these good deeds because I knew that’s what good people were supposed to do, and I always felt guilty that I was not feeling the joy I thought a selfless person was supposed to feel. For the first time in my life making someone else happy when it went against my agenda brought me a simple peace and contentment that I’d never known. I was finally understanding what people meant when they said “Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less.” I told an older wiser friend of mine about my feelings on that trip, and he just looked at me smiled and “That’s what we call growth kiddo.” It may not seem like much to most people, but I feel that’s the truest act of kindness I have ever been apart of. It was certainly the most gratifying.
Namaste’.



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Samantha Rottscheit

posted October 5, 2007 at 10:59 pm


For years my father and I have not gotten along. He turned to alcohol and I suffered from mental illness. I held so much hatred in my heart towards him, hoping that he would die and get out of my life forever. Recently I’ve been taking a class at school that is similar to psychology, but focuses on relationships only. Ever since, it has been making me question my way of handling the situation. I’ve always known anger is unhealthy, but I’ve never knwon any other way to handle my feelings. We had to write a paper on the strongest person we know; a person who possesses a great deal of personal power (knowledge, courage, happiness, and sensitivity to name a few traits). I couldn’t think of anyone except for him and I told myself that I would NEVER write about him. But I had no choice. I care too much about my grades. While writing this paper I learned more about how I feel about my dad. Instead of my thoughts and emotions being jumbled in my mind they were before me on paper, neat and orderly. I cried as I wrote because every word was true whether I wanted to admit it or not. I analyzed his character in ways I never thought possible. I saw my dad again through my paper, through this truth that had been inside me all along. Before I handed in my paper I gave him a copy to read. I ended the paper by saying that above all he is my dad, no matter what. I am slowly learning to accept him for who he is and not what he has done (that doesn’t define him as a person, only as a person who makes mistakes, which everyone does). It is not easy to abandon all my frustration but the more I let go of the anger the better I feel inside, and about my father. He is no longer a person whom I have to deal with everday, and I am learning to appreciate what he is doing now. I have never given him credit for trying to make things better until now. I’ve never wanted so badly to release this hostility until now. I thank my teacher for assigning the paper because it began a healing process I never thought possible. I thank my dad for being…my dad. No more and no less. He is becoming an important figure in my life again and though we might not be best friends the way we were when I was a child, I can still be daddy’s little girl again. It hurts, and I’m sure it always will. But time can heal all pain. So can this newfound compassion I’m seeing in myself, as well as in my dad. He is trying, just as I am. We’re only human. All we can do is make mistakes, but we can also learn. That is how we learn. And now I know what it feels like once again to be a daughter, to have a dad who cares (I see it now!), and to be loved. Anger is a form of sadness. I can’t be sad forever. When we talk, I am sincere. When he takes me to school, I enjoy being in his company. When he is gone, I miss him. We’re learning together how to be kinder towards each other, as well as other people. We’re learning how to be a family again.



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Lesly Gioia

posted October 5, 2007 at 11:35 pm


I remember about 25 years ago, when my husband and I first moved into our new home, a few of our neighbors came over and welcomed us to the neighborhood. They brought cake, cookies, and good wishes.
We were so touched that strangers would take the time to share a bit of kindness that we have kept up that tradition within the neighborhood.
Just to stop by, introduce ourselves and bring a homemade goodie to the new people on the block to help them feel as welcome as we did.
Friendships are started and people are so appreciative. It seems alot of people today tend to keep to themselves within the neighborhood or are just too busy with their everyday life to really get involved in the neighborhood.
I believe one act of kindness brings peace to your own self and a sense of goodwill which, hopefully will multiply by others who will follow with their own act of kindness.



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Shannon McHone

posted October 6, 2007 at 8:01 am


When I was 17 my aunt was in a horse riding accident and went into a coma. My mother flew on an airplane to be with her sister and her family. While en route my mother learned that her sister had died.
Terribly destraught with grief, the woman next to her on the plane, whom she did not know, held her hand the whole way. My mother never
knew her name, but often told that story of how that kindness got her
threw one of the most painful moments of her life.



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Shannon McHone

posted October 6, 2007 at 8:16 am


I was just reading my entry above, when I realized that the kindest acts which I have been a part of are normal everyday moments of love, friendship and compassion. These are between my friends, my children, and even strangers whom I come in contact. My 10 year old son loves to open doors for people, and I see in his eyes how it feeds his soul when most people return his kindness with gratitude. I always let others ahead of me in the grocery line when I have a whole cart full and they have just a few items. I enjoy the look on their faces because where I live, people don’t normally think about others, in these simple ways. Kindness to me is a way of life and really is difficult to present in just one moment. If I were given tickets for this most awesome event, I have decided that I would give them to a friend of mine, who would be most elated at this rare gift, of being in the presence of such a spiritual and kind teacher.
Peace,
Shannon



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Sandra Stokes

posted October 6, 2007 at 2:48 pm


The most profound act of kindness I’ve both witnessed and received is the kindness I’ve learned to give myself.
Last year I was diagnosed with Graves Disease. It has rocked my world to the core of my Soul. My outward appearance has changed dramatically from bulging eyes, swollen throat, loss of hair and weight. I felt and feel so very bad at times; both physically and emotionally. However, I realize that Graves Disease didn’t come to hurt me but to tell me something. I can now think a little more positive because I know that their is an imbalance a lack of ease within me and because of this illness, I’m now paying more attention to myself. This act of kindness is a daily witnessing of my change from within and one I openly receive from myself. I’ve learned that life happens for us and works through us. So, I’ve begun to be still, meditate, listen and be kind to myself. I’m allowing the process of healing to do its job coupled with my kindness and acceptance of myself. If others stare at me (which happens everyday that I go out), I make sure I’m my own best friend, comforter and supporter. I’m kind to myself by reminding myself that I am a Soul having a human experience and that my true nature is: Love, Peace, happiness, goodness, KINDNESS, patience, understanding, self-control and all the fruits of the spirit. Therefore, things will get better and now is the time to be happy, not when I see the physical changes in my body. I’m grateful to be alive, I’m grateful for my self-suffiency, I’m grateful for Graves Disease because it has helped me want to learn more about myself and be kind to myself.



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yvonne myers

posted October 6, 2007 at 3:03 pm


My mother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2005 around christmas time. She survived for only 6 weeks after diagnosis. The day she died we had all of her friends and family come to visit, she was actually very alert. when someone would come in she would open her eyes and smile at them. She had at least 40 friends and family in and out. When nitetime rolled around she was constantly getting up and reaching up to the sky, my niece thought she wanted hugs but I knew she was reaching for the light.
She started to act out of control and we called my nieces aunt Penny to come over and help with the transition. Penny is a Reiki instructor.
As my mom struggled to find peace, we fell apart. Penny showed up and turned the lights down and played my mom’s favorite spanish music. when she started her reiki moves I was in awe of how my mom went from out of control, to calm and serene. Her and her partner stood over her and took her pain away and let her go.
This was the most amazing, unbelievable moment in my life. For being so scared for my mom to die, I felt so moved and so sure she had gone to a better place.
To me and my family this was the kindest act anyone could give someone. I will never forget how this woman made a sad and scary event a warm and miracle like experience for all of us.



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estelle

posted October 6, 2007 at 4:38 pm


On Christmas evening 1996, we were on our way home from my cousins house after Christmas dinner spent with loving family and friends.
I was pregnant with my youngest daughter and my two older daughters at the time were 9 and 4. They were sitting in the back seat of the car, the one buckled in her booster chair and the older one had taken off her seat belt with me not knowing, to lay down and sleep. The weather was terrible, the snow was coming down fast and thick. We entered the toll booth on the express way paid our toll, and slowly pulled into the expressway. The cars in front of us were swerving out of control, my husband trying to avoid the cars pressed on the breaks and went out of control also. Someone coming out of the toll booth at a higher rate of speed broadsided into the driver side of the car, we spun out of control and crashed into the highway divider. My husband was unconcious
my younger daughter was fine, my older daughter was just staring blindly ahead of her. My heart stopped thinking she may be dead. People stopped to help us. My husband was taken to the hospital seperately from us. I didn’t know what happened or where they were taking him. My daughter was in shock. I was hysterical and my younger daughter wasn’t anywhere near me. A family of middle eastern descent stopped in a white car to help us, when I realized that my younger child wasnt with us. In the chaos someone else had stopped and had picked up my daughter and walked off with her. I started to yell for my baby, and the people that stopped to help us ran to get her. They brought her to me safely and held our hands until another ambulance could come for us. In our moment of terror these kind people sat and prayed with me for my husband, for my children and for my unborn baby.
I thank God for them, I think about them often and wish I could see them again some day so that I could poperly thank them. If it werent for them I dont know where or what could have happened to my younger child. Or How I would have gotten through without their prayers. May God always protect them and watch over them. They were my guardian angels. We are all fine now,my husband had a concusion, broken ribs and a few stitches to his forehead, my older daughter was very lucky not to where her seat belt from what the insurance adjuster had told us, if she had worn her seat belt she may not be with us today. My middle daughter doesn’t remember anything and my little one is now ten years old, and named Christina Maria, for My Lord Jesus Christ and The Blessed Virgin. I will never forget that day or my Angels



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Teresa Keyes

posted October 6, 2007 at 9:08 pm


My ten-year-old son got off the school bus a few days ago and asked if we could talk. He explained that a classmate got on the bus that morning and appeared to be crying. My son said, “he doesn’t have many friends because he gets in trouble a lot and his family’s kinda messed up, but my heart hurt for him.”
I asked, “So what did you do?”
“I just got up and sat with him,” he answered. “I told him that he could talk with me if he wanted, or we didn’t need to talk at all. I just didn’t want him to feel alone.”
I am blessed to have someone in my life who intuitively acts with such compassion!



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deedee

posted October 6, 2007 at 11:05 pm


My little sister is the kindest person I know. When she was in 6th grade, she would come home upset almost everyday. My mom asked her what was wrong, and she told us that a boy named Billy was being picked on and bullied everyday. My mom said to her, if it bothers you so much, you have a voice you should say something. She said that she was afraid that if she stood up for him, that they would start picking on her too. My mom said, that if you think you are strong, and know what is right you should do it. She told her that if they so much as touched a hair on her head, that she had her parents to protect her and God was always on her side.She thought about it and didn’t say much until a few days later. No one liked Billy very much because he was what kids call a geek. He didn’t have many friends. One day it became to much for my sister to watch him cry on the bus, she is a shy and reserved girl. She does not like to draw attention to herself.
But on one particular day, the other kids were being more cruel than normal, calling him names, kicking his seat, poking at him. He was asking them to stop, they just got worse. The bus driver didn’t seem to care or she just wasn’t paying attention. My sister stood up, and looked at the bullies, said to them, if you don’t stop bothering him, I will have my mom call the school and tell them what you’re doing. How dare you pick on him, he hasn’t done anything to you. You should look at your pathetic faces in the mirror before you continue to bully Billy. They eased up for a while, they didn’t make fun of her, they would pick on him now and then, and when they did, she would just look at them with a disgusted look that shut them up. After this, Billy was her shadow, she wasn’t too happy because she didnt want him to think she had a crush on him. But she was ok. Our parents met Billy’s parents and our mom’s are now best friends. Billy has learned to stand up for himself. My sister is now 14 and as far as I’m concerned she is my hero. I love and respect her very much. She has a soft and loving heart and cannot stand for people to be victimized. My name is DeeDee and I am 19 years old. I wish that more kids respected others the way my sister does, and that more kids stood up to bullies that pick on other kids who are smaller and weaker than them.



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Kathleen Elkins, RN,MS

posted October 6, 2007 at 11:16 pm


I admire and totally exemplify Dali’s wisdom. I follow his teachings and try to enlighten others with Reiki and meditations of his culture.
Bless you for doing this for 20 fortunate souls.



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Terry Grahl

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:02 am


I hope my project and video will inspire others to step out of your own shoes into someone elses.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SX1hD5gQYGc The Pursuit of Hope
Terry Grahl believes in divine intervention.
In the past six months, she’s worked with close to 100 angels.
Earlier this year, the 39 year old interior decorator and owner of Terry’s Enchanted Cottage in Taylor, Mi. was asked by a friend to help women battling homelessness and abuse.
Grahl made a visit to their shelter in Pontiac and left inspired.
“I walked into a bedroom, which the women share,” she said. “It was as if the room was screaming out, ‘Save me!’ I knew I had found my calling — a passion and purpose.
“The used nursing-home bedspreads could not comfort them on days when they just didn’t want to go on. Stained towels, sheets, mattresses and pillows reminded me of how their souls must feel.
“David Iafrates, the owner of International Bancard Corp., heard about my work as an interior decorator and contacted me about the shelter.”
Admittedly, Grahl is not “an ordinary interior designer.” She said she decorates dreams. Through Terry’s Enchanted Cottage, which she started in November 2005, she helps people design their homes in the style of bygone eras.
She credits her creative inspiration to her mother, Lesley Skog of Taylor, and her brother, Todd Skog of Royal Oak.
“I believe cozy surroundings not only inspire, but help us thrive,” Grahl said. “When I left (the shelter) that cold, wintry day, I was determined and inspired to help 50 battered women who live at the shelter with their children.”
Grahl said most residents are in a yearlong program, recovering from drug dependency and abuse.
With the help of her sister and assistant, Tracy Garrett of Taylor, the two volunteered to perform a massive makeover.
They dubbed the project “Hopeful Haven.”
Grahl, who said before this project she used to be shy, contacted professional painters, artists and area businesses, and raised close to $200,000 in donations, furniture and equipment to revamp the dilapidated living quarters.
“I sent out e-mails and letters and made phone calls to people I thought would help,” she said.
Grahl admits she heard the word “no” more than once, but that didn’t deter her.
In March, several businesses sponsored a fund-raiser, donating 100 percent of the proceeds to the project.
Participants included Pure NV Salon and Spa in Taylor, along with 12 Curves for Women locations, including Brownstown and Huron townships, Trenton and Woodhaven.
Grahl’s brother, the owner of Todd’s Room in Birmingham, offered brow shaping for $25.
One time while visiting the shelter, one of the residents referred to Grahl as an “angel,” but the modest mother of four said the real angels are the contributors who helped make the makeover a success.
On June 18, the women’s bedroom at Grace Centers of Hope received a garden-style transformation.Grahl believes gardening satisfies cravings for fresh air and sunshine.
“Gardening soothes our souls and replenishes our spirits,” she said. “When we garden, we learn to appreciate the rhythms of the seasons and the patience to wait for spring flowers to bloom, for summer vegetables to ripen on their vines.”
A long list of the “angels” who made a difference is posted on her Web site, http://www.terrysenchantedcottage.com
“I call them angels because I believe God sent them,” she said. “Ninety angels from all over the world, including Australia, donated to this makeover. A very, very large furniture store in Michigan that wants to remain anonymous donated all the bunk beds, baby cribs and carpet.”
A professional painting company donated its services to paint the women’s bedroom and stairway, she said, and Masco Corp. donated all the paint.
“Color has the power of bringing inspiration and daydreams to life. MCM Management Corp. donated all the material to revamp the women’s bathroom. The total cost was $7,000.”
Bondy’s Ceiling Fans & Lighting in Southgate donated ceiling fans and lighting.
Grahl said she was determined to create a bedroom that would enable the women to awakento a room that would remind them every day: “I am precious. I am worthy. I am not a victim. I have the power to stop the torch of abuse and addictions from being passed on to my children.”
She crafted a homemade sign for above the women’s front bedroom door. It reads: “Hopeful Haven.”
“This sign represents a brand new chapter in the women’s lives and the spirit of the room,” Grahl said.
But beyond the new color, carpet, bedspreads, new beds and the new lighting, Grahl believes the most touching thing found in the room are photographs of the women who currently live at the shelter.
“They were placed on the wall so that all the future women who find their way to safety will know there is hope,” she said.
The artist admits she even learned a little bit about herself in the transformation.
“I believe in myself more,” Grahl said. “I didn’t realize how much strength I have. I have always been shy, but even a raindrop can make a ripple effect.
“I want everyone to know that all it takes is one person to say, ‘I want to make a difference.’



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Joanne Mingione

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:11 am


I have witnessed my mother take care of her schizophrenic sister for 50 years. She never abandoned her, and always cared for her tenderly and compassionately. Now my mother is old and fraile, and she STILL is caring for her sister. It brings tears to my eyes watching this extraordinary devotion.



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Sarah King

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:24 am


The love my late dog gave to me was the most profound act of kindness I’ve ever received. Schnapps (a huge Bernese Mountain Dog) was given to me as a gift by my spouse. He was my first dog, and after a lifetime of owning cats, I knew nothing about dogs. I learned–and loved–very quickly. Schnapps’ love for me tapped a nerve that lay deep, buried somewhere in my soul. I had no idea that nerve even existed, but Schnapps made it bloom and grow. At only age 1 1/2, he died of a sudden, severe stroke, and after months of mourning, I was able to place his ashes in the Satsa at our local temple. I feel his presence with me always. I have never experienced such–I know it sounds like a corny cliche–unconditional love. Our bond for each other was like a metaphor for life; if I could love others as much as I loved Schnapps–even when he made mistakes (chewed furniture, etc.) I know my life can be filled with light. I did get another dog…in fact, I got two! More love, more light.–Sarah King http://www.sbkproductions.com



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Linda Goodman

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:25 am


Sometimes the simpliest things have the most profound impact. When my daugher was about 10 years old she rode the bus with our lovely neighbor who is cognitively impaired. She is a wonderful girl full of hope, laugher, fun and kindness. One day on the bus children were making fun of her because she was different. Linnea, who is very quiet and reserved not liking to be noticed, stood up and told them not to pick on her friend. She had the courage to not think of herself but to think of someone else. The taunting stops and Linnea sat down quietly.
I have never been prouder. This was a lesson for me to always remember to stand up for what you believe. Even as adults there are bullies and it is tolerated.
I wish we could all accept our difference and appreciate each other.



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Richard Schooping

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:25 am


Our existence.



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Donna

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:25 am


This is a simple story, but at that very moment, it was the kindest thing a person could have done for me. I just had surgery and was lying on a stretcher in the recovery room. I felt so cold that I couldn’t stop shaking. Most of the busy staff walked by me, or gave me another blanket. Out of nowhere, a nurse placed two bags of IV fluid that she had warmed in hot water, under my blankets, on me. It was one of the most comforting, soothing, calming feelings I’ve ever had. She never said a word, and she walked away. I never saw her again, but I have never forgotten her, even 30 years later. She saw someone’s distress and provided comfort, without any expectations for herself, not even hearing a “thank you,” since I didn’t even have time to say it before she was gone. This was a pure act of kindness for which I am still grateful today.



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Pam Moyer

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:25 am


By far, the single most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed had to be when my now twenty year old daughter, Alicia, was in fifth grade. She was really constantly at odds with another girl in her class. Everyday brought a new conflict or a nasty comment on both their parts. It was really difficult. Then this young girl broke her ankle. She showed up to school on crutches and since it was a really small school there was no elevator. This made her getting around really difficult. Out of the other seven girls in the class, Alicia stayed behind everyday after school and helped her down every single step and carried all of her belongings. Alicia never told me or anyone else she did this. At a parent/teacher back to school night, her teacher told me this story with tears in her eyes. She had come back to the room and saw Alicia helping this young girl out. She found out Aicia had continued to help her for weeks. The teacher expressed she had never seen such a huge amount of kindness given in such a beautiful way. The amazing part is Alicia never shared what she did with me or anyone. Her kind heart remains inspiration.



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J.M.Leigh

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:28 am


Many years ago I was just starting out as apersonal trainer and needed a car to get to my client’s homes. I foolishly bought a used car based on a client’s recommendation without having the car checked. I had to borrow the money in order to buy the car. After less than a week of owning the car, it broke down. There was such extensive damage to the engine it was not worth repairing. I was forced to shut down my practice and work double shifts in NYC in order to cover my living expenses and pay off the loan. A wonderful friend took me to a dealership just to “look” at cars. That evening she purchased a new Honda for me. It took five years to pay her back. But I was able to re-establish my practice which I maintained for the next fifteen years. Her kindness motivated me to help others close to me knowing how important it is to give back. Hopefully the cycle will always continue.



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ana'

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:31 am


My mother is my inspiration and does acts of kindness every day. Having come to this country from portugal when I was 7 I will be 44 this Halloween.. She has raised six children . My dad passed away in Decmber and she continues to be my inspiration. She lives on a small stiped ans social security but she is the first to volunteer at food kitchens and helps the homeless even thoughshe does not have much herself. She walks to church every morning at 6:00 am in rai, sleet or snow and is content with herself. She is not materialistic and has made me become a STRONG women in raising two daughters as a single mom.
She is the epitomy of kindness and I am blessed to have her in my life.



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Martina Sanchez Muir

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:33 am


Just as the Dalai Lama will go down as one of the most compassionate people we have witnessed in our lifetime, so will two others.
I cannot help but think Of Pope John Paul and his compassion and forgiveness of the man who shot him for all the world to see.
Also the compassion of Mother Theresa with the dying and starving children was beyond compassion and behavior we would all like to imitate.
The world is lucky to have in our lifetime witnessed all three of these individuals work, speeches and acts. They lead by example and have no idea of their profound impact on the world we now live in.
May their energy, beliefs and forces that drove and still drive them continue like shining lights. We are richer for it. Thank you.



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dave zeller

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:34 am


Last year, I found myself unemployed. A friend of mine bought a gift card for my son for the holidays. I cant explain how that made me feel. I can say that it was totally unexpected, although it was not much, it didnt have to be. Simply the gift, the thought of someone helping another, was more than enough.



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Linda Lyberg

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:34 am


Thirteen years ago my husband committed suicide. His family, in their inability to see the situation clearly, blamed me for his death. This was a heavy burden for me to bear. Not only did I lose a husband, but I lost a family unit as well. I was in such a dark place and felt very alone.
One desperate night when my heart was overburdened, I did something I had not done since I was a child- I knelt down on my kness beside my bed and began to pray for God to lift the darkness from me. I cried until there were no more tears that night, and suddenly felt this overwhelming peaceful presence. I got up, climbed into my bed, and slept better than I had slept in quite a while.
However, my healing was slow in coming. I kept re-living everything- I was surrounded by memories everywhere I went. So,five months after his death I moved from my hometown of Houston, Texas to Philadelphia for a job promotion. I was all alone except for my two cats.
Every week or so without fail, my dearest friend in the whole world would send me a card. Sometimes, they were funny, sometimes reflectful,but always cherished. I looked forward to those cards- they made my day. It made a profound difference in my healing because I knew there was someone who loved me without judgment, someone who loved me unconditionally.
Now, I am returning her limitless act of kindness to someone in my life who recently lost their spouse due to cancer.I will continue this kindness as long as it takes for him to heal. It is such a small act that means so much.



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Willow Hale

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:35 am


When I was living in New York City, one morning while riding the #104 bus down Broadway, I saw two old homeless men in front of the McDonalds at 70th St. The bus stopped for a few minutes and I noticed one of the men was sitting while the other was shaving the sitting man’s face, using the old fashioned shaving lotion and razor! Then he combed the other’s hair and fixed his clothes. The one receiving this then with a smile on his face, got up and proceeded to do the same to his friend. I was close enough even in the bus to say good morning to them and one turned to me and said good morning back. Then the one receiving said, “we have to take care of each other…we can’t let ourselves go” and then he laughed. I have never forgotten this moment…that even in the circumstance of being homeless, they found it in themselves to share, care about themselves and each other, and find joy in the moment. They were living in a higher state of gentle spirit with each other. This taught me that kindness towards oneself and another is not based on money or even circumstance but truly based on the level of one’s spiritual life. Kindness comes from choice.



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B-Ann Swaney

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:35 am


I teach children with autism. Everyday I watch them grow and change. I am so blessed to have these children in my life. Students that have moved on and are in high school call me and I know that I have touched lives in a special way. But more important they have touched my life in a very special way. I have 2 aides and they are very special they are so kind to the children and understand they can’t always or don’t understand they take the time to do and explain.
I was led to these children by forces I can’t explain. I was a dancer ballet etc and one day a mother brought her child to me and asked if I could help. Well I started a journey of learning and being open to whatever may come my way. I hope I have done the best for these children.



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Cathy

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:35 am


My son is 21. When he was 18, he was diagnosed with HIV. I was speaking with him on the phone from work after his latest doctor appointment. He is doing well physically but has never dealt with the emotional devastation and anger I am sure is in him. I asked whether the doctor thought there was anything more he could be doing -I meant for him to stay as healthy as possible. He snapped at me and said that the doctor is not a counsellor, he is a physician who monitors just his physical condition. I backed off, said OK and thanked him for calling me.
The phone rang not 30 seconds later. It was my son. He said that he knew he should be getting some support and counselling. He said that he was working on that, but that he did not want to talk about it. He called me back because he thought he had hurt my feelings. I love him so much and told him so. What a kind and selfless person he is.



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Judy Krings

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:37 am


When I looked into the mirror, and I knew that I could change the world, by helping one person at a time, first of all myself.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for this opportunity.



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Jennifer

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:37 am


When I was attending college in Savannah, GA I often would talk to the homeless as I feel that they have a very different and interesting perspective on life. In particular I bonded with a 57 year old man who went by the name Tennessee. My friend and I would often go sit with him in the park and bring lunch for all of us, you could often find him feeding the pigeons with bird feed he had bought with his tiny amounts of money or talking to tourists and taking their picture on the spot where Forrest Gump sat in the movie. This man was such a giving and wonderful man the only thing he would spend the money he was given on was gifts for my friend and I and food for the birds and his other homeless friends. He would buy sandwich makings and surprise us with lunch or buy me little bracelets that he could afford from the gas stations in order to show his appreciation. I feel like its these kind of people who have nothing in the world and yet spend every penny they have on others, on friends, and on animals that know how to live and understand that, that kindness and love out ways anything that money can buy. His acts of kindness and generosity to me and my friend although to some may seem minimal were amazing – here I was trying to help him because I felt he didn’t have anything when actually he was helping me.



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Erin Columbia

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:37 am


It may sound simple, but the short of it, I was making a cake ran out of eggs, ran to the store in my raggy outfit and forgot my purse at home. Rummaging through the car for any money I could find to keep from having to go back home I found enough for some eggs. Was looking at the eggs and counting the money a lady dropped a $5.00 bill behind me and said I think you dropped that. I smiled thanked her and politely took it for as a person who gives a lot I know how good it feels to give. But, the best thing for me was my faith in people was dimishing this restored my faith and let me get back to the loving giver as well as knowing someone else knows the great feeling that comes from being a loving giver too. The chain will go on.



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Terry Simms

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:37 am


“God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son; that who so believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”



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Lynda Hopkins

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:39 am


I lived in an abusive home, and, when I was 14 years old, I told the principal of my school. He contacted the authorities, and, to make a very long story short, I went into a foster home. This wonderful couple, these 2 people who never met me, never laid eyes on me before, took me into their home, into their family, and gave me the love and security I needed so much. That was truly a profound act of kindness by 2 people that changed my life forever. God Blessed me when he put me in their home.



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Laurie

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:40 am


My neighbor’s son was diagnosed with several illnesses. My mother was watching him one day, when he quit breathing. Watching my mother give him mouth-to-mouth and resuscitating him, was a wonderful miracle!



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heather

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:43 am


The work I do can be seen by some as invasive- I try to assist people into a return to work- so I ask very personal questions, and often the soultions are grounded in a very public system where more has to be shared, and results can not be guaranteed. My background is often very different from that of my students- so distrust is a given. The largest act of selflessness came from a young mother who had previously distrusted me and everyone else; coming from an institutional background she had real reasons to be guarded, she knew the rules of help and that she would likely be let down again by a system that haas too many holes in it. The biggest act of kindness is that she gradually offered me trust she had not shared with others. She kept coming back to work towards her future, and has now gone forward with her life and education. This is such a great gift as it blesses all of her five children- showing them who they can become, and reached me whe I was vulnerable to feeling that there was little I could do- she reminded me of the power of one word, and the power of one action. Her kindness and love she offers her children is an inspiration- and her ability to reach out as she did to me was truly a great act of kindness.



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Lindsay

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:47 am


My classmates and I were in class one day, and a very large centipede was walking around underneath everyone’s chairs. Many students got up and moved away, while others were attempting to crush the centipede. Then, one of my classmates put up her arms to prevent people from getting closer to the centipede. She used her bare hands to collect it and take it outside. When asked about it, this girl said that although she’s not particularly fond of centipedes, and really didn’t want to pick it up, it’s a creature just like we are and doesn’t need to be crushed. Holding a centipede in one’s hands to protect it from danger is certainly a kindness that doesn’t happen very often.



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Pamela Huyser

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:49 am


I had moved to New York City with dreams of getting into publishing. After subletting for 3 months, I had run out of money. I was working as a proofreader through a few agencies, but I wasn’t making enough on which to live. I told a dear friend of mine, who lived in Harlem, that I would probably have to move back to Oregon. He owned a 4-apt building that he was fixing up. Two of the apartments were rented and two were semi-finished. He told me that I could stay in one of these apartments (which had no kitchen or bathroom, but did have heat and electricity) for three months until I could get on my feet. He later extended the offer (without me asking). I ended up living there for a year without having to pay rent. He also hired me at $12 an hour to help him work on the building. Because of his generosity, I was able to proofread more, get a job in the marketing department of a top Manhattan law firm and subsequently, obtain my Master’s degree in teaching. I am now happily teaching (and writing on the side) a 4th class of immigrant children–kids from all over the world.
I never would be where I am today if it weren’t for my friend Kurt’s amazing act of kindness. He truly allowed me to change my life.



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John Ferrario

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:49 am


My story is also one that is simple in nature. When I was a senior in college and found that the landlord decided not to take in anyone over the summer, an older lady was more than happy to allow me to stay with their family for the summer and for the next semester.
For all purposes, I was truly homeless for a short period of time, but out of the kindness of one person, she made a believer that kindness without looking for anything in return is and was alive and true.
We continue to stay friends even after I had graduated and moved out of state for years.
Thank you for providing an opportunity to acquire tickets for a humble, yet most introspective individual on the planet.
John



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Anonymous

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:53 am


A parent’s boundless love and limitless compassion for a child is so powerful and awesome. As a child of about 5, i was swimming in a crowded lake. Mom was on the hill on a blanket. Hundreds of people were loudly enjoying the gorgeous summer day. i went out too far and was drowning, kicked off the rocky bottom once, yelled, “Mom”, and went under for the last time. She miraculously heard that pitiful whelp above the din of the beach and flew down the hill. She says her feet never touched the ground. Intuitively she came right to me and picked me up, with a burning cigarette still in her lips. Later her feet were sore and bruised from the rocky hillside. Parents do that sort of thing every day, don’t they? that is the type of loving kindness for all sentient beings that we try to cultivate!



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Roger Lawrence ********* Baron

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:53 am


My Mother Rose Eileen ********* Baron was a saint to stray animals in our community when I was growing up. She ultimately donated almost our entire home to the housing and feeding of stray cats and dogs that others had deposited on our front lawn. My Father, an extremely kind and generous man, cooperated in this endeavor. My Brother Fred and I learned, at an early age, compassion for all of God’s creatures.



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Carrie

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:54 am


This past April as I chatted with co-workers, I mentioned that my birthday was coming up and that my family must be planning something, because no one has said anything about what we might be doing for this milestone (50 years) birthday. We chatted about age, and parents, and I mentioned that my mom is going to be 87 this July, and how I wondered if I would ever see her again because she lives on the West coast (and I live on the East coast).
We had said our tearful good-bye, my mom and me, last New Year’s Eve. It was the last day of my Christmas visit to Rainier, Washington, to see her and my sister in their new home. On the way to the airport, we stopped so Mom and I could visit my dad’s grave. As I looked at his stone, and looked at my mom standing next to me, it occurred to me that, given her age and health, given both our busy lives, and the cost of coast-to-coast travel, I may not see her again before she too has a tombstone here next to him. As I held her hand, I cried at that thought. I cried in the car. As I checked my bags at the airport and chatted with the porter, tears streamed down my face. I cried while I waited to board the plane. I cried as I said, “Coffee, please,” to the flight attendant. I cried while I flipped through magazines at 30,000 feet. I cried when I arrived home and every time I related this part of my trip to anyone.
It was too much for my daughter to bear, so she wrote a letter to her grandma. And the result of that letter was that the “surprise” I suspected turned out to be… my mom. When I came home from work that day, after having wondered aloud if I’d ever see Mom again, my daughter and son were waiting for me. They said, “Welcome to the start of your birthday weekend! Your first present is in the other room.” They took me by the hand and led me to the living room and there, waiting for me, was my mom.
I gasped. I cried. I hugged her. I laughed. That was the best, kindest, most wonderful gift ever.



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cheryl rothwell

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:01 am


The most profound act of kindness I recieved is when I was working in the hospital as a nurse and I was walking into a patients room tripped and went flying in mid air, the patient sitting in the bed got up put her arms out trying to catch me. What a great act of kindness I had recieved and do recieve everyday especially when a sick person makes you smile on a daily basis, I thank GOD everyday for their kindness.



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Susan Ussery

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:02 am


When I was 5 years old I was diagnosed with a bone tumor in my right leg needing multiple surgeries to remove. I was frightened and a very kind older man was lying on a cart awaiting surgery in the same hallway calmed me down by explaining I was never really alone that G-d was always with me and my inner strength would get me through and I would grown up to accomplish great things in my life and always remember to give something back to those around you and those less fortunate then yourself. I am 55 yrs old and his words are always with me. They have sustained me through 21 major operations in my life and have brought me peace and serenity.
You must seek the calm and peace within yourself and share these thoughts with others around you. There is always someone you know who is troubled, try to make their day better by showing them through prayer and a positive outlook their troubles may seem less and their views on life may become more peaceful.
I start every day with reading wisdom from your website which begins my day on a bright note.



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Christine

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:04 am


Greatest act of kindness? Not sure this is it, but it was beautiful. Back in May, as guests were beginning to arrive at my brother’s wedding reception, it started to rain. My eight year old nephew, the ring bearer, is quite introverted and does not say a great deal. He silently found an umbrella and stood at the front door of the reception location as all the guests arrived, with his eyes glued to the sidewalk at which every car would pull up to drop off its passengers. As each car pulled up, he ran out to the car in his mini-tuxedo, opened the door, and silently kept every woman dry as he ushered them through the front door, and returned to his perch to be sure not to miss the next guest. He must have done this for an hour, and didn’t join the reception until the last guest had arrived.



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renee

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:06 am


I have a daughter that is not a “typical” teenager. Three years ago we were sitting down discussing Christmas and what we would be buying the relatives. She held my hands and said “Mom, I dont want any presents to open this year. All i want is to sponsor a child in Zimbabwea where Liz is helping.” My face dropped, my heart began palpitating and i broke out in a sweat! here was my 12 year old daughter willing to give up all the commercialized ideas of this holiday to actually give to others. it was one of my proudest moments of my life. My friend Liz lives in Zimbawea working at an Aides orphanage. So i quickly contacted the family of Liz to see how to go about doing this. The information was sent to me and soon my daughter became a proud sponsor of a 12 year old girl that lived in a 4′ by 5′ shack with a dirt floor with her grandmother. By sponsoring her, she was able to recieve a hot meal every day, school clothes and supplies and basic supplies to shower. Liz had Catherine write my daughter a letter so on Christmas morning she had a beautiful letter from her and also some pictures taken with her friends and with liz! It was an act of kindness i will never forget! To this day, my daughter contiues to give back to others in our community and around the world!
from one proud mom, Renee!



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margaret ellen goff brady

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:07 am


i went thru several tragic events like a pro but when i least expected it and during a full blown depression my mother was rushed to the hospial with heart trouble, after staying with her, after she returned home and hiding my depression i went back to my home and fell deeper into depresion one night when i became extremely lost and suicidal i walked several miles to a downtown hospital for help but when i reached the hospital i kept walking deeper into a bad part of town with each car that passed i hoped to be hit or mugged and killed but no one obliged after feeling i wasn’t even worth killing i started to walk home perhaps it was the exhaustion from the long walk but the closer i got to my home the heavier each step got and the more i wanted to make it back home and with each car that passed i was scared now i wanted to live to make it home and rest in my bed and pray for GOD’S forgiveness and guidance a block from my home a van slowed down then parked on the other side of the street just a bit in front of me i was shaking and started to run the rest of the way looking quickly back only to see a woman emerge from the van and go into her home feeling foolish i realized all these events had helped me to feel i wasn’t ever alone i just needed to take time to let GOD show me i was loved and that he is always there he was there while i prayed for my mother’s recovery he was there when i felt helpless and unable to help her and he answered my prayer to help her and help me to help her he knew i needed to live to help her and he walked with me for miles till i wanted to live again and then walked me safely home
this is GOD’S kindness it is always available for everyone sometimes it is sent though strangers, or the silence of a friend but it is always GOD WHO KNOWS WANT YOU NEED AND MAKES IT AVAILABLE FOR YOU ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS ACCEPT and not by saying yes or no to the acceptance but just realiizing it is HE WHO SENT THE CALM AFTER THE STORM
——————————————————————————–



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L. Web

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:08 am


The most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed is not one single event but rather the collective actions of my parents, through out their lifetimes. They have given me the profound gifts of years of support, love, encouragement, and have always extended these virtues out to all others with whom they come in contact as well. They are known by most friends and acquaintances to be the people to “turn to” when in need. They have offered others a place to rest, long-term shelter to some, a good meal to anyone who enters their home, generous monetary gifts to those who were really desperate; they consistently offer their gifts with no expectation for a “pay back” and they time and again continue to extend their unyielding kindness, simply for the sake of doing “good.”
There were years when my family was not in a position to offer much of anything except kindness and acceptance. Today, they are fortunate to be able to offer this and much more, and they do, to all. I believe my parents personify the concept of treating others as we would like to be treated, which can be difficult in this day to carry out into our practices.
I cherish the gifts my parents have given to others much; I am truly richer though from the example they have shown to me– this ultimate gift of kindness they have bestowed upon me.



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Phillip Owen

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:10 am


Love to see Dalai Lama, this is a life dream for me.
Peace and love ,Phillip Owen



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Elizabeth

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:12 am


a few weeks ago my youngest son Brad died he was 23yrs old … he was very spiritual .. and had a lot of life to give … now some years ago Brad found out his friend ,, that lives in Englad his name Adam had just herd he had Cancer ,, we had only been in the States a few months ,, Brad grew up with Adam over the next 8 years Adam went through everything anyone could with cancer ,, never knowing if he would make it .. 8 yrs of terrible pain … My som Brad could not bear to hear of his pain ,, feeling it almost .. so Brad had an idea ,, he would work ,,save every penny he could ,, to give Adam a vacation ,, Adam came to the States ,, they drove all the way to Vegas and had three weeks of fun .. Adam by this time was not doing to good ,, he could hardly walk but the strength of friendship and love these to young men had was incredable ,, they made it ,, and had a ball .. Adam today is still in pain .. when he herd Brad died ,, he was so sad ..and cried a mountain of tears .. he could not make it to the funeral … as money was tight … so a few weeks later . we had a celerbration of Brads life ,,and to our great surprize Adam made it ,, it was only for three days .. but he made it .. the day before he was due to come out ,, he had a call from the hospital telling him they found something on his chest .. this news knocked him for six .. but this young mans courage ans strength didnt derter him from his journey to be amongst Brads friends and family … his courage and strength inspired all that got to know him .. the story goes a lot deeper .. and brings tears of both pain and joy to us all .. blessings to both boys .. were so very proud of you both .. i am Brads mother .. and very proud to be telling you of two very inspring young men .. blessings Elizabeth



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Rachel

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:13 am


One winter day I was coming home from work and pulled into our snowy driveway to park my car. When I got out I noticed a little dark spot in the snow in the track my tires had made as I had pulled in. As I looked closer I was shocked to find it was a tiny shrew! Because of the snow he had been protected from the weight of my tires and was able to shudder most of his body free from the packed down snow, but as I got close to him I could see his one back foot was packed down in and he was stuck. Fearing that he would try to do something drastic to get away from me and hurt himself if I tried to get close to help dig him out, I did the only other thing I could think of to get him free. Quickly I ran inside and grabbed a hair dryer and a huge extension cord. I plugged it all in and ran back out to the driveway and on the lowest setting possible used the hair dryer to melt the snow around his foot and set him free:) He scurried off unharmed!
This probably isn’t the most profound story or anything even close, but I thought this was a good place to tell my little tale:)



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Lydia

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:26 am


I am in the process of receiving the most profound kindness imaginable to me on this level of consciousness.
I was raised by parents who loved their children, and were also limited by alcoholism and depression. I suffered sexual and emotional abuse for the first 18 years of my life, from several male members of my family and community, and with far reaching consequences into my adult life.
The universe has provided me with a therapist who is kind, compassionate, and above all has impeccable boundaries. This man sits in a safe space with me every week and listens, cares, and guides me with wisdom and connection to spirit. The gift of growth and safety, of knowing that the world is a safe and beautiful place, and that I can have my wounds healed, and have the gift of helping others heal, is the kindest act I can believe in.



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Gina

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:26 am


My dearest friend and her husband were returning from a vacation . They were waiting in the airport for a super delayed flight. Across the room was a mother and small child, perhaps 3-4 years of age. The mother and child were on stand-by. My girlfriend watched a bit as the mother began to cry. What disturbed my friend was that everyone sitting in this area ignored this woman with her child. My friend went over to her and talked to her about what was going so wrong to bring on such tears. The mother explained that there were no seats and that she had very little money so she could not stay in a hotel overnight to wait for another flight. My friend knew the woman was of little means. My friend comforted the mother and child with soothing assurance that she would help them . My friend arranged a night at a hotel for them both and gave the mother adequate money to assist her.
The onlookers seemed irritated by the childs crying and discomfort. My fiend was appalled to watch other humans so unitersted in the distress of another. When she told me about the woman and her child she explained it in such a natural way . She simply did what she knew should be done. This is not some huge heart wrenching story but the accumalation of such occurences combined make us all the good humans we are meant to be. It is my friends belief as well as mine that one does not have to acomplish grandiose acts of kindness but more so be kind everyday. Living kindness is challenging but it’s so worth it .



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JoAnn Tanis

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:27 am


Last year after moving into a new home I had foot surgery. I was single with not many friends in my new neighborhood. I could not walk for quite awhile after the surgery. My new neighbor – whom I did not even know at that point – came into my life and my home and took care of me totally. Without me even asking. Caring for me after surgery, shopping, taking me to the Dr. office when I needed it, caring for my cat, feeding me, being a good and true friend out of nowhere. And for no compensation except to help a neighbor. Since then we have become close and true friends.
This person knows the real meaning of caring and love and I will never ever forget the kindness she gave to me.



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Ana

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:29 am


Every single day, I see God’s kindness.



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Judith

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:30 am


Many years ago I was traveling in Turkey and was visiting a very small town. I spoke almost no Turkish and no one there spoke much English, but I had a lovely day with them watching them dye wool for carpets. It started to rain and everyone took shelter in homes. A very old woman in a typical black chador beckoned me to share her spot of cover under the stone roof connecting her home and barn. As I was standing there dripping wet she came over to me and wiped all the rain from my face with her bare hands. I have never felt such pure love and kindness. We shared a wonderful moment in time where language, age, and nationality faded away as two people came together with open hearts. In my entire life I have never quite felt that same wonderful, loving touch. To me this was a defining point in my life that started me on the path to enlightenment. Even now, when I think back to that day, I can still feel her rough, hard-worked hands and their unbelievaby tender touch.



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Sally Gridley

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:30 am


the most wonderful and giving act of mankind I have ever seen came in the Christmas of 1982 from complete strangers.
Christmas is a time of wonder for young and old. A time to remember the beauty of the past, love of others and treasures of a family.
My brother a young man who had been abrittle diabetic all his life and now in kidney failure from diabetes and very close to death. Kidney machines were doing what they could but could not replace a real kidney.
Christmas eve a Mom and Dad’s worst nightmare came true. Their young son had been in an automobile accident and as they raced to the hospital emergency room they prayed every prayer they knew for the son’s well being. Waiting in the emergency room they prayed and prayed for their son’s life. At last a doctor came out to say he had done all he could but their son’s life had ended. Their Pain so great so horrible only few parents are ever forced to experience.
The amazement of human kindness happen right then. In an emergency roon late at night just 24 hours before Christmas in a state of pain words can not describe. The dead son’s parents, strangers to my brother, to my family, in their hour of the most pain they would ever know on this earth. Stopped and thought of others and offered their son’s kidney to anyone who needed a kidney. My brother’s life was spared by the compassion for others given through tears and pain of life’s worst blow, a parent and the death of their child.
To this day, 25 years later, this mircale of a parent at a time they can barely live through theirselfs thinking of someone else. Compassion for strangers they will never know. Reaching out to another to help at a time they can barely live through theirselves goes beyond human compassion.
In 1982 organ donating was not a common gift and still in infant stage. Their act of kindness and compassion for another in their hour of life’s worst blackness has never left my heart or soul.



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Diana Mele

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:31 am


Empathy…the silence of listening with an open heart and feeling the pain of another’s heart.



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Pat

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:33 am


My friend, John, gave me a car as a gift while we were dating……my children and I were driving in a van with no heat (and the windows kept freezing up). It was kind, compassionate, and he expected nothing in return. We did marry a couple of years later…..and are still very happily married (coming up on 7 yrs now). His compassion and support for us has been inspiring and uplifting. We’re so fortunate to have such a wonderful man in our lives. I’m happy, productive and at 50 enjoying the happiest years of my life now, in part due to his loving, giving nature.



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Stacey

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:34 am


The most profound act of kindness is at the hospital where I work. We are always really busy and it can get very stressful. We help each other out. Just hearing the words, “Are you ok?” during those moments
are alone healing.
I also have to say: Auspicious! I have always wanted to visit NYC. It just so happens my sister, and a friend are flying out Oct 13th. How cool is this?
I can’t believe it!



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Eric Flagg

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:34 am


No single act of kindness is as profound to me as is the cyclical nature of life in balance. One life is given so that another life may go on and ultimately that life gives for the next. Over that last century, we have become more and more aware of racism in the west and more recently we are becoming more and more aware that we are all one global village, but I bet that if we continue on this path we will see that all life is connected and that when each life that is given for the next we are helping all life and all love to be propelled into the future. Kindness and compassion is for all and for the self at the same moment.



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ann marie dryg

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:34 am


1 out of 3 women have been sexually abused in their youth. I am one of them. I am a single mother now of two girls. I have been diagnosed first as bipolar when I was 15 and kept that diagnoses for 23 years-mostly not on medications. I have for the last 3 years been labeled one with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I struggle with not yelling or hitting my daughters on a regular basis. When they go with their father on weekends- there is a drunk uncle who has physically abused them last summer 2006 June. Their father continues to let him be present on their visits as he is in one of 3 houses on the property where my husband and his family lives. My fears and my own issues are so on the edge, I practice Qigong moving meditation, I see his holiness when I can, I try and lead a concious, awake, compassionate life…but anger that comes up from my abuse and fear of my daughters abuse is a daily threat. The greatest act of compassion has inspired my goals for my career. There is a place called “Talkline” in San Francisco -415-441-kids- a 24hour hotline for stressed out parents. They have services that have helped me greatly. And one therapist has been with me for 2 years and has shown so much compassion and understanding and has been there for me like I can only dream a family member could be there for me as my mother died before I was as aware as I am now. My mother always pushed me to seek therapy. I never had good experiences until this great therapist that showed such great kindness and compassion. It makes me want to help people in the same way with real compassion and patience and understanding that not every psychodynamic method works for everyone, but sometimes somatic therapy of getting out of your head and into your body and feeling where in your body your emotions are sitting. And the new psychological theory of “positive psychology”- which is a bit buddhist that everything is temporary and be in the now not the past. Anyway, my greatest witness and exposure to kindness is the gift of understanding and sincere desire to help me from my therapist.



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Vanessa-la

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:36 am


I was 4 1/2 years old when I had a very interesting experience at the church my mom made us go to on Sudays. My dad was working this Sunday, so he was not with us. He was fullfilling his obligations to Country that Sunday, but I knew I had to talk to him. It wasn’t just what happened at church, but what my freinds said to me later, about this placed called “hell” that I questioned if it even existed and for that matter, how did they know, REALLY know? They said because it says so in the Bible, but I told them the Bible is just a book.
I ran home and asked my mom some questions about Jesus, and asked if he really said that we should not kill? “Oh, yes, mom said, that is one of the commandments.” I was thinking now, thinking a lot.
Dad came home and I ran out to greet him, as usual. I was emphatcally saying I HAD to talk to him. I asked him a question that obviously took him by surprize and he asked what was behind it, so I told him about my friends. That is when we began a discourse in religion. He mentioned other world religions, and I jumped in excitment when he said “Buddhism”. “THAT’S THE ONE DAD, THAT’S THE ONE I HAVE TO LEARN ABOUT”. He was surprised, and happy I think, because he knew about Buddhism having spent time in both China and Tibet. And that is what he said.
He told me some things about Buddhism, then he told me what was happening to His Holiness, The Dalai Lama and the Tibetan people. How the Chinese invaded their country and He was forced to leave, I began to cry. “DAD, YOU HAVE TO HELP HIM, YOU GOTTA HELP”. He explained that he could not, that he would be killed by the Chinese if he tried to go back now. I told him, “BUT DAD, THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT, YOU GOTTA HELP HIM”. He told me that the U.S. was doing what it could to help, and that maybe in a few years he could do something to help. [Remember, this was 1959.] He said something about a treaty expiring.
Then he looked at me and said “Why are you so concerned about this man, you never met him?”
I had to think how to answer that. So, I said that “If the Chinese can do this to the King of the Buddhist [My dad ddescribed His Holiness as both a King and A Buddhist, so to me He is King of the Buddhists.] then the Chinese could do it to anyone, even maybe us someday.” Then again, I continued, I said that “maybe it had something to do with the “angel” I met in church this morning.”
“You didn’t tell me about this before, what happened?”
This is excerpt from a book I am writing.I had the great good fortune to finally meet His Holiness, in Auroville India in 1973. When I am near Him, I always reflect on that time with my dad, learning important things, caring for His Holiness, the people of Tibet and in the great benefit of hearing uncorrupted Teachings. Vanessa-la



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Mary Ellen

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:38 am


My best friend who’s a Mom of a 7 year old girl and a wife, signed up to be a bone marrow donor many years ago. In recent years she has been matched to people in need three times. Without question she moved forward with the process in all the cases, for people she had not met before but knew needed what she could provide them. As I type this I can’t help but get emotional at this beautiful thing she has done.
Mary Ellen



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LAuren Horton

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:40 am


The greatest act of kindness? Well that came from my husband. My husband found buddisim almost 2 years ago. Our son was born with alot of health issues which required us to travel almost 4 hours to a specialist. At the same time I was also dealing with my dad being seriously ill in the hospital. One day I had to take my sone to his GI specialist and my husband was working midnights. As he was walking in the door I was leaving to go to this appoinment and leaving my husband to take care of our 4 very hyper daughters. I Was gone the whole day and I didn’t walk in the door until almost 7pm. When I got in the house I had noticed my house was very clean. He had done everything from map the floor to scrubbing the sink. Everything was clean. I had been so sleep deprived from dealing with a sick baby I didn’t have the time to clean before I left for my sons Dr appt. At the same time I also lost my dad to his illnesses. Not only did I have a sick son to take care of and the fear of losing him but I also lost my dad at the same time. He was a very wonderful man in my time of need. Today from that one act of kindness I was shown that if you just ask for help it will be done even if you don’t ask.



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christina delgado

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:41 am


it was 1995, my brother ronald and i were not talking. my brother vincent had just gotten his 17 year old girlfriend pregnant. we were young and foolish (myself 25, ronald 24 and vincent 22). the family as we know it was falling apart.
on february 14, 1995 my mom had a stroke and passed away. as painful as it was, her death pulled our family back together. it taught us how precious life is and how we should not take any moment of it for granted.
that is the most profound act of kindness that my mom up in heaven could have ever given us.



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red quickness

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:45 am


the more than kind treatment my daughters and I received from hospice @ riverside in Columbus Ohio….my oldest daughter (23) was dying in the fullblown last stages of aids
not only were they (hospice) kind but respectful of my daughter’s condition and the sensitivity of myself and my younger daughter during this most unexplainable time of our lives. How they worked together as a team to ease robbin’s pain and suffering, how they physically took care of her kept her clean without ever a scornfull word, deed or action, back rubs, foot care and foot rubs….whatever they could do to bring comfort to her was done with heartfelt energy.
My robbin passed in ’91, and still to this day…my heart feels the humility, grace, respect, loving concern, viligence and constant up dates and calls to us to report any concerns and changes in robbin before she passed….there are really no words great enough to honor those people who were with us during our time of such emotional pain, and needs. And I might add that the place (hospice) was spotless, clean, and visually beautiful, french door, windows, fireplace, rocking chairs books…tea whatever the families needed; to not only make their loved ones comfortable but that same comfort extended to us
at any and all times



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Deborah H-Szantos

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:49 am


After 17 years of betrayal and abuse from the father of my five boys I found the strength to file for divorce. We were fortunate to have 2 houses to seperate our lives into, but he lived in the fully owned house w/his “new family” while I stayed with the boys in the rotting mobile home on the newly purchased land that was to “heal our relationship”.
As the proceedings took almost 2 years, I was thrown into poverty and despair, only sometimes recieving $300 a month from their father for child support. My parents were deceased and I had no one to turn to for financial support for 2 teenagers, a 9 & 7 year old and my toddler of 2 years.
The father and his family wanted all our real estate sold and the cash divided between us. I asked for our land and mobile home beacause it was a good place to raise the children. Lucky for us the court agreed and I was able to stay there with my kids. But the payments were $1500 a month and I was a stay-at-home mom with very few workplace skills so we soon found ourselves facing foreclosure and homelessness. Imagine that: 5 kids and a mother on the streets!
I was able to work a little here and there, we grew a lot of our food, went to churches and organizations for food baskets, recieved state & financial aid, the boys worked and went to school…it was a very difficult time to make ends meet and it was not getting better or easier.
My good friend and neighbor saw our plight and started loaning me money for the mortgage payments. We allowed our attraction for one another to grow and develop and soon he was eating meals w/us and offering help as best he could. He worked self employed and had left his long time relationship a year before. He did not relish the idea of taking on 5 boys-to-men, he was unsure of their response and his own son had married and was expecting a child.
None the less we chose to seal our fates together and become a couple. It was not easy with teenagers and children in crisis from divorce, maintaining two houses and learning to love each other. It required enormous sacrifice from my good friend to adapt to our ways and quirky lives. The boys were not all welcoming, even tho he was providing for them monetarily since their blood father left the state and moved 1500 miles away. Imagine being a child and acknowlegding your blood father’s abandonment!
For the next 10 years my dear friend supported my family and became a pillar of security and love for all of us. Some times it was very scary and we were all unsure if we would be able to stay together on the land, but he stayed with us and made sure our needs were met, finacially, physically and emotionally. To this day he works to continue our simple in means but rich in spirit lifestyle and all the boys love him as the “step-in” parent he has become.
His show of compassion for our misfortune has allowed us to survive and prosper as a family and I will be forever grateful. Our children have grown into healthy and strong, socially active young men.
His giving and loving nature has healed my rage and sadness of loss and betrayal. He has shown us all how to be a good human being!



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Suzanne

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:50 am


Three years ago, shortly before I was laid off from my company (with whom I am back with now), I woke up one morning feeling absolutely at my lowest. I was lonely. It was more than just feeling sorry for oneself, and I had made a major move with my family from Nevada to Iowa, and I didn’t know very many people in Iowa. I had to get up and drag myself to get ready for work, and in the car on my way to work, I asked God out loud, “Please, God, I am feeling really terrible and lonely. I need a sign in this world that I am not alone.”
When I was feeling so bad, I was contemplating the meaning of a genetic disease in my husband’s family. I found out about the disease the night before my son was born in 1998. It claimed my father in law’s life in 2002. Off and on, through these years, my worries would take me to that dark place within where I was thinking I would soon lose my husband, daughter, and son, all to this disease.
Well, I made it to work, and forced myself into the daily routine all of us have. I was well past halfway through my day when a woman, a customer came through my line, someone I had seen once or twice before, stopped with her purchases before me. I asked all the perfunctory questions while she smiled. I have absolutely no idea still to this day how we got to the subject, but I’ll never forget her sentence to me: “I don’t know why I am supposed to give you a message, but that you need to know that you are not alone in this world, and that we are all loved.” With a beautiful smile, she said this!
I didn’t remember my morning’s conversation in my car on my way to work that day until the day was almost over. It was a sudden realization with all the goosebumps I could muster, that I had been on the receiving end of a beautiful postcard from God.



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Lisa Dye

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:54 am


I am a recovering alcoholic, sober about 6-1/2 years now. I drank heavily for nearly 16 years. The last year and a half was especially horrible, lonely and terrifying. I was extremely ill and dying, my body beginning to shut down. A blown circuit in my apartment (which was empty and dark) led to the necessity of my contacting my landlord, who then in turn had an electrician contact me. After meeting Mark, the electrician, who was the most gentle and kind person I had ever met, my rigid void of feelings and emotions began to come alive for the first time in nearly a decade. We became engaged in only three weeks, and the knowledge that this union was meant to be was palpable. After knowing Mark only 5 weeks or so, I had the dubious pleasure of informing him that I was, indeed, dying of late stage alcoholism (he worked a lot at the time, and I hid the constant drinking, somehow. He also had no prior experience with alcohol, or alcoholism.) Upon hearing the news, Mark didn’t blink an eye as I told him that for the first time in years, I was ready to fight the disease because I wasn’t completely alone anymore. His love and kindness were steadfast; he stayed by my side through ER visits, treatment centers, illness, relapse. His kindness was, and still is, immovable. In two days, we will celebrate 8 years of marriage! My husband, Mark Dye, proves every day of his life that kindness is an action word. I am truly blessed at his capacity for love. Thank you for letting me share my story.



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Margaret Clarke

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:54 am


The most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed is difficult for me to describe because throughout my lifetime so many moments have occurred where I have been on the receiving end of a strangers kind gesture or I have been honored to have an opportunity be kind to another.
I am not sure which is more profound to receive kindness or to give. I think being able to be a witness to loving kindness when we can so easily focus on the negative experiences and live in fear is what is profound.
Every moment every opportunity to honor another be they an intimate acquaintance or a stranger who we may never meet again, to see the Buddha in anyone and everyone that is always the most loving act especially because it is the most difficult.



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Nik

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:55 am


Good Mornin’
As someone who has himself has known the pain, hopelessness,loneliness, and desparation of addiction, To see a fellow addict return for help again and again and offer them a hug and welcome when others have given up on them. I’d like to beleive I understand the lesson on turning ones own suffering into the tool to offer that same kindness to the next suffering soul.



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Shari

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:58 am


I was the recipient of one of the most selfless acts of kindness. I was with my son and our dog on the way to visit my father for his 80th birthday when my car broke down. Frustrated, with no money in my pocket or the bank, I sat crying in the front seat of a hot car, about 12miles from my home, not sure what to do. I had no one to call. A man approached the car and asked if he could help. While his family waited in their vehicle, this man crawled under the car, poked around the engine, and eventually diagnosed the problem. While he was doing that, their teenage daughter cut the top off of her water bottle to give my dog a refreshing drink and his wife offered encouraging words to me and my son. He got my car towed all the way home and actually came to my home the next day with the parts necessary to fix it. He gave me a ride to work that morning and picked me up in the afternoon and spent the entire day working on the car in my driveway. He got it fixed and refused to accept any type of payment. He really saved me that day and all he wanted in return was a thank you. And his family offered such support and kindness. I will never forget that as the kindest most selfless act I have ever witnessed.



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Jackie

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:58 am


When I was in college a friends brothers house burned down. I moved out of my apartment and onto campus and told them to take all of the furniture, dishes, linens etc. to have (because they had lost everything.)
I was in line at a cafe when a small boy excitedly pointed out the police car going by. “They must be looking for us!” he said. His mom said someone had stolen his bike off the porch and they had made a police report. Now the little boy was sure the police were out looking for his bike. I remember feeling it was sad that he lost his bike but tragic that was losing his innocence. I bought a bike with every bell and whistle imaginable. I found the little boy with his mom walking near the cafe and pulled to the sidewalk. I got out and said “You may not remember me but I remember you. I know that someone took your bike recently. While it is true that bad things happen and make us sad, I want you to always remember that sometimes good things happen-just as unexpectedly-too. I took the bike out of my truck and gave it to him, then got into my truck and left.
I worked in a hospital when one night a family (they were from Cambodia) was brought in because there house had burned to the ground. They lost everything. For two weeks I collected used and extra things from people I worked with. I got everything they could need including furniture, clothes and groceries. I had an old beat up dump truck and packed it full. It took 2 trips.
A coworker’s 5 yo daughter was diagnosed with retinoblastoma (cancer of the eye.) She lost one eye and the other had 50% sight. She would eventually lose that eye also and probably not live to be 10 yrs old. Her mom was a single mother and they did not have much money. I was haunted that the little girl would never see the princesses at Disney that she loved. My family decide to use our christmas club money to send the mom and little girl on a cruise to Disney. We went to a Disney store and got a suitcase and put all of the trip information (done anonymously by triple A) into the suitcase and left it on her desk at work. They had a wonderful trip and still do not know where it came from.
I try to live my life giving and not taking. Both to people and to the earth. I am anxious that I am writing about these things because it seems a bit “braggish.” But because I am Buddhist and cannot afford to do something so extravagant (financially) I am hoping to win these tickets. Please know that the gift will be paid forward for the rest of my life. Thank you for your consideration.



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Harry Stafford

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:02 pm


Years ago I was considering leaving a fundamentalist seminary because I no longer could agree with their narrow and belligerant views. I consulted a professor (a friend of my parents who taught there) whom I considered at the time a wise and caring friend, telling him confidentially about my doubts. I thought it was safe to do so. School was ending for the year and I left in a day or two to go work in a church for the summer. When I arrived at my summer address I received an official letter from the army directing me to report for a physical. I had not withdrawn from the seminary at that point, so called to see what was going on. My “friend” had told the registrar I had withdrawn from school, and they decided to write the draft board to this effect. It was the Viet Nam era, and I would no doubt have been sent there. I had less than a week, so I flew to another, more liberal seminary I was considering, and was received with great kindness. The President invited me into his office, and after hearing my story — without seeing transcripts of any kind — he dictated (while I was still in his office) to his secretary a letter to the draft board telling them I was enrolled there for the fall. His was an act of generosity and kindness — and faith — that I have never forgotten, and my years at his school were years of wonderful growth and learning. He may also have saved my life.



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Robin McCord

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:03 pm


I came upon my current practice of the principles of Buddhism in a way that I can only believe to be a loving, compassionate Spirit entering my life. I was going through a very difficult divorce and was definitely seeking and grasping for some understanding to the workings of this plane of existence and my reason for being here and basically just some thread to help me get through each day. I wondered into a bookstore and headed straight to the “Religion Section”. My eyes were drawn to the Eastern Religion section with a large selection of books featuring Buddhism. I had never read anything about Buddhism before and my hand was guided to a book written my Lama Surya Das. I opened to the first page and it was as if he had reached into my heart and knew every feeling that I was experiencing at that time. I sat down on a chair there, tears running down my face as I read his words. I picked myself up and went to the front to purchase the book. A young man approximately 30, with hair to his shoulders and dressed in a shirt and tie, took the book from my hand and smiled. He said “This is an awesome book, did you know that the Lama was going to be here in town for a seminar next month?” I said “No, I just happened on the book and it grabbed me by the heart.” He said, “The tickets are kind of pricey.” I then told him that I really couldn’t afford that right now but I was very excited to have found the book. As he was holding the book in his hands he turned his back to me for a split second and then handed me the book with a beautiful wide smile. As I paid for it he said, “I really hope that you find what you are looking for.” I felt such a warm feeling inside as he said this and I headed out the double glass doors. When I got inside my car I opened up the book to find two tickets to the seminar inside. I can’t explain the all encompassing feelings of gratitude and awe that I experienced at that moment and how my path in life had led to that one moment in time that has changed my life from that day forward. When I went to the seminar and heard the Lama speak it was as if I had finally found the path that I had been searching for all my life and the Universe and all its ups and downs finally made sense to me, and the guidance and strength that I had forever been seeking had been brought to my heart by that unassuming angel in the bookstore.



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Donald Hartwell

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:13 pm


Hail to the Jewel in the Lotus
The most profound act of loving kindness is that which the Buddha gave to all of us, the hope that we can each stop suffering.



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erich klain

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:16 pm


The most random act of kindness I have ever experienced is my birth. I have been very fortunate to hvae been born into my family. my whole life my family has been giving to me and helping me. It is unconditional. even when I have abused it, they have helped. Recently, my wife left me and I was amazed at their responses. Kindness, no trashing of my ex. They continued to encourage me to look at the brighter side of things. My family has helped me so much financially and spirtually. Ok, i think I am getting mushy. but i have been sad and they have helped me. My family includes some special friends also. I also think that in the end many of my unfortunate experiences has only happened to me to bless my family with the spirit of giving.
thanks for reading



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Patty P

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:21 pm


The most profound act of kindness given to me was my life… I am filled with gratiude every day that my mother..too young to keep me..gave me life and gave a child to a family who could not have their own…my parents… I give back by trying to be certain that my actions through the gift of my life give back to her…using my talents and gifts to make the world a brighter more compassion filled place… My life was an act of kindness!



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Lyn Steuart

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:27 pm


I experience great kindness each morning when I wake up being given the gift another day in the journey of life and the opportunity to learn compassion for myself and for others and to find joy in the midst of whatever the day brings to me. I as I get older I am acutely aware of appreciating each moment and being grateful at the end of the day!.



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Joyce Bennett

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:31 pm


I work in a medical daycare center and our clients are elderly people who are medically fragile and often live alone with minimal financial resources.
One of our clients had suffered a stroke and depends on a cane and a leg brace to ambulate. She can be very demanding and is often non-compliant with her doctor’s prescribed care. Our staff recognizes that her demeanor is a result of living alone with her physical limitations. We do our best to provide the TLC that she deserves but we often feel frustrated.
On one Friday, this client was tearful because the strap that secures her leg brace had broken off. She had attempted to put the brace together with her one good hand using scraps of tape she had at home. Her big fear is falling and even though she tried to secure it, the brace was not secured enough to prevent a fall.
I made several calls but was unable to get the brace repaired or replaced in time for the weekend. Our daycare center is only open Monday to Friday.I consulted with another employee to see what we could do to help this client.This employee has been going through many personal and medical problems of her own and the week had been very stressful for her. During our break, she became tearful and admitted feeling extremely overwhelmed. But, when I explained our elderly client’s dilemma, this employee developed a sense of calm and devised a plan to help our client. What I witnessed next was nothing short of beautiful.
I went to a local craft shop and purchased material to create a sturdy brace strap. We have a sewing machine at the center in the arts and crafts room.This employee who was born with only one hand proceeded to prepare the sewing machine and within the next hour had fixed the brace with a strap that was very secure.To watch her threading the needles, cutting the materials and positioning the brace to accomodate the machine was truly amazing and a labor of love. It was not an easy task for someone with two hands. This employee understands all too well what it is like to live with a handicap. She could have walked away and said we’ll take care of it next week, but she forgot about her own troubles and ministered to this client.
I was a witness to a selfless act and true kindness. We all felt blessed that day and this client went home secure in the knowledge that she is not alone, but part of a family that cares for her.



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Elaine S. Larson

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:33 pm


I work in a maximum security hospital for people with severe mental illnesses. It can be a dangerous place to work especially for our front line staff. One day, one of the clients picked up a footstool and lifted it over his head to throw it at a staff member when another client came up behind him and took the footstool away from him to help keep the staff member safe. He did this freely without expectation of anything in return. When complimented about his actions, he said it was just something he saw that he needed to do. I tell the clients often that they are the bravest people in the world for getting up everyday and facing their mental illnesses.
Namaste.



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James E. Colby

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:33 pm


Save Burma NOW!



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Ruth T. Nowatzki

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:37 pm


My beginning in this life was a difficult one. I never knew my father(my parents divorced when I was a year old), but, I do know that my father beat me badly when I was six months old. My Mother then married my step-father when I was five. He beat her for the next 30 years, even when she was pregnant. I am so thankful for the friends of my Mother’s, through the years, who gave us refuge in the middle of the night, or, any other time when we were trying to run for our lives from my step-father. These wonderful people opened their homes and hearts to us, and I will always remember them. I too, have had the Joy of such good friends in my adult life. These people listen to my broken-ness, and advise and help me in every possible. They are more centered to the Earth, and through them, and, with my studys, I am working to become a whole person again, with the hope that I, to,can be able to also help others as I have been helped.
Thank-you
Ruth Nowatzki



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Jon Galloway

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:39 pm


Namaste,
The most profound act of kindness that i have received was that of my mother, both now, in the past, and in the future as well. In this one life, i have been given the most amazing mother that i think i have ever met, however i might be a bit bias. She gave me life, nurtured me as a baby, taught me as a child, and supports me as an adult. I had a rather rough young life but no matter what was happening, she was always there for me with her loving smile. i see her as the embodiment of loving kindness. She is my Avalokiteshvara. She comforted me through the deaths of four friends of mine in high school, she was there for me when my grandfather died, and even through her own problems, she was always there to help me. Even when i developed a rare seizure disorder, she never stopped searching for the best medical help that she could find. She has been one of my biggest teachers when it came to the path to enlightenment. So, out of all that i have experienced, i would have to say that my mother would be the most profound act of loving kindness that i have ever experienced and i only hope that one day i can return the love that she has given to me in the same profound way.
Be well in peace



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ADELAIDE MORRO

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:41 pm


I CAME BACK FROM EUROPE, WITH MY 2 CHILDREN. I STARTED WORKING AS A WAITRESS,,SO I MET A CUSTOMER WHO WAS A NICE MAN, FRIENDLY, BUDDDIST, AND JUST HAPPY, WE BECAME FRIENDS A CUSTOMER AT THE COFFEE SHOP,I WANTED TO LEARN MASSAGE AND HE JUST HAPPEN TO BE A MASSAGE THERAPIST. MY LIFE WAS A LITTL BROKEN AT THE TIME WITH MANY PIECES TORN,WELL HE WAS TO BECOME MY TEACHER,BUT NOT JUST FOR MASSAGE FOR LIFE, LOVING ME UNCONDITIONALY, COMPASSIONATE,AND HELPING TO LOVE, AND GROW IN ALL WAYS,SOMETIMES IN A KIND WAY AND OTHER TIMES IN A NOT SO LOVING WAY,I STARTED TO LEARN, WHAT I DID NOT GET FROM MY FAMILY. I RECEIVED THIS FROM A GAY MAN,.ALL THE TIME NOT REALIZING IN THE BEGINING WHEN I MET MY TEACHER THAT HE WAS DIEING OF AIDS.HE MADE SUCH A LOVING ,COMPASSIONATE,IMPRESSION IN MY LIFE, THAT ALMOST 20 SOMETHING YEARS LATER HE IS STILL IN MY HEART AND PRAYERS , FOR WHAT I GOT WAS SO MUCH MORE,THAT IT CAN NEVER BE PAID,I TRY TO PASS IT ON WHATEVER I CAN TO THE SOULS THAT I MEET,NAMASTE



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James E. Colby

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:44 pm


As the prior post exclaims. “Save Burma NOW,” I discovered the way many years ago in San Francisco (1957-61) at the old Zen Center and to this day I practice whole minefulness towards humanity. The most recent act of profound knidness was when I died (literally)twice and was told, “Your time is not now, go back and follow the way to wisdom.” I practice that everyday, knowing why the reason for my life.
“What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?”



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Tabitha R Messer

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:47 pm


The most profound act of kindness that I have ever received was a seemingly very small act that just so happened to save my life. I was in a very bad relationship and had reached the absolute lowest point I have ever reached. I decided that I wanted to die, but I wanted to have fun doing it. I started dealing and smoking crack cocaine. I stayed in places that are never safe for anyone. I was looking for the opportunity to get killed at any time. I really believed that no one cared if I was dead or alive. Then, one evening while I was out running the streets a man that I knew stopped by my house and briefly spoke to my roommate. She said that he had been concerned about my not showing up to class (he taught aikido) and how I looked when I was there. That was all he had told her. I was so shocked by the fact that someone I never gave a second thought to actually cared—I went and spoke to him. I gave away the crack that I still had and immediately, with his help, stopped smoking it. I never went to rehab; I just suddenly had something to live for. Today, I am about to graduate from Appalachian State University with a four-year degree in geology and that man is now my husband. These years with him have been the best five years of my life. I am thankful that he took the time to show that he cared even just a little bit when no one else did; I am here today and able to do kind things for others because of that one tiny act of kindness he did for me.



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Amy

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:50 pm


Throughout my life, I have always known that there was someone or something out there helping me and protecting me although it didn’t become apparent until my 20′s. Then in my 40′s, when I found the way of the Buddists and other peace inspired beliefs and ways of life, I realized just how important the “give and you shall recieve” Mantra was. I had come to realized that it wasn’t important what others did for you, but what you did for others. So I did my best to help others when ever possible, to be a shoulder when they needed one as well as a friend or a smile for a stranger to possibly brighten their day.
What came to me was manifested in many ways, so that I was shown that if I continued what I was doing for others I would never have to worry about myself or my children.
Then in July of this year, my ex-husband, who had throughout the years had been a friend to me, found that his cancer had come back for the 3rd time in 2 years. So every weekend the boys and I would drive the 2 hours to visit, they would stay and I would come back to pick them up, and sometimes do grocery shopping for him. Meanwhile I had asked him to make me his health care proxy so I could deal with the Dr’s for him. To make a long story short, the beginning of August he started the radiation (it was found in his spine) so I let our younger son (who’s 15) stay with him for the week to help him out. It turned out to be Kerry’s last week. That Friday my son called me to say that his dad was being taken to the hospital again. My other son and I rushed up and I spoke with the Dr’s and found out that his body was shutting down. I called Kerry’s brother and sister to come up (they lived 6 hours away) and called a priest (he was Catholic) to administer the last rites. He passed on that Sunday. It still hurts when I think about it but this story isn’t about about what I did…I did that with out even giving it a second thought. This story is about what Kerry’s friends did for us, during that last weekend and beyond. I had never met them before but most of them knew the boys. But they were such wonderful support for me, helping me take care of the details that I could never thank them enough. Then they had a memorial service for Kerry…a tribute to his friendship to them so to speak. Now the boys and I had just moved to a new area, after leaving an alcholic husband, and we were broke, I couldn’t even afford to buy my kids the things they needed to start their new schools. Anyway, these friends of Kerry’s took up a collection at the dinner and handed me almost $1000.00 to use however we needed it since they knew (from Kerry) that we were starting over. As we counted the money I cried. I had experienced Kindness in my life, but nothing to this extent. They told me that they all appreciated the way I took care of Kerry even after we had been divorced 10 years. This is their story and their act of kindness that will be blessed for years to come.



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Andrea

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:52 pm


I babysit two young boys and a couple of weeks ago their dog died. The older child, who grew up with the dog was very distraught when his pet passed away. This child also loves animals and wants to be a vet. Last night I was talking to his mother and this six year old child started a collection drive at his school to collect supplies for a local animal shelter. He created his own fliers, spoke to the principal at his school (by himself), spoke to his teachers and his little brother’s classes as well. He did this all out of the love in his heart for animals; his mother made sure that this was his project and she did not take it over but let him lead this effort. To see such passion and drive come from someone so young, who is just following his heart is awesome. I think we all have the potential to start and finish projects like these in our communities and he is an inspiration. This is an act of kindness, grown out of grief and benefitting those who cannot speak for themselves (the animals) and also the people who donate because they feel that they are a part of the project too.
Follow your heart!



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brian zarb

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:53 pm


When i was 17 years old i left my home under very abusive conditions ( my father was physically and emotionally abusive to my mom and myself, i grant him that he did not know any better, being raised in a very abusive houehold himself). My father died 12 years ago with my forgivness, but at the time i had to leave HIS house! My grandmother who had nothing to speak of except a 1 bedroom apt. took me in , and gave up her bed ,to sleep on her couch (although i objected she insisted), she gave up most of her food for me (although again i objected and she insisted). When i found a job she would take no money for food or to help with her rent! She was always my second mom , and she treated me with the most compassion of anyone in my life , except for my real mom!She lived to the age of 99, had heart prblems , broke her hip, and had bone marrow cancer, and beat them all to wind up dying of simply old age peaceful and calm. She always would tell me to never fear death as that is one of the most beautiful things that could happen to a soul. She never complained about ANYTHING , pain or otherwise, but played the lottery ever week so that if she won , she could give ALL her winnings to us her family (children and grandchildren). She truely was a teacher, and ALWAYS thought of others before herself. HER LIFE was a ACT of KINDNESS to us all, family, friends and aquaintences, but especially to me, for without her who knows what would have become of me!!! Thank You , In Peace Brian.



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Nina

posted October 7, 2007 at 12:56 pm


My first husband and I were in a flood that ruined everything we had. Our neighbors parents took us in and fed us and clothed us for several weeks. We had never met them before this happened. They were truly angels on earth!



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denny dyroff

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:19 pm


I’m friends with many of the Amish community in Pennsylvania and spent time talking with them after a gunman murdered a number of their children in a schoolroom last year. It’s totally amazing to see their ability to immediately find kindness and forgiveness in their hearts — even as far as reaching out to the gunman’s widow to help her financially because she no longer had a husband to support her family.
Forget the bumper stickers that read “What would Jesus do?”. Instead, give me a bumper sticker that reads “What would the Amish do?”



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brandon rounds

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:20 pm


the most profound act of kindness I have ever experienced was when my uncle carl had a very bad stroke, he lost most of his cognitive abilitties. my auntie had no way to pay for their mortgage or any of the things my uncle Carl could no longer support her with.
we all live in a small comunity in northern bc called fort st. John
me and my cusin set up a benifit dance at the local hall we invited 66 people for 5:00 the next day. the next day at the dance 200 people
came and the donations for my uncle reached 280,000 thousand dollars from people he hardly new, those people are the kind and generous
and every year we have had another to help pay for his recovery and these people still rock!!!!
thanks friends of fort st.john



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Tracey Sullivan

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:21 pm


About 6 years ago I decided to enter a rehab. clinic for Alcohol. When I came out of my stay I was well. But something was missing. I found myself writing my thoughts down hoping that would help. It did a little, but still something was missing. One day I was walking around Barnes and Noble (are local book store) and was drawn to your books. It was as if something was pulling me in that direction. I bought my first book “How to practice the way to a meaningful life. I was hooked. It was as if this was what I was missing in my life, an understanding of compassion towards myself and to others. I have since bought several other books. I especially enjoyed the “Happiness” book. When I read that I felt a great joy and understanding on how we are all connected. It made perfect sense. Even If I don’t win this contest I can honestly say I have already won! I am happy and I am at peace with myself. Thank you.
Tracey



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Susan Perry

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:23 pm


While serving on the board for Save, Save against a Violent environment, I delivered turkeys and all
the trimmings for the 20 mothers and their childen at a undisclosed safe house. I had my six year old
daughter with me for the drop off. Upon reaching the safe house, I was told of two additional families
had arrived overnight. I saw the women sitting at the table in the kitchen and a girl of about my daughter’s
age hugging the door jam. I informed the administrator that I would return to Safeway to purchase
additional supplies and naturally turned to my daughter and informed her of one more trip until
I could get her lunch. She turned and looked at me and said, “Mom”, I will stay here and play with
the little girl-then she will feel safe. I said are you sure-I will be leaving you alone for about an
hour. She said I’m fine. She turned and approached the scared girl and they walked down the
hall into the living room of the safe house. I have raised my daughter with Buddhist beliefs and yet
she was a Seventh Adventist until her late teenage years. I believe her belief in God and his existence
gave her the courage and willingness to extend herself-pure kindness that day. The image of that
little girl who is now in her 20′s still visits me whenever she calls. And I will not forget the smiling
face and wave from her new friend upon our departure.



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Irene

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:24 pm


I was in NYC with a friend outside a club dressed in torn jeans and an old leather jacket. She asked me if I wanted to go to a diner with her, and I replied I had no money for food. A homeless man standing behind us tapped me on the shoulder and gave me the bagel he’d been eating…who knows if that was all he’d have to eat for the next day…I thanked him and returned it. Compassion knows no boundaries!



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Ron

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:37 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed was back in 1987. It was the early days of AIDS/HIV and no one wanted to face the fact that it was killing a lot of men here in New York. Knowing I was Gay and realizing that almost everyone I knew that was turned out to be HIV+. Back in those days it was not only a death sentence but it carried the stigma of being a Gay disease and no one wanted to be near anyone who was infected. I didn’t know what to do but I had to see a doctor and face the possibility that I might be HIV+. After the diagnosis, I was devastated and in shock. Facing death was bad enough but to have to die in a way that kept everyone in fear of coming close and being supportive was too much to bear.
I finally found a Doctor who turned out to be the most compassionate person I have ever met. After my first appointment and treatment visit he gave me a hug and for the first time I broke down and cried. He was not afraid to touch me and his hug just reached the depth of my heart. He has since kept me alive by seeing that I had whatever medications that were available and because of him I was involved in most of the early trials which led up to the current medication treatments. I will never forget him for that hug it makes me cry just to think of how much it meant to me.
May he be reborn into the highest heaven.
Ron



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Josephine Pizzino

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:38 pm


Growing up in a strict Catholic family, I loved the teachings of Jesus. I became very active in the youth organization, CYO but as I grew older I was concerned that our sermons were about fear of sin, the devil or raising more money for the church. This wasn’t what Jesus taught, but questioning the nuns and priests just got me into trouble.
I wanted to practice ministering to the needy and overcoming fear and separateness. This was the mid 60s, and watching civil rights demonstrators being attacked by dogs and fire hoses traumatized me. One priest understood my concerns and guided me to question more, not less. He sent me to retreats where I saw both tremendous poverty and wealth. The Catholic church wasn’t using it’s power most effectively. I became disenfranchised and turned to this priest for guidance. Father Keltzy didn’t reprimand me or tell me to stop questioning. He explained that the church itself is just an organization made of men. If I really wanted to help people, I must find my own path, even if it meant leaving the church.
I was only 14 and his kind advice gave me confidence to believe in what I saw and heard, not what I was told. Since then I have been a truth seeker as well as an activist. Although I am not a “joiner,” I am proud of the things I have done to create equality and justice. I will always keep Father Keltzy in my heart.



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Vernita

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:40 pm


Once I was going with a group of my friends from college to another college for their Alumni weekend. On the way there we had a flat tire on a very dark and lonely road. The bearing had come out of our tire and we were miles away from anything. We couldn’t even see any lights of in any distance. And this was before cell phones so we had to rely on passersby or wait until daylight to see where to go. Out of nowhere a car came up with one lonely man in it – he pulled over to help us. Not only did he take us to the next town but he paid for our car to be towed to the town, paid for our tire and got us a hotel room to stay in until our car was fixed. And then he was gone. I can’t tell you how scared we were. 4 black students in the middle of the night in the middle of Kentucky. One lone white angel had been sent to help us and soothe us so that we may continue on our journey. I will always remember that day!



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Kelly

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:45 pm


I was in a pretty bad car accident back in January of this year. A car crossed out of his lane and hit my car almost head on. To this day, I have no memory of the impact (which is good because if I DID remember, I might never drive again). At the hospital, while I was lying in bed, I was trying to explain to my mother what had happened. All i kept telling her was “i remember a lady in a pink, striped sweater, and she stayed with me by my car”. She said “well there is nobody here like that. You must be mistaken.” A few minutes later, I asked her to go into my purse to get me some lip balm or my cell phone, I can’t quite remember. Tucked into my pocket calendar, written on a piece of paper was the name Barbara P——n with a phone number. My mom dialed the number and reached the woman on the other end. She was the lady in the pink striped sweater who, while others may have left the scene, stayed by my side until the paramedics came. I was so disoriented at the time, the dust from the airbags made me think my car was on fire and I was frantically trying to free myself from the car. Barbara made sure to keep me calm and seated until the ambulance arrived to take me to the hospital. Her kindness at that moment kept me from further injuring myself, and I will always remember her for that.



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Willaim F. Fritsch

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:45 pm


While I was going through the experience of September 11th in my office near the Twin Towers, I received calls from all around the world from friends and business collegues expressing their concern and
solidarity with me and all who were threatened by the violence of this act. I felt as if the world was comming to an end and my life as well . The outpouring of love and concern for me and for all who were caught up in this moment affected me in a most profound way. The kindness and concern of family and friends and strangers gave me a sense of the world coming togther at the moment it seemed to be falling apart . I became aware of the presence of love and compassion in the midst of disaster. I am less fearfull and more hopefull as a result of this experience.



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George Weller

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:47 pm


My work is with people with developmental disabilities. They share a diagnosis of mental retardation, but their hearts are full of spontanenous charity and compassion. Two particular incidents of kindness are not uncommon to see in my field, however to witness a severely disabled person making an effort to help one of their peers, is for me the greatest and most profound joy anyone can experience. There was a Downs Syndrome lady who would routinely gather the belongings, such as a hat, lunch box, and coat, for a young man in a wheel chair. She would put these items on his tray, and make him ready to go to his bus. She knew the value of helping another human being, and recognized his need. Another occasion was when I brought my young daughter, age 5, to meet my guys. One man, age 51, riddled with arthritis, and filled with pain simply to walk across the room, got up to greet my daughter with a smile and a warm handshake. His efforts to make my daughter feel welcome brought tears to my eyes. People with challenges that they overcome joyfully are inspirational to me and I see it nearly every day. George Weller, Medicaid Service Coordinator, Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island



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antonino dipiazza

posted October 7, 2007 at 1:48 pm


There is allways kindness in the world.Look for it and you shall see it,feel it and smile.A gentle smile has brought us here.
When I was a boy I was riding a bicycle when suddenly a gust of wind blew a baby carriage into the path of a tractor trailor.I jumped off my bike and picked up the carriage,A baby was in it and the mother was inside the pharmacy.I know this because I stood there and saw her come out and gently pushed the carriage to her destination.I did not say a word and got on my bike and rode home.



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Patricia

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:01 pm


I was recovering from a terrible bout of depression and had no confidence in my ability to thrive, make friends, or even be in the company of others. I attended a conference with a Unitarian Universalist congregation at a beach resort. Someone who I had just recently met saw me walking by and invited me to join the group of women chatting. I shook my head and was about to walk away when the woman asked me to please join and told me that she liked me and wanted me to be among them. That was a profound moment for me. I was astonished that someone would say that to me. It was a turning point. I did join the woman’s group, became fast friends with many women in the congregation, and progressed so well out of my depression that I am now attending school to become a nuclear medical technician at the age of 55. It was the act of kindness and love by that woman that turned my life around.



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Geraldine S. Shifflet

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:02 pm


“What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?”
I have a friend that grew up in poverty, that is, of course, relevent to the poverty of USA, not the intense poverty of other countries. My great friend Pam, who rarely had $10.00 in her purse at any time, would take walks around out town where the homeless, hungry, transient people would gather, and, in the darkness of night, so not to be seen or shame the poor, would leave stacks of coins and sandwiches for these “forgotten” members of our society…the unwashed, the mentally ill, the drug addicts, the down and out, the fathers and mothers and children…and I had the deep pleasure of silently walking with her as she did these most noble, beautiful deeds.



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EMH

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:08 pm


We had been rattling along for hours across bumpy dirt roads, and our driver must have been tired. In fact, it was all we could do to keep awake and sane in the baking heat of monsoon season in India, and the perpetual drone of the Hindi music echoed the monotony of the long car ride.
Our driver was a quiet Sikh guy, no more than 28, and silently endured our requests, compaints, and the general tedium of escorting us through our fieldwork assignment of several days. After a while, we
hardly noticed him. Our employer had paid him, probably not very much, and we had no idea really where he slept or ate, just that he never joined us.
After a few days of this, I noticed that one colleague in our group was heading out to the jeep just before we sat down for dinner in our hotel. I noticed some money in his hand. Asking him where he was going, he said he was just trying to get our driver some dinner. I actually tried to stop him, saying he shouldn’t be spending his own money but the company should be paying. But he just shrugged
and went out. I then began to notice that my colleague would secretly buy him dinner, or give him portions of his own food while we were on the road in such a way that no one else would notice.
One night we had settled into bed in utter exhaustion after a trying day of driving in 110-degree heat. But this colleague -by now, friend- was not in his bed. I went to look for him, and saw that he was talking to the driver. He wanted to find a way to sneak him into our big dorm room so he wouldn’t have to sleep in the car. When I mentioned this to our other colleagues, they were reluctant to have this “stranger” sleep in our room, or that he would take up space and disrupt their comfort. Later in the night, my friend found him someplace else inside the building to stay.
These may seem like small acts, but each time I was humbled to realize that this friend was constantly thinking of others and their welfare rather than his own, while the rest of us were busy feeling sorry for ourselves in the tough conditions. There was no desire for anyone to notice or reward him for these actions. It was more out of a sense of vigilance, a steady awareness of the conditions and sufferings of others that was so inspiring I began to pay attention, and even alter my own behavior.
Perhaps true kindness is a form of stewardship, a sense of responsibility for others. In my economics class, we learned that it’s difficult to solve the “free-rider” problem in pubic administration -people often do not take into account the social impact of their actions but rather try to benefit from the rest of the group, and as a result everyone suffers a bit more. This colleague – friend – showed me that true compassion is actually a form of awareness.



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robert alexander flores

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:20 pm


i lost my older & oldest brother 2 years ago in a drowning accident.
my psychology is ever-greatful to the man and spirit who is John Edward.
With his stamina and support – i have evolved into a free-r spirit and i love my brother even more than ever now.
Thank-you, J. Edward.
-Robert Alexander Flores



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Anonymous

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:24 pm


the most profound act of kindness that i have ever received was from my mother. it took place about 10 years ago. we had had a difficult relationship all through my adolescence. she was very critical of me and would comment that i reminded her of her mother, which i knew was a problem because they did not get on at all. i was a typical young girl filled with ideas and emotions and fears and a need for adventure, but i always felt so hurt because my mother just couldn’t see who i was. it created a lot of resentment that i needed to work out and did so with the help of a therapist in my 20′s. i was able to stop struggling with the relationship so much once my children were born as the focus changed to raising them and not on the past. i let it go and had a lot to share with my mom in family life; slowly we became closer. the past did not matter as i cherished our time together and our conversations.
then, one day out of the blue, in a conversation, my mother suddenly said, “you know everything i thought i knew about you in the past was absolutely wrong. i don’t know what i was thinking!”.
i was shocked to hear those words coming from her, and even though i told her i completely understood and that i had let go of the hurt years before, i really could never express how much i appreciated her incredible act of kindness toward me in the form of this “amends” and now we could both really put the issue to rest, once and for all.
it was, for me a complete healing. a few months later my mother died, suddenly, of a cerebral hemorrage. it was the beginning of a huge change in my life toward compassionate living.
karen g october 7, 2007



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Joshua Eaton

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:32 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have ever received is the kindness of my lamas, Ven. Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche and Ven. Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal Rinpoche.

Two summers ago I did work-study at Rinpoches’ retreat center in upstate New York, Pema Samye Ling. I thought I would be cataloging the temple’s library. I ended up helping dig a ditch to lay conduit for outdoor lighting and helping to repaint the temple.

I have always had an aversion to both being outdoors and doing manual labor. So, I was less that thrilled about the combination. One morning was the worst, though. I woke up with a scratchy throat, and it was a cool, misty, damp morning. Driving a pickax through Catskills slate was the last thing I wanted to do; but, it had to be done. I was miserable the entire morning, and made sure that the two other guys I was working with knew it—and one was a monk! I was really being ridiculous.

We managed to make it to lunch, with me complaining the entire time. After lunch, however, the weather began to clear and open up into a beautiful, sunny afternoon. Then, out of nowhere, Khenchen Palden and Khenpo Tsewang appeared with…a picnic! They figured that we might like a break, especially since it was such a beautiful day. It was a wonderful teaching, slicing through all of my bitching and moaning and self-importance. And it was incredibly touching, to have our lamas, for whom we do so very little and who do so much for us, think of us in this way. The afternoon ended with everyone at the center enjoying sweet Bhutanese rice and butter tea on the grass while Khenpo Tsewang chatted with us and Khenchen Palden showed us all of the medicinal flowers.

The teachings say that the only difference between the Buddha and one’s lama is the kindness the lams shows by being present in person. His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche called this “unrepayable kindness.” I have definitely experience this kindness first-hand with my own precious teachers.



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Ben Nagel

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:34 pm


Recently I had a bad reaction to a prescription drug prescribed to me for pain. It hit me while out with dog a the park. I passed out, falling to ground. Some one there called the police. In the mean time a stranger saw me, while driving by and parked. Came up to see If he could assist me. Then the police arrived. This gentle man that I have never met told the police I was his friend and that He would see that I get home. He brought me home. All that I know is his first name. Thank you stranger for your act of kindness and love. You brought light into this world.



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Namaste

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:34 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have received in this lifetime was from the great Goddess above, embodied in the births of my two wonderful sons. Each and every day I am able to experience true gratitude and put a positive, optimistic spin on daily life because of this tremendous gift.



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eva gord

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:41 pm


In 1956 I was a nine year old girl escaping from Communist Hungary with my mother, father and five year old brother. We walked most of the night to the border and hid in a muddy ditch to escape the patrol guards and dogs. When we made it across the barbed wire fence and a Red Cross truck was waiting for us on the Austrian border; they took us to a sympathetic farmer’s house. The farmer and his family were poor, but their house was clean and orderly and we ate the oranges that the Red Cross gave us.
The farmer had a daughte about my age and her eyes were fixed on my boots…..the soles of my boots had come off in the struggle coming over the barbed wire fence and were flapping and full of mud. I was not only humiliated, but really uncomfortable.
She took off her boots and gave them to me, along with a clean pair of socks. My mother protested that we could not take the boots, but her parents smiled and insisted. They miracolously fit, and I wore them
all the way to England. I knew that there were her only boots, and yet she gave them with a big smile, glad to be of help.
I will never forget that little girl for her true compassion and kindness.



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Megan McKenzie

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:42 pm


The most profound and life changing act of kindheartedness bestowed upon me occurred this summer when a stranger befriended me in my time of need. Being across the country, more than 3,000 miles from home, and away from everything and everyone I knew; I felt like I could have ended up on the streets trying to find a way to survive. When interviewing for a job to simply be able to put food in my stomach and gas in my car, I met the kindest man I have ever come across in my lifetime. He not only offered me a job, but he opened his home to me and offered me refuge from the chaos that I could have been exposed to if I had ended up living on the streets. His kindness reminded me that everything in life happens for a reason, and just spending one weekend with him changed the entire course of my life. He reinforced my sense of self confidence by recognizing my talents and individual gifts that I have to offer the world. Instead of turning his head the other way, this man acknowledged that we are all interconnected, and should extend love and kindness to all we encounter. This man never hesitated to help me, opening his home as well as his heart to me. Through this chance encounter, I was rescued and my sense of purpose renewed. He inspired me to continue forging ahead with my goals and utilize my gift of writing to help others in the world. He offered support to help publish my books and spread my message to the world. One simple act of kindness brought light into my then darkened world, and I now see endless opportunities unfolding in front of my eyes. More than extending his kindness to me, this man extends his helping hand to all he encounters in this world. This man does not have a selfish fiber in his being; I watched him write a personal check for an employee experiencing financial stress due to the spouse’s loss of employment, simply so the family could have food on the table. Having the chance to meet this man not only restored my sense of purpose, but also reminded me of my duty to help others. This man showed me how one act of kindness can change the future, and that one person can make a difference. With his one act of kindness, this man initiated a cascade of events that will hopefully lead me to be able to help others. In my time in his home, I had the blessing of attending a speech in Miami given by the Oracle, and I felt fate had brought me to that event. By writing of compassion and appreciating diversity, I hope to be the beginning of the change I wish to see in the world around me. I feel inspired to utilize my gift of writing to empower others and bridge gaps between cultures, ethnicities, borders, and socioeconomic backgrounds. This man reminded me that the world needs a powerful voice to lead and educate the masses, and inspired me to use my unique gifts to become a leading voice in the quest to save the world; when he could have just looked the other way!



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Carol R

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:50 pm


My greatest gift and my gratitude goes to the Goddess for my wonderful
daughter. She was a miracle.. I waited until I was older to conceive and have her and after 22 hours of labor finally the Dr. on my orders lol delivered her C-Section. My parents later told me she was given the smallest oxygen mask and tank they had ever seen. I believe that she was having an effect from the drugs I was given but more so that she was delivered after a too long period of time.
She is the most important thing in the world to me and although she is almost 20 yrs old yes I cannot believe it, it seems like yesterday that she was born.
I suffer from CFS, Fibromyalgia, and Rheumotoid Arthritis, but each day of my daughters life I did everything possible to be with her and experience life thru her eyes. She was a dancer and we would go to the competitions only once did I have to miss one of them due to illness. I pushed and still push myself everyday to do and be the best person I can be.
I am also grateful for my dogs who keep me company have unconditional love for me and get me thru many hard days.
If I could meet the Dahli Lama that would be a changing point
for me in my life.. My life has been very stressful the last year more so than usual. My Dad had a very bad accident he is almost 90 and the accident occurred on my birthday. I took care of my mom along with everything else I had to do in my life making sure my daughter was ok and my dogs. Things have been very bad since I lost a large amount of income the end of last year. In any event, I get up everyday and pray and pray when ever I need too. I believe there is a higher power and I also believe our paths are laid out for us when we are born. So, I am hoping to have a long happy life and see my daughter happy and married with children.. I have always said:”If my daughter is ok and happy, than so am I” OH BTW I neglected to say that I raised her alone :)
and think I did a good job, or at least the best job I could do..
Sincerely
CR



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kindra hadley

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:53 pm


i have 3 children ~ 2 girls and a boy (ages 9,6,3 respectively). my middle daughter (6 yr.old) has Down Syndrome and a unilateral hearing loss – she only hears out of her left ear.
My 9 year old daughter came to me about 6 months ago and said “mommy, i am worried about Claire’s “good ear”. What if she loses her hearing in that one too? I really think we need to start learning more sign language so we can teach it to her now, just in case she loses her hearing in her good ear.” Thus, she has been getting sign language videos from the library, learning from them, and teaching them to her sister ever since. all on her own, in her own time…
At 9 years old, in today’s world, i found this so incredibly touching that my daughter would be so connected with the realities of another, especially to the degree that she is willing to take it upon herself to learn / teach something solely for the benefit of that other person.



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Tequila

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:58 pm


I met the Dali Lama in the 80′s in Beverly Hills thanks to a friend. I will never forget the infectous joy he owns and shares.
Even if I won I could not afford to get to new York. I will listen very hard with my heart.
Tequila



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Charles Miller

posted October 7, 2007 at 2:59 pm


I am now past the half century mark and my story is “ancient history” yet still one that I carry with me to this day.
When I was in my late teens, I was part of the then current rampant drug-culture in a very big way, making life miserable for anyone who came in contact with me. Eventually, my parents were forced to call the police because I had become a danger to them and to myself as well. Upon over-hearing the conversation with the police, I snuck out the back door with a nothing more than the clothes on my back and a few dollars with which to buy a ticket to my grandparents’ house in New York City.
They were warned that I might be heading there and to turn me away should such be the case. Instead, when I knocked on the door and they let me in, knowing full well what they might be getting themselves into. Indeed, I believe I was “high” upon my arrival. Yet, they gave me a room to sleep in and went to bed.
Subsequently, over the course of the days and weeks ahead, I continued to get high and remained verbally abusive as ever, even to my saviors, who in turn, patiently listened to my relentless cursing and self-praise, even as they watched me continue on my downward spiral. It seemed like the more I would dish out, the more patient they became.
Short of writing a novel-length post here, suffice it say, their seeminly eternal patience taught me a lesson regarding kindness. Indeed, I look back on this event as life-changing experience, and perhaps my first exposure to genuine Boddichitta, albeit not presented directly as such. I observed these two old people with unconditional love in their hearts put up with relentless obscenities, and behavior that was potentially downright life-threatening to their own well-being, and wondered, how can they tolerate somebody like me?
That was the turning-point in my life. Quite literally, while not pulling me out of a flaming car, they saved my life. How? With patience. To this day, whenever a harsh word or thought comes into my head, I remember my grandparents.
Recently, a friend of my son was in need of a place to stay after a similar encounter with his parents. With thoughts of what had happened to me 30 years ago, I thought it was time to pay back my grandparents the only way I could and invited him to stay with us. Four months later, this young man joined the Job Corp and has became a functioning member of society.
I would love to see the Dalai Lama, but whether I do or not, I hope all those who are reading this now will remember this story, and when confronted with a difficult situation regarding a fellow human being, will use their kindness and patience and extend a helping hand to someone no matter how deluded they seem to be.
Love!



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Brett Breitwieser (a.k.a Jangchup Nagtsel)

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:06 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have experienced is listening to the teachings of the Dalai Lama (on the Heart of Wisdom Sutra) several years ago, due to the kindness of one of the sponsors (and quite without any effort or merit on my part) and being released from the burden of chasing after teachers and teachings… if I should win the tickets to the teachings, please give them to a deserving student, with my love.



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Michael

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:13 pm


the single most profound act of kindness i have ever witnessed is when i saw a homeless man asleep in a doorway and many many people paseed him by. he was probably in a drunken stuper and people commented how disgusting it was to see a person passed out drunk in a doorway. no one stopped to offer help until another obviously homeless man walked by and noticed the man passed out in the doorway. the second man stopped, bent over and tried to wake the sleeping man. after much time he wrapped his arms around the drunken man, hoisted him up and walked toward a homeless shelter and i heard him saying something like “we’ve goota go before the cops come”. no one else would bend to the gutter top help this man. i learned on that day what a real “saint” looks like.



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M.J.Massey

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:14 pm


Forgiving myself,over and over and over.



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Kathryn CArlson

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:18 pm


The most kind people I have met, were at the Cabrini Hospice in NYC., who cared for my Mother, as she lay dying with Alzeheimers disease. the nurses worked around the clock, never complained as they cleaned her body, and changed the sheets. They were like angels, and only asked ” Do you think she is in pain?” I said I didn’t know, since she no longer talked or took in fluids or food. She lingered in the hospice for 11 days, without food and water. I cried each time I went there, told her I loved her, then left in a few minutes. My sister stayed longer, and she passed, and we buried her next to my Dad. I will always be grateful for the kindness of the Nurses, who care for the terminally ill people, who have suffered in their lives.Love is the greatest good, and helping other people less fortunate than ourselves. Sincerely, Kathryn



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Hanna Wyszynska

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:25 pm


World War2 started on September1,1939. I was born on September 22,1939 in Warsaw,Poland in a basement of a building that had just been bombed and was on fire. All the inhabitants fled to the basement just as my mother went into labor. No doctor,no nurse,no bed and no medication. A man dressed in old fashioned garb came over to my mother as she lay helpless and scared.No one had ever seen him before. He asked my mother who her father was and when she told him his name, he gently said that she and her child(me) would survive the war and then he disappeared.Decades later, my mother found out that this gentle man was the most revered Rabbi and was also considered to be a saint in Judaism. He advocated random “acts of goodness and kindness” all of his life.To this day, his photo hangs in many Jewish homes.His name is Rabbi Schneerson and he is considered to be a savior for the Jewish people.He died a long time ago in New York. So, by proxy, I was given the gift of kindness which led to the gift of life.His encouragement to my mother, gave her hope. She placed me in a convent when I was 2 1/2
and then is how I survived and my mother was rescued from the Warsaw Ghetto by a non Jewish man who had never met her before. This is the most incredible act of kindness that any human can bestow on another.This story is too long to write now but I would be so happy to let someone know about this miraculous act.This man has been documented in Jerusalem’s Yad Vashem as a “Righteous Gentile” and I and one of my daughters were there to be with this remarkable man. He risked his life and the lives of his wife and children to save my mother.He is responsible for my mother’s legacy and mine.One of the kindest men who ever lived. So, I have been the beneficiary of not only one act of kindness, but two.I have been very fortunate.



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luke

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:34 pm


my father giving up his time and ideals for his wife, just to keep the peace for all of us.



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Karen

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:34 pm


Last summer, I was homeless due to a severe bout of depression. I was scheduled to come to Las Cruces, NM for treatment and housing, but the opening was three weeks away. I had no where to go except a shelter. Now, if you have never had the unfortunate need to stay at a homeless shelter, they are none too nice and some of the people are quite belligerent. (I did need to spend one night at the shelter in Albuquerque.) For a middle class woman who had spent her life avoiding this, it was devastasting. I went back to the hospital, but I was not “sick” enough to be admitted. So, I was told about a crisis unit that would house me for three days. That was better than nothing. While there, I met a man who invited me to stay with his family. He and his wife were absolutely wonderful. They allowed me to stay in their cottage, and they fed me for 2 weeks. They asked for nothing in return.
This is such a unusual thing for people to do these days. To take a total stranger into their home, not knowing if I would steal or ransack their home or the cottage. They did though with completely open hearts. I will forever be grateful to them. Namaste.



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BJ Haraughty

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:35 pm


The greatest act of kindness I have ever recieved is the smiles presented to me by passerbys. Especially when those smiles are presented with warm and caring eyes. A warm, strong hug is always nice too.



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emily

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:35 pm


when i was in NY some random woman came up to a street sweeper to thank her for keeping the city so beautiful.



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Karen

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:40 pm


Kathryn, It is a small world. I am originally from NYC and my cousin, Cheryl, was one of the administrative nurses at Cabrini Hospice for many years. I am sure you must have run into her. If not, well, it is still a small world. Karen



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J. Holmes

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:40 pm


As a Ride Coach for the California AIDS Ride, it was my job to encourage registrants to train for the 560 mile bike ride, and raise $2500 for AIDS service organizations. I had ridden the AIDS Ride 3 times when I got the job, and I found the position incredibly fulfilling. One week before the ride, I called a rider named Kevin to see if he was ready to ride. He answered the phone in tears, his partner of 12 years had died of AIDS 2 days before. He said he didn’t know if he could do the ride, he was so distraught. I talked to him about his grief, his partner’s life, and suggested that riding his bike from San Francisco to Los Angeles might be healing for him, and a wonderful way to memorialize his partner. He sobbed and said said he would think about it, but he had so much to do, he wasn’t sure he could manage it logistically, no less emotionally.
On night 6 of the ride we camped in Ventura, and as I was coming out of the communications trailer, Kevin walked up in tears.
“I just had to find you, and thank you so much for encouraging me to come to the ride.” He told me that at sunset he and his friends stood at the beach in Santa Barbara, and as the sun went down, they spread some of his partner’s ashes into the waves. They looked out into the ocean and at that moment a pod of dolphins started leaping out of the waves, and he said he felt the palpable presence of God, his partner and the love of the universe.
By this time we were both crying, and I thanked him for coming to tell me, that I was so glad that he had come and it had helped in his grief. It was an act of kindness that helped us all, I did my job in encouraging him, but it was his kindness to come and find me, in a camp of thousands of people, to let me know that I said a few words that had helped him – that is what made the experience for all of us complete. We hugged and said goodbye, and I never saw him again, but I will always remember the rider, his partner and the way our small efforts can lead to profound gifts of healing.



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Joan

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:47 pm


When my mother realized she could no longer care for or protect my siblings and me and placed us in an orphanage.



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Eva

posted October 7, 2007 at 3:50 pm


My grandmother (for whom I was named) died before I was born, but she has always been an example for me of kindness and compassion, just via the stories my family would tell about her. One of many small examples that has always helped me explain the kind of woman she was…
My mother’s family was relatively well off in their tiny Southern town, but of course they knew people who were dirt poor, who didn’t have shoes to wear in the summertime. My grandmother never considered anyone beneath her, and she would have the poorest families in town over for dinner and social visits just like anybody else. When people who couldn’t afford shoes would come to visit, my grandmother would make sure every single member of her own family was barefoot and there weren’t any shoes lying around… she wouldn’t tolerate a guest feeling humbled or inferior or embarrassed in her home.
Sometimes it’s the very smallest gesture that can be the most kind… and it’s no wonder that although she died more than thirty years ago, people still remember such a thoughtful and good-hearted lady so fondly. I hope I can live up to her name.



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mgkelly

posted October 7, 2007 at 4:00 pm


When I was young and questioning, an eigth grade lit teacher wrote this to me:
“Creator— Share your beauty with all… for beauty is infinite”
It was a positive affirmation that I have returned to many times over my life.



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jennie m

posted October 7, 2007 at 4:06 pm


I think the most profound act of kindness that I have ever witnessed has to be the many selfless caregivers of the handicapped or ill. I particularly remember a young mother who I would see dropping off her son at the same day-care center where I took my son. Though she usually looked so tired, she always had the sweetest words for her boy, as she lifted him into his wheelchair from the car. From what I later learned of her, she had made sure her son participated in as normal a life as possible, despite his Cerebral Palsy, keeping him in public school while she worked as a single mother.
Caregivers like her who sacrifice themselves and their own dreams seem the epitome of kindness. And to think many nurses, hospice workers, and doctors give their all for strangers! This seems like the ultimate act of kindness, to me!



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Paula Gray

posted October 7, 2007 at 4:13 pm


My grandmother Hilda Johnson worked in a laundry,
sorting dry cleaning and attaching tags. I was a small
child and would sit behind her (the laundry never knew)
as we could not afford day care…. she found a sum of
money in the pocket of a seaman’s jacket, marked it,
took it to the office, and in a few days received a
monetary reward….My grandmother was supporting our entire
family at the laundry…my ailing grandfather, her three
children still at home, my mother and my siblings….
this reward was divinely sent.as we had nothing…
yet, she knew of a woman in the laundry who had less
than us and we went that day and gave her the reward!!!
As I have aged I realize that it was a totally selfless act,
that she knew she would then work harder and longer, and
yet she never hesitated……..it may seem small, but ……..



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Clara

posted October 7, 2007 at 4:17 pm


One very cold winter in Washington in 1996, my entire family lived in a house that was so old and neglected by our country (a third world country in the central of Africa), that the pipes in the house froze. We spend the entire winter heating water in pots to wash ourselves and we got to the point where there was no water because the house was too big and pipes had burst due to the fact they were too old. The pumbler asked us too much money to fix and we just did not have enough. An American couple gave us water from their heated house. We, the children spent most of our times working odd jobs, but the one person who suffered greatly was our mother who had to stay home to cook and clean. She spend the whole day and winter in the frozen house to the point one day her toes turned black. All we could do is laugh at this sad situation in America. We had heaters,but the house was old and in shambles, so the heat distribution was near nothing. This American couple (that I will never forget) allowed my mother to go their house with empty buckets to get water. We had other african diplomats living across the street from us, but they did not care about our suffering. Their country was functioning, so they never offered us to get water from their house. I remember my mother unloading the buckets of water from the trunk of the car and this allowed us to have drinking water, flush toilets, and water to wash our faces and body for a few days. My mother died of Cancer and she is now at peace, finally. I have water today as I have moved on with my life, but nothing can surpass the amount of shame I felt to have to lack water in America because my homeland was ran by a Dictactor who refused to pay the diplomats abroad. Today, I have list of painful memories and matching miracles. This miracle of water to drink, to cook and to wash myself is one that I cherish forever. I can still see the sad eyes of the woman who could not believe that we were living in such sad conditions in America. This act of kindness is what has marked me for an eternity. I hope for clean and drinkable water for all people suffering and lacking it in the world. First water, and then the road to dignity can begin. I look for the couple in my dreams when I close my eyes so that I can thank them. I thank them a millions times for allowing us to have water to wash ourselves and giving us back our dignity for a few more days.



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Gloria Muzquiz

posted October 7, 2007 at 4:25 pm


My sweet husband, Erin, had died suddenly in his sleep just days before. He was just 50 years old, a total nutbar, teaching sociology at a local college and having 11 little private piano students here in Portland, Oregon. Erin was an unbelievably gifted pianist/keyboardist/composer, with a long and successful history in the music business in California and elsewhere, in the 70′s and 80′s.
The day he took his first prescription pill for pain was on March 31, 2003. He died the next morning in his sleep, after having an allergic reaction that suppressed his breathing. That morning was April 1, 2003. April Fool’s Day.
Everyone who knew how hysterically funny he was, how generous and loving he was and how utterly supportive he was of others, especially those in pain and conflict, told me the same thing…………….he probably planned it that way ! (to depart on April Fool’s Day)
We held the memorial just five days later; I have no idea how it all came together. My shock was so total and the loss so painful, that I literally have no memory of roughly the next three weeks.
A former boss of mine – one whom I love dearly – attended the memorial and – upon learning that another memorial would be held in his home town in California soon – came up to me and asked if I was planning on attending that second service. I remember telling her that I really had no idea, as finances and who-knows-what obligations here at home might keep me here. She told me that it was very important that I attend that service, since most people who had known my husband for most of his life lived THERE. She said that I needed to meet them, hear stories about Erin’s life from those who knew him best, and to be surrounded by their support and love.
She then handed me a piece of paper.
It was a downloaded Alaska Airline schedule of flights from Oregon to California; she said I needed to pick departure and arrival flights because the ticket for me had already been purchased.
Unbelievable………………………..such love and caring!
Gloria



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jane

posted October 7, 2007 at 4:30 pm


I returned to graduate school in my 40′s. I am now working on a Masters in social work and intern at the Homeless Day Resource Center. I see so many acts of kindness on a daily basis, I couldn’t possibly choose just one.
So I thought about it and realized my nephew, who is two years younger than me, really did something profound. The apartment complex he and his family were living in had a laundry room. One of his daughters told him of a friend that had been living in the laundry room to escape an abusive household.
She was obviously quite upset, but he and his wife took her into their home. They already have 4 children of their own. After going through the legal system, they were able to adopt this 16 year old girl.
I am happy to report she graduated from high school and has already started college. Had my nephew and his family not welcomed this girl into their lives, there is no telling how things would have turned out for her.
He truly showed me what kindness and sacrifice can accomplish.



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Renae Lani Anderson

posted October 7, 2007 at 5:22 pm


Aloha your holiness my name is Renae’ Lani Anderson, I live in Hawaii and have been on Maui for almost 21 years. I’ve been married for 20 yrs. and have 2 boys 15 and 17 Makena and Kaikoa. We’ve had alot of tenants staying with us over the years. Some of them have had too friends come and stay with us being complete strangers to us but we welcome them and make time for them. One time our tenant had his friend some to our house at a time when he was gonna be leaving a few days later, and we had no idea of his alcohol problem. It was a very scary time and this visitor came for a week and hadn’t been drinking for months. But when he got here he started up again. After our tenant left for his vacation he friend stayed and we never saw him for 2 whole days, and turns out he had been drinking in the room and hiding it from us until one day I knocked on the door to find him litterally in a convulsive state. I had to risk my own life and my kids by taking him in our car 25 miles to our local hospital. When we got there they had to immediately take him into a detox treatment and he was close to losing his life. I feel that I was his life saver to this day.
Thank You for your time and listening



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Diana T. Cordova

posted October 7, 2007 at 5:23 pm


Being an only child, taking care of both my parents as they were getting older was many times overwhelming. Both my parents suffered from diabetes and it claimed my mother first. I had to take her to numerous doctors, specialists, dialysis center, etc and at the same time keep my full time job. Many times, I cried because I felt so alone and so tired all of the time.
One of the most important people in my life, my aunt Mary Frances, was always by my side giving me support. She sacrificed her time to be there for me. She helped me by going with me to doctor appointments, the dialysis center three times a week and by giving up her weekend to stay with me and my mom. My mom had gotten to the point where she could not be left alone at all. My aunt also helped me by listening to me, by giving me advice and by just being there for me. Because of her love and support, I was able to make it through a very painful and difficult time (seeing my mother slowly waste away)and I was able to be next to my mom when she took her last breath. My aunt was there also, sitting next to me.
After my mom passed away, I jumped right into taking care of my father and my aunt once again never thought twice about helping me and being there for me (even though, now, in this case, it was her brother-in-law). Once again, towards the end, when my father was very sick and the doctors and nurses told me it was just a matter of time, my aunt would stay with me many times during the nights I stayed at the hospital to be close to my father. Once again, it was exhausting, emotionally devastating and painful, and, once again, I would not have been able to get through it without my aunt. Because she stayed with my dad the night before he passed away, I was able to go home, take a shower and a very quick nap and get back to him. I felt somewhat refreshed and the last night of his life, I was with him that night when he, also, took his last breath at 4:30 A.M. My aunt’s selfless actions, selfless giving has taught me to appreciate kindness and gentleness, and to strive to give kindness and gentleness. She always gave her time, her advice, her kindness, her quiet strength without ever complaining, without ever expecting anything in return. My heart overflows with appreciation, gratitude, and love for her. She showed me what true sacrifice and giving is really all about.



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jishnu

posted October 7, 2007 at 5:24 pm


the dalai lama forgiving the chinese for invading tibet
pope john paul II forgiving his would be assasin



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Shari Buhan

posted October 7, 2007 at 5:32 pm


Forgiving others.



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Anonymous

posted October 7, 2007 at 5:39 pm


when i lived in kenya ten years ago i worked with street children. they were disgaurded largely by society and sometimes killed my gangs of angry citizens, tired of their theft and drug use. one day, i was at a bus stop and this one street girl, probably only 10 or 11, was walking up and down a bus stop begging. she was mentally retarded and everyone was nearly pushing her away. one woman hugged her. and the girl smiled and smiled and didn’t want to let her go. so kind.



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nickie

posted October 7, 2007 at 5:40 pm


when i lived in kenya ten years ago i worked with street children. they were disgaurded largely by society and sometimes killed my gangs of angry citizens, tired of their theft and drug use. one day, i was at a bus stop and this one street girl, probably only 10 or 11, was walking up and down a bus stop begging. she was mentally retarded and everyone was nearly pushing her away. one woman hugged her. and the girl smiled and smiled and didn’t want to let her go. so kind.



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Linda Klann

posted October 7, 2007 at 5:42 pm


One late winter evening, I was working as a lineman for a cable company. I was cold and just wanted to be home with my famly. I was called out on one last service call as the sun was setting, I drove towards it and what I hoped would be an easy call.
When I got there a man opened the door. He was very warm and friendly. He was home with his daughter who was not well. She was on the couch when I got there. She was so cute and happy to have the day with her Dad. I made the repair for him and he gave me a home-made tortilla filled with warm cheese! I was never so comforted in my life! “Human kindness!!?? “is what I said as he handed it to me and told me how he made his own tortillas.
This was over 20 years ago and it still makes me warm to remember this simple act.



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Linda Nataya Estrin

posted October 7, 2007 at 5:48 pm


A smile and eyes from Thomas when perhaps it is not deserved.



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Linda Leavitt

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:20 pm


I will always remember the kindness of the woman, Mrs. N, who welcomed me into her home for over a year when I was ten. During that year, my mother was hospitalized for mental illness and my father’s work required him to travel frequently for long periods. Despite her modest means and existing demands on her time – she had children of her own, cared for her invalid husband and was the family’ sole support – Mrs. N. made me feel that I was part of her family. I felt loved and safe during that year, largely because of her deep kindness.



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Michele Frisella

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:21 pm


I was a counselor for welfare recipients for 8 years in a progressive, education oriented program at a community college. The students, mostley women, developed a strong bond while attending a six-week Career and Life Planning class. Their childcare and transportation costs were covered while they attended the class. A woman with one child received about $400 a month cash grant and $200 a month foodstamps to live on. Needless to say, they lived modestly. Welfare caseworkers gave out bus tickets and bus passes conservatively. One day in class, a student exclaimed she did not have her bus pass to get home, and the caseworker would not give the student a bus ticket for the ride home as she already had a bus pass. She was quite upset. Another student, nonchalantly gave one of her coveted bus tickets to her classmate. Inevitably, the giver would at some point have to cover her own bus ride. This is one example of the support and generosity I observed of my students in this program for women on welfare. These women gave me a memorable lesson in generosity. Truly, they are the most generous people I have ever met.



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Loretta Bremer

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:22 pm


7 October 2007
Years ago, growing up in rural Nova Scotia in a Catholic family of nine (3 adults, 6 children), we used to have severe, disabling snowstorms. Not only did we not have a lot materially, we had a mother who suffered from a disease that no doctor at the time could identify (an allergy to the gluten in white flour). The agony of this unknown disease was severe diarrhea, stomach pains that made her bend over double and a weight loss she could not afford. Several times before her condition was diagnosed, she was anointed and prepared for death.
About 9 p.m. one night, during one of these storms, there was a knock at the door. There at the door were two cold, bedraggled couples about 30 miles from home. They were looking for a place to stay. We were running neither an inn nor a bed and breakfast, but my mother offered them comfort and safety from the elements. I remember her serving them tea, biscuits, cheese, and fruitcake. I can’t confirm what month it was, but it had to be close to Christmas with the fruitcake still in the crock.
Nothing was said, but we were given ‘the eye’ – you have to give up your beds (4 sisters sharing 2 double beds). Somewhere, out of nowhere, there appeared fresh linen for what was now ‘their’ beds. I have no idea where we all slept that night, but I do know two of slept on the floor in sleeping bags beside the stove with the dog in between us. Oddly enough, I remember being warm and cozy and feeling blessed by adventure. I also recall my father walking down to the end of the long country driveway through snowdrifts retrieving the battery from their car and keeping it warm behind the wood stove in the kitchen.
In the morning, our ‘guests’ arose to find the storm had abated and a hot breakfast on the table. I can still see it – fresh tea, porridge, boiled eggs and toast from homemade bread. After finishing breakfast, my father put the battery back in their car and they were on their way. A short while later, my mother received a package in the mail. It was a rosary made of red, crystal-like beads. It was from our guests. Even though I have since bought her a rosary in Ireland, she still prefers the one made of those red crystals, the one that came to her because of her kindness to strangers in a storm.
Yesterday, my mom celebrated her 80th birthday. While I couldn’t be there for it, my daughter in Halifax represented us at her tea. We showered her with a basket full of gluten-free products which she considers a ‘treat’. I consider them a necessity of life.
Today, when I see a homeless person, the first thing I ask: “Have you eaten today?” If they say no, I walk to the Safeway close by and return with a sandwich and a drink. No, I haven’t taught them how to cook, but I have squelched those stomach rumblings, if only temporarily.
Loretta



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Dyanna Cridelich

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:24 pm


Hello,
One of the most profound acts of kindness that I have ever witnessed took place on the Christmas Day that my Dad passed away.
My Dad had pancreatic cancer and as his health declined, he asked me if I could come home and give my mother a much needed rest. I quickly acquired a leave of absense from work and drove the nine hour stretch of freeway back home. How my Mom had managed to endure the endless doctor and hospital visits was amazing to me. For almost 3 years, she had taken my Father to chemo every other week. It must have been agony to watch his life energy dissipate and the quality of his life go down.
As Christmas drew near, Dad was now bedridden. As I took care of his needs, he would ask me how long it was till Christmas. Every day he would ask until it was the only thing he could say. On Christmas morning, Mom and I went into the bedroom and said, Merry Christmas Dad, It’s Christmas Day. He opened his eyes, looked at Mom, looked at me, smiled and passed away.
Throughout his entire illness everyone went out of their way to be kind, understanding and as helpful as possible. But the most profound kindness happened when the men came to take Dad to the mortuary. It was Christmas Day, my Dad was a big man and his bedroom was small. I was afraid that they would be in a hurry and not be careful. How wrong I was. They treated my Dad as if he were their own father. Everything they did was gentle, unhurried, caring, respectful. They even let his dog follow out to the ambulance so she would know where he had gone. These gentlemen had gone out of their way, even though it was Christmas Day, to make this sad occasion one that felt right and to show their respect to my Dad and his family.
Thanks for listening.



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Shelley L. Cummins

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:30 pm


The gift of a blessing… simply honoring another as God and passing it on.



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Stephanie Geffner

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:37 pm


Hi,
I have witnessed kindness over and over again from a wonderful and amazing friend. she has been sick and on bedrest for 15 years (or so). From the moment I met her(she was my first boss), she has guided me and taught me.
Even now when she is pain, she puts others needs before her own.She cares about her friends so much. She can see the bright side in everyone and everything. Her financial situation has changed over the years because of her illness and still she would give the shirt off of her back to someone with less then her. It is more than an act of kindness that I have seen. It is a women who just gets it! I am lucky to know her and call her my friend. She has such a positive outlook on life.



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CMarie

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:45 pm


A few years ago I was living in a small community where everyone seemed to know each other. There was a church and a parking lot across the street from my house. It was a rather cold autumn that year, and every couple of days I noticed a car parked in the back corner. I didn’t think too much of it since it’s close to downtown and some folks park there rather than on the street. But one morning on my way to work I noticed a woman getting out of the car, looking a bit disheveled. I didn’t recognize her but waved and smiled as I left for work. A couple days later the same thing. I noticed she was wearing the same clothes. I stopped and asked her if she needed help, she smiled and said “no, but thank you for thinking of me”, and I went on my way. That evening her car was still in the lot so I went over and asked her if she’d like to have some dinner – I told her my husband was late (he was) and I didn’t want to eat alone. After a few minutes of chatting, she joined me. After dinner she said she had to be going and drove away. She joined us for dinner a few times that autumn, but didn’t tell me much of her story but we (my husband and I) enjoyed her company. She was gone by winter, and I hoped all was well. I saw her again in the spring, this time she came up and knocked on the door. She reached in and gave me a big hug and thanked me for helping her through a rough time in her life (how could anyone NOT help?!). She drops me a note now and then, we’ve both moved on and she’s doing great, and I smile every time I think of the meals we shared.



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Doreen Higgins

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:46 pm


In my 51 years there have thankfully been many so I will tell the most recent act of kindness I have witnessed. The weekend of the 28th of Sept. (being my son’s 15th birthday) my daughter was preparing to come home. She had gone to work to pick up and cash her paycheck so she could make the three hour drive from college. When she got to work there was no check, they had inadvertantly deposited it into an account she no longer had. Well the friend that she was driving to pick up his check as well told my daughter to go to the ATM. He loaned her the money so that she could be home for her brother’s birthday. Little did we know my mother passed away on this weekend in California and it was so appreciated that we were all here together in New York thanks to my daughter’s friend Raul.



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Leslie

posted October 7, 2007 at 6:54 pm


The kindest, most generous thing I have ever witnessed was watching my son, who struggles with Asperger’s Syndrome, help a little girl who had fallen off the slide on the playground. This 7 year old girl, a peer of my son’s, was making fun of Jay, mocking him, calling him a “weirdo” and doing a little dance to mimic his walk.
Well the girl wasn’t watching where she was going and took a tumble off of the slide. Jay ran right over to her, asked if she was okay, then sat with the girl while she cried before helping her up and giving her a dandelion.
That is true compassion in the face of adversity. That is truly ‘turning another cheek’.
~LMM
POrtland,Oregon



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Nancy

posted October 7, 2007 at 7:07 pm


After church one Sunday we were asked if anyone needed prayer, so I went up to the altar because I had just suffered my second mini-stroke.
After we were done my pastor’s wife Ruth called me in the office and said because I am constantly taking caring of everyone and not taking care of myself she had wanted to send me on a woman’s retreat. I said yes that would be a blessing. So she sent me to Orlando, Florida. It was Paula White’s retreat for women. I had no money but I new GOD would provide, I had no charge cards but I still had the faith in GOD, and sure enough I was having lunch with 2 women I didn’t even know, when one of them handed me a $20.00 bill I said what is this? She said GOD had just spoke to her and told her to give the money to me and to sow a seed, she said she didn’t question GOD she only obeys. Twenty minutes later sitting by the pool, I met another women who was from NJ just like me, we starting talking and now of these women knew my situation. I went in the pool when she went to go to her room she said before you go upstairs don’t leave your towel on your chair. I said O.K. when I picked up the towel there was $30.00 under the towel.
Within an hour I had been blessed with $50.00. Those three days changed my life forever, I will never be the same, no one has ever blessed me so much. GOD keeps his promises, he will always provide and you just have to surrender and live the life he has planned for you that is one of abundance and grace. He is awesome.



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Nancy L. Bellers

posted October 7, 2007 at 7:18 pm


I was driving home from work on a Wednesday night. It is a little after 8p.m. and the rain is coming down in buckets. I am in the middle lane of a three lane highway. I am not even doing the posted speed limit of 65 and I have a semi in front of me. There is a high volume of traffic. An unknown driver, who is speeding and driving erratically attempts to pass in the right lane. They fly pass me and abruptly realize that there is a semi in the right lane that they are about to rear end. The driver jumps on their brakes, loses control of their car, and slams into the passenger side of my beautiful 2006 Mustang convertible (the first new car I’ve had in my 45 years on this planet)so hard and moving so fast, that I am pushed into the left lane and into another car. Somehow I bounced back towards the right lane and manage to get to the shoulder of the road without being hit again. The person who caused the accident manages to regain control of their car and takes off. As the driver of the car that I hit & I are waiting for the state police to arrive, another car pulls up behind my car. It was a woman who had witnessed the accident. She had gotten off the highway at the next exit, and had backtracked and found where we were. She waited with us in the pouring rain until the officer arrived. At first this idiot cop told her that they didn’t need any witnesses and told her to leave. She explained that she had witnessed the accident and that it was not my fault. Unfortunately because of the rain she didn’t get a good description of the car or the license plate. In this day and age I don’t know of many people who would have gone out of their way to get off the highway and find us, and wait in the rain (probably after a long day at work) for a state trooper who tried to get rid of her, in order to be a witness to an accident! I did not ask her name, figuring it would be on the police report. When I received a copy of the police report, it turned out that the idiot trooper had written down that an unidentified witness reported that a third car had caused the accident. I really wanted to thank her! She was my mystery angel that dark and rainy night and I will never forget her random act of kindness.



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anthony

posted October 7, 2007 at 7:25 pm


hi,
the greatest act of kindness i have ever recieved was not to fulfill my physical needs but to fulfill my mental and spiritual needs. a orthodox archbishop is helping me on my religious journey and has taught me great secrets about life, compassion, faith and friendship.
this was only one of the gifts he gave me. he gave little infomation by little, and slowly my knowledge built. when i asked him why does he slowen my spiritual growth, he simply smiled and said that there is lots one can take in but to avoid confusion and being lead in the wrong path, i give you knowledge slowly so you are not overwelmed. i care for your mental health, and to give you all this infomation at once would be an act of selfishness.
he helped my growth and chose to help me slowly rather than taking the easier option which was giving it to me all in one go and learn it myself. this has helped me become a better person and have a long lasting friendship with this archbishop.



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donna

posted October 7, 2007 at 7:26 pm


the kindest act i have ever experienced came from my friend who had cancer years ago…she was too young- in her 30′s and really going thru alot, had just adopted two children after years of trying to have her own and coping with the concept of her own mortality…
i had been going thru some other losses and a bad marriage- health issues and i never burdened her with my problems…one day we were together talking and she said to me that i never talk about what is going on in my life with her anymore…and i told her that she had enough to deal with and that my problems were small in comparison..she took my hand and said to me that this was not true and that no one’s problems are smaller than anyone else’s and that she always wanted to know what i felt and to be able to help me if she could…she said she wanted to still feel all the things to feel in life and that if she could help it would make her feel more alive and and that it helped her as well….
i never forgot what she said and have tried to adopt that as my own way as well…she made a profound imprint on me in many ways and i have missed her wisdom for about 15 years now since she lost her battle at age 40…
the idea that someone with so much pain and worry could be giving to others and actually want to help someone else made me understand what selflessness is…linda was a gem that made this world a little bit better place to live in..but her star still shines in my life and of those who knew her…



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Lynn

posted October 7, 2007 at 7:42 pm


Kindness is continually defined by the small seemingly insignificant things…
Kindness was in its glory when my 3-year-old son hugged my 96-year-old deaf grandfather in his wheel chair… I thought they’d never let go… I know I never have.



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sonny maione

posted October 7, 2007 at 7:44 pm


the most wondeful act of kindness I ever witnessed was the birth of children..this act of Love and giving has always had a profound effect on me….the simple pure pleasure and 100% love that a child give too all of us,has never stoopped amazing me…this gift from God, is my most wonderful act of love and kindness



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Susan

posted October 7, 2007 at 7:54 pm


When I was 18 years old I lost my Sister to Cancer she was only 22 years old. It was really hard on my Mom. Well, things got really hard for us financially after that, but my Mom had a truly wonderful boss at the time. We had no car at the time so my Mom was riding the bus everyday to and from work. My Mom’s boss went out and bought my Mom a car because he and his wife are truly giving people. I will never forget them, they have helped us in so many ways over the years. My Mom is a truly giving person as well. She will give you the shirt from her back if you needed it. She does not have much, but what she does have she shares with everyone she knows and some that she does not.



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Vkara Phifer-Smith

posted October 7, 2007 at 7:55 pm


My brother thanking me for all the things I had done for him during
his illness. He was so full of compassion and grace toward me. His glowing smile washed away all the quilt I had been feeling – thinking I had not done enough. He felt my anquish and he freed my spirit with his loving kindness even though he was in tremendous pain. He passed over a few hours later. I am forever grateful for the compassion he showed me.



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Pat Cornish-Hall

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:12 pm


Loving kindness from a friend who accepted me for who I am, especially when I could not accept myself.
She truly is a gentle loving soul. I will always be grateful to her.



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Donna Greenberg

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:18 pm


I was driving from Philadelphia to Rye, NY, to take my acupuncture boards for the second time. I took my husband’s car, which was in better shape than mine. At that time, I did not have a cell phone. When I got to the Tappan Zee Bridge, the traffic was stopped for quite a while. My car broke down and I was in the middle lane of traffic. I got out of my car, started to walk to the car behind me to see if I could borrow a cellphone; the driver intuited my need and handed me the phone, saying, “Call your husband or whoever you need.” I thanked her, made a call to the AAA for help, and then realized they’d never be able to reach me. So I went to a nearby truckdriver and explained my plight. He got out of his car, and like magic, four other men got out of their trucks and cars and they all came over to help me. They lifted the hood, figured out the problem, told me what it was, got me started temporarily, and directed traffic to push my car over safely to the shoulder, and told me how to find the nearest gas station for help. They refused money. When I got to the station, I was told it would take an hour or so and they suggested I eat at the nearby fast food restaurant. I went in and saw a woman eating alone. I asked if I could join her. She turned out to be a holistic healer, too, and she followed me all the way to Rye, with jumper cables in her SUV, just in case my car broke down again. Who says New Yorkers don’t have hearts?



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sheila

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:24 pm


The most profound act of kindness I ever received was when my father calmly told me to go home and have a happy life. After I left he committed suicide. He was very sick and struggled with heart disease and depression. At his darkest moment he wished me happiness. In retrospect I am not surprised by this act of kindness because he was a very compassionate person.



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Lin Murphy

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:25 pm


Very recently…
My husband has just been dianosed with cancer.
Two friends came forth to offer reiki sessions with him that have
helped him to relax and heal from the surgery.
Loving firends and family have been pouring forth prayer that has held us in healing energy and light during a difficult time.



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Laura Folk

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:28 pm


My act of kindness was finding a dog knocked un conscious by the side of the road. I lived 15 miles away in the mountains and was hitchiking home to my tipi. It was winter, I had just gotten off shift working the graveyard shift all night. I could not leave the dog. I found a friend and we called a vet. The vet gave the dog a shot, we took the unconscious dog to my friends house. The vet had shown me how to do acupressure points on the dog. I sat for hours doing this keeping the dog going. I was exhausted. Finally I stopped and the dog woke up. IN the mean time I had called my job stating I could not come in to work. I ended up loosing my job to save the dog.
We put an add out and someone came for the dog (it was not theirs) they took me and the dog to another vet, they finished saving the life of the dog.



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carrie gianattasio

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:37 pm


I have witnessed kindness in the smallness of things. It is easy to witness heroic acts of kindness but the glue of humanity is and always will be in my belief these small acts that ripple so far from us that we never understand their effect. That is what it makes us kind. In the not knowing of our actions. Just in knowing that they are infinitely the right thing to do. And I believe that in those small things is where humanity exists. I can give multiple simple examples; but will just give these three: For one year on my way to work there was road construction. And there was one flag person who continually smiled, waved, and bowed to the cars that passed. Can you imagine trying so hard to get to work in a funk and there is a stranger who stops you in your piddly little thoughts to just smile? The second is the lunch lady who admits to you one sad day “I am just a lunch lady”. Yet she delivers lunch with joy and you can only think thankful thoughts that your son or daughter interacts with this person to feel ok on a day when life has been cruel by a school bully. And last but not least the nurse who stands by you and your siblings to watch the last hours of your dad’s life. You have finally taken the courage to take him off life support yet here is a stranger who gives your dad dignity in his last hours and grieves with you when he passes out of this world. You can sense her feeling of loss for one more life leaving this world. To me this is what kindness is and what makes the human race have the hope of all it’s potential to be kind.



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Yvonne Miller

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:41 pm


I’m sure I have seen greater acts of kindness in my lifetime as I have known some truly wonderful people. However, there is one that sticks in my mind and keeps me going on the rough days. It happened about 20 years ago. I was in my mid-30s, desperately wanting a baby (not married, engagement just ended). I wanted a baby more than anything I could think of and had just been told I probably would never have one due to problems with my reproductive organs. A secretary in my office was 7 or 8 months pregnant. A few weeks after I got the word I wouldn’t have children, she had to have a sonogram and asked if I would like to go with her. I suppose to some this might seem heartless, but I knew I would never have all the anticipation and experience of carrying a child. Without me saying a word, she figured out that it was this that was breaking my heart – I can love and adopt any child, but I will never know the “mystery” and wonder of pregnancy. I went to the sonogram with her, I got to listen to the little heartbeat, and see the baby on the monitor. She let me feel her baby move and the doctor guided me in moving the scanner over her belly and count toes or take a guess as to gender. I was never close to this secretary; we were merely friendly co-workers in the same office. But her kindness and compassion could not have been more appreciated, and still is. I never was able to have that baby, but at least I have known some of the wonders of motherhood; all because a virtual stranger was kind enough to share her joy.



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lisa

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:46 pm


Finding buddhism and the kindness of the Dalai Lama has been life altering for me…i have been lucky enough to study under Lama Surya Das who has been influenced greatly by the Dalai Lama.
After surviving breast cancer.. i went back to school to become a nurse to help others in need. It is very important to understand that cherishing others is the most important act we can perform…equalizing and make others needs come first is so humbling and fufilling there is nothing material that can give you the same joy and fufill the emptiness inside….touch another human beings life and buy a new bag and see which one makes you feel better



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David McKenzie

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:53 pm


A complete stranger helping me get recover from my alcoholism.



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Anonymous

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:55 pm


I am born 1954 in germany. It was a poor time while I was a kid and we didn’t had a lot of money. One evening my mother took me to a ‘curry wurst stand’ ,a place where you could buy a hot sausage with fries, todays MD I guess. I was maybe 5 years old.In line before us was an old woman who ordered her food and when she had to pay pretended that the coin she wanted to pay with fell down and she couldn’t find it. (We had 5 mark coins, something like a 5 dollar coin) My mother realized that the woman was hungry and did not had any money so without any hesitation she (my mother) bended down and pretended to just had found the missing coin. Using her own money and believe me we did not had a lot. By doing so she saved the pride of the old woman and payed for her lunch. I am 53 now and live in the US but I still remember this act of loving kindness as the most remarkable act I ever witnessed.
H. Michael Koppner
hmichaelk1@yahoo.com



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Michael

posted October 7, 2007 at 8:58 pm


I am born 1954 in germany. It was a poor time while I was a kid and we didn’t had a lot of money. One evening my mother took me to a ‘curry wurst stand’ ,a place where you could buy a hot sausage with fries, todays MD I guess. I was maybe 5 years old.In line before us was an old woman who ordered her food and when she had to pay pretended that the coin she wanted to pay with fell down and she couldn’t find it. (We had 5 mark coins, something like a 5 dollar coin) My mother realized that the woman was hungry and did not had any money so without any hesitation she (my mother) bended down and pretended to just had found the missing coin. Using her own money and believe me we did not had a lot. By doing so she saved the pride of the old woman and payed for her lunch. I am 53 now and live in the US but I still remember this act of loving kindness as the most remarkable act I ever witnessed.



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Pier-Anna

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:00 pm


TWO DEGREES OF THE DALAI LAMA?
My son was three years old and had a tumor behind his eye; doctors were unsure if it had spread to his brain. I’d asked everyone, no matter what faith, to pray for him. When I returned home from researching who best pediatric neurologist for the case would be, I found a phone message from a neighbor who’d been asked to pray: It stated that she’d made an appointment for the following day with the very neurosurgeon whose name I’d found. That doctor was Fred Epstein, not only famous for his brilliant medical work, but for inviting the Dalai Lama to walk round with him and having a monk teach meditation in his hospital! I have never heard the Dalai Lama speak and would be honored to do so. Dr. Epstein has since passed, but yet he touches our family again!
Postscript: Dr. E. found the tumor was not in the brain, asked how he could serve us and got us to Sloan Kettering. All along we’d worked with the healer John Carroll, who’d told us the diagnosis was incorrect and that the tumor could be healed without medical treatment. Sloan K. confirmed that the initial diagnosis was incorrect, we refused radiation, worked with John and the tumor disappeared….John came to our home when my son was too ill exhausted after testing and climbed into bed to pray with us. When I asked months later, my neighbor who’d made the appt. recounted how her boss overheard her asking someone else to pray and was was moved to make the appt. (without anyone asking) as he knew Dr. E. So many kindnesses.



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Melody Smith

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:03 pm


I participated in one of the Ithaca Namgyal monastery summer Introduction to Tibetan Buddhism weekends. It was outside of Ithaca, NY, far from anywhere, and was a wonderful opportunity to meet with the monks of the Dalai Lama, learn a bit of their language, their life and customs, even to try (badly, in my case!) their techniques of mandala making. We got to speak with them and ask questions in a way that few are able to do.
Two of the monks picked up a turtle hit by a car and brought it to the camp. There, they made it comfortable and watched it die. There was little more we could do, other than be present with it in its death.
I observed all that makes up their training, the great discipline, the compassion, and the mindfulness.
I have an adopted daughter with many trauma issues and on the last day of the workshop, one of the monks patiently played with her and brought her out of her shell to play with the Tibetan children who came out from the Ithaca community as well.
And when my father passed away two months ago, I was able to be mindful and present with him at the end, something we Americans often try to avoid (facing death and dying).



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Stephanie Quinn

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:18 pm


A few years ago, I was battling with compulsive eating. I was in college and gained 20 pounds within a very short amount of time. I was too afraid to get help because I did not want to be considered weak; I wanted to conquer the problem myself. Looking back, I thought I looked hopeless and weak to the other students. At the end of the semester, on the last day of one of my classes, a student came up to me and said, “I’ve been wanting to tell you all semester how beautiful you are.” I could tell by his eyes that he was being sincere; he was not joking or being sarcastic. His simple and honest comment meant so much to me. I know I wasn’t physically attractive at the time, but he saw something inside of me and I would love to find him again to let him know how deeply he touched me. I currently have self control and am now back to a healthy weight, and I know that his comment helped me to realize my capibilities and potential.



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sandra appell

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:20 pm


When I was 35 I was diagnosed with breast cancer. This was the first of two times that I survived it. I was a single parent with a small child, working as a therapist but still with very little resources.
I was devestated, lost, and felt so alone. I believed very strongly that cancer was a breakdown of the immune system and was moved by wholistic medicine in general. But, I could not afford anything other than what the city provided.
My friend who lived across country gave me $10,000 so that I could get treatment anywhere in the world. I read about all the clinics and decided to get treatment in Switzerland and then to get different wholistic treatments in Germany.
My friend refused any reimbursement.
I have never had a mestastis and it has been 9 years now!
My friend also flew across country for my surgeries and had people
pray for me and do long distance healings.
I am blessed by his generousity and and supreme act of kindness.



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Teresa Casas

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:23 pm


I witness and was so lucky to have received this act of kindness. I know that as a mother your mother will see you through everything in life. However, I had never seen anyone like my mother. I know this because I have been bless with meeting many mothers. But the biggest act of kindness that I have ever seen was when in 1999 I almost lost my life do to an illness and my mother a spend 59 days at the hospital with me. Without caring about the fact that she would have to sleep at the hospital and bath there also. It was if the world had stop for her. She told the doctors that I was not going to die no matter what they thought or what science may say and that they better get use to seeing her. Cause if I was going to be in the hospital so was she. Of the 59 days I spend 20 in a coma. She was there the whole 59 days without even going home to check on the house or anything. She had her friends bring her clothing and check on the mail. You could say she was determine. She has since past on to the real world. But she taught me a great lesson in humanity and to never lose faith. Prayers and little act of kinds were part of who she was everyday. I hope I have been able to past to my children also.



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Sandra McKinney

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:30 pm


I was 17, had run away from a bad situation at home and was alone in a strange city in another state. I found a job as a waitress and was deparately trying to find a decent place to live. A kind cab driver took me to look at a room advertised in the local paper. The home owner, a widow, would not rent the room to me due to where I worked, my age and situation. The cab driver had just been chatting to me the whole time. I was very upset when she obviously thought I was an undesirable person of poor moral character. The driver thought differently. He took me to another widow’s home, a friend of his. She aksed the same questions. Looked at me long and hard and said “welcome to my home.” I worked hard, paid rent on time and eventually went back to school and on to college. Two strangers willing to take a chance and help made a profound difference in my life then and the way I treated everyone from that day forward. Kindness begets kindness.



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Mary Lensing

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:40 pm


I was having a “bad” day. Problems with my kids. Dealing with my grandchildren. My health problems were giving me much pain. And money was very low. My power bill was due that day. I had to choose between food or lights. My car was parked in the parking lot of the power office. I sat in it crying. Crying out for help to relieve all this pain and suffering that I was going through. Asking for strength to get through the day. Asking for guidance to see me through this. I took a deep breath, wiped away my tears and got out of the car. I paid my bill. As I was walking out of the building I saw an elder gentleman walking my way. He was dressed in a suit. His hat tilted to the side. He was limping in walking with a cane. I held the door open for him. Looked him in the eyes and smiled. His words to me were ” God Bless You.” Little did he know that those few words were the ones that I really REALLY needed to hear at that very moment. I may never see that man again but I will never forget him. I always teach my children and grandchildren how powerful actions and words are. And how what you give out is what you will recieve back. I may have been at my very lowest point that day. But I still was there to help others. And I got back exactly what I needed. Thanks!!! :o)



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Kimberly

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:49 pm


As a practicing Catholic all of my life I was introduce to the teachings of Buddhism several years ago. I have found that incorporating the teachings of mindfulness and loving compassion into my life along with the continued practice of Catholicism have given me the capacity to achieve the peace, love and understanding that I have always longed for. Reading the teachings of the Dalai Lama and also of Thich Nhat Hahn have transformed my way of being. It would be a great honor to be in the presence of someone on earth who is the essences of God.
Regardless of the outcome this is a pronominal way to spread peace and love to all who visit this site.
Namaste



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Barbara A. Halpin

posted October 7, 2007 at 9:53 pm


My father was born in 1928 the first son of Irish immigrants who emigrated to Brooklyn, New York. My father was forced to stop school and start working at the age of 13 to help support his other two brothers and mother since his father had died. At the age of 17 he was drafted. It was towards the end of WWII. He was injured during his service and became sterile. When he was released from duty, he went back to live with his mother and support her and his two brothers again, except, not only did he work full time to support them, he also enrolled in school. While supporting his family, he completed high school, college and his Master’s degree to become a teacher, and then guidance counselor for the NYC Board of Education. This is where he met my mother, a Queens woman of German and Hungarian descent, who was also a teacher for NYC, and they began dating. He proposed, she said yes! He told her of his injury and the very real possibility that they may not be able to conceive their own children. She said she was okay with that and they should wait to see what would happen. After several years of trying to conceive with no luck, they decided to adopt, and adopt, and adopt, and adopt, and adopt. When all was said and done, starting with my adoption in 1969 and the last child adopted in 1977, they had adopted five children. Race was not an issue either. I am Cuban and Italian, my sister is Korean, my other sister is Haitian, my brother is Puerto Rican and my other brother is Colombian. Three of us were born in New York and two were born in foriegn countries. My parents did this long before Angelie Jolie and Brad Pitt made it en vogue, and only God knows how they did it on teachers salaries especially since every year we spent our summer vacation in the family van touring North America, not only learning about each other, but the rest of America!



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Cathi

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:00 pm


Following the break up of our relationships, each of my 3 ex-husbands went on to remarry and have lovely, intelligent and sweet children. While I have since remarried, I have no children of my own. However, I am “Auntie” to all their children, adore them and thoroughly enjoy all their wives, and we all stay very closely involved in each others’ lives.
It amazes me that we have all forgiven the hurts of the past, and give so much love to one another. I truly believe the children are better off for it. None of the kids knows how I am “related” to Dad. And within the group of adults, we have loved and supported each other through the funerals of our parents, as well as cancers and cancer scares, business disappointments, other betrayals and fortunately, danced at weddings and cheered at graduations. What a blessing to be part of such a beautiful family!
It was my second husband, who in the bitterest time of our separation, taught me most about the power of forgiveness, when after I thanked him for being so kind to me when he could just as easily have been mean, he said “it is never inappropriate to be kind.” I have never forgotten the feeling of blessing that I felt in that moment, and have gone on to share with others not only the statement, but the action.
And in the twenty years since, I think that message and that feeling, have spread from us like ripples in a pool to touch many others.
As the Dalai Lama says: my only religion is kindness. What a revolutionary thought! Think how it could change the world.



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Devin Bigler

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:12 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed occured when my grandmother was dying of cancer. My mother had been taking care of her for the short duration of her illness. We were all grateful that she did not have to suffer for a long time, once we became aware of her condition, it was only a matter of weeks before Hospice was called in. We were also so grateful that before she was too weak, our whole family was able to get together and spend a weekend at her home. She was well enough to really enjoy it, and we were very much all living in the present moment that weekend. Immediately following that weekend she became much less coherent, and her disease rapidly took over. It was such an awesome experience to watch my mother take care of her, and to see how gentle and brave she was. I know my mother knew that there was not much time left, and that my grandmother was holding on for my mom, for “her child.” The most profound act of kindness and selflessness that i’ve ever witnessed is when I saw my mom tell my grandmother, “It’s ok, it’s okay for you to let go, we will all be fine, you can rest now.” As a mother myself, I understand how hard it would be for me to leave my own children, and I can imagine how worried for them I would be. As a daughter it is hard to imagine having to be so brave and selfless to let my mom go, to reassure her that we would all be ok, to give her permission to let go of this world, and leave me… I feel so fortunate to have such a special relationship with my mom, and it makes my stomach hurt and my heart ache to imagaine having to go through that situation with her, but her example of loving kindness and selflessness is inspiring and will not be forgotten. And when I think of how wonderful for my grandmother those words must have been, I realize how powerful unselfishness and kindness are. I am so very lucky to have witnessed this. I’ll never forget it.



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JOANN SHAW

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:15 pm


I AM IN DEEP TRANSFORMATION, I AM LETTING GO OF BLOCKS AND PEOPLE AND I FEEL AS IF I AM BEING RIPPED APART. I WOULD BE HUMBLY HONORED TO BE IN HIS PRESENCE. THANK YOU FOR THIS MARVELEOUS OPPORTUNITY.
HUMBLY, JOANN



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Tom Wilken

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:19 pm


The uncondition love of and connection with my inner self.



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jerry la fleur

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:33 pm


my heart attack, my grandchild, and the DALIA LAMA all came into my life at the same time. my grandchild made me want to live , and im in her presence every day, theDALIA LAMA shows me the way to live. to see and hear him , to feel the compassion and energy and the loving kindness,id feel complete.



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Mary Ellen Culligan-Hay

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:41 pm


I was living in the Bronx with the Missionaries of Charity, at a time when Mother Theresa was there.. I had been very upset at this time and Mother and I spoke about the fact that I was adopted and had done some searching without any success. I had not told my adoptive mother anything about this.
Mother Theresa told me that I must find my birth mother,and she herself wanted to speak with my adoptive mother about this. She wanted to tell my adoptive mother this herself because she wanted to make it clear to my adoptive mother that I did love her and I needed to find my birth mother.. I did bring my mother to see her and Mother Theresa talked to my mother so lovingly and kindly, explaining to her that this was something that I needed to do, and that I loved my adoptive mother very much. My mother was in tears for most of the visit. Mother Theresa also contacted the New York Foundling Hospital to see what information she could gather for me.. However I myself had to contact them also. My mother, after this visit did agree to go to court with me to see if the birth records were able to be unsealed, which they were not. Mother Theresa did tell me I would find my birth mother. 6 years later, under unusual circumstances, I did find her and my 2 birth brothers and one sister in Brooklyn all within 20 blocks of where my husband and I were living at the time..I will never forget this kindness from Mother Theresa , that with all her commitments and concerns, she took time out to be with me and my adoptive mother, and to contact the Foundling hospital and care about this issue when she had so many other things to deal with.. I feel blessed to have known her and her care and love for me…



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nasreen

posted October 7, 2007 at 10:50 pm


in deciding to leave a relationship of thirty years i came upon the discovery of my own self. reading and practicing buddhist philosophy and learning that on this journey the first person that i need to love and forgive is myself was the most difficult and continues to be the most self-fulfilling journey. i am realizing everyday that the more i nurture myself the more i am able to love others and it is truly empowering – this quiet strength within myself to heal my own soul and provide comfort to everyone i meet. n.



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Traci Ford

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:15 pm


I was laid off from a job where I had been employed for eight years. The following two years was spent trying to find another job with no success. I had built up quite a sizeable debt and was stressed out. I had gone to visit my mentor from college one day and found myself venting to him about my inability to get hired anywhere. He could see my distress and offered to give, not lend, me $300 per month until I could get back on my feet. After spending about an hour convincing me to accept his offer, (I am not accustomed to asking for, nor accepting what I consider to be charity), I humbly accepted and asked him why. He told me it was something he had to do. I tried to coax him into elaborating, but that was all he would say. I don’t even want to think about where I would be without his help, both financially and spiritually; especially considering he is an atheist. He replinshed not only my faith in God and Karma, but in humankind.



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Kathleen Smith

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:43 pm


She is four years old, and her name is Lindsay. She and her dad are from Biloxi, military family that moved here like so many other folk. For awhile, her dad and I chitchatted about Mississippi. I have never been, but I’ve heard enough about it from my mom, who was stationed there with first husband Bill, when he was in the Marines (my dad was in the Air Force). And I have family in Tupelo, which is wayyyy north.
Lindsay needed me to fix her glasses, named Aurora Pink and Cinderella Blue. While I was fixing the glasses, her dad was talking to her about the lab and how glasses are made. She was so articulate, asking questions, and asking me politely if I could fix this or adjust that for her. Cinderella is her favorite, but she’s never seen Sleeping Beauty. I told her she HAS to, because the fairy godmothers make the coolest cake that changes colour in that movie. She smiled at me as I said this, and whispered to her dad (rather loudly) that she needed to see Sleeping Beauty now. Her dad said “I have it at home on Netflix, remember? You just haven’t watched it so we can return it.” She thought for a minute and said “I don’t want to return it. I’ll do that when I grow up.” Her dad was like “Well, that’s not for a long time.” I kind of laughed to myself at how adorable she was, and she was like “So?” Her dad called her silly.
I told her silliness is the best anecdote for adulthood, and her dad agreed with me.
She had the smile of an old soul, like she knew how truly fortunate she was to be on her father’s lap at four and to know she was loved without heartbreak tampering her innocence. But she didn’t consciously know. How can any of us consciously know at four years old the tumultousness that awaits us with life?
Or maybe I simply read too much into a chance encounter with one of the most beautiful children I have ever seen in my life. As a writer, I think I have a habit of questioning and looking into things more than the average person. However, I do know one thing. She is going to grow up to be truly breathtaking, both in appearance and personality, I know it.
When our time was done, she and her father thanked me. As she was getting off his lap to leave, she blew me two kisses.
The English language lacks words for how small stuff like this touches my soul.



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Wendy

posted October 7, 2007 at 11:45 pm


One of the most profound acts of kindness I’ve ever witnessed was this past summer. I was in a small New England town, and one day while driving by the bank I noticed that a retarded man was sitting on a bench outside the bank and powerfully yelling “I love you” to all of the passing cars and trucks. The kindness of this man was returned by each driving who waved and or honked their horn in recognition of the bellowing “I love you” that came from the man on the bench. I was struck by the love that was returned to this man, especially in a day and age when such an action might trigger a less friendly and loving response from passers by.



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Renea LaPrade

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:04 am


Clearly the most profound act of kindness I have ever seen I am fortunate enough to say I have also experienced. And not just one act but a combination acts that brought to my life such joy I never imagined. In the past I would consider my self a child of unfate and unfortune. Meaning I came from a lot of bad choices that others made for me. Abused in different ways and not thought on in others. As a young adult these misfortunes became my reason to turn away from faith. Believing that my only fate would be built by self-destruction. Not realizing that with age came the break down of old thought patterns, wants and dislikes. The feeling of dangling by a thread connected to nothing began to cosume my thoughts. Before I knew it I was thirty and everyone around me had a partner and a child with whom to share their lives. The want was so much more than me I couldn’t speak it though I wanted all my life. I didn’t know how to make it happen or if I could. Surprisingly at the age of thirty-three I met a man. We decided to walk arm and arm. Though I would say at the time I did not believe some how it felt fated. Within one years time we were able to pack our things and move together to a coastal town. We were enchanted. And without warning and without belief on my part that such an event could occur. I became pregnant. This doesn’t sound out of the ordinary, but in fact and not very safe on my part. I am epileptic and I am on two different medications. The whole of the situation not at all safe for a child and it’s developement. Somehow the universe decided it was time for a turn around. And I felt if I were good to my temple (body) and dug deep within; Conjuring some faith could be the true medicine leading me to a place so sacrid my soul has only wispered. And until now never known unconditional LOVE. During the emotion of pregnancy I wish I could say I did not weaver in my belief that all would be well. And as I’m sure most women do I worried myself sick with thoughts of his health. As the months drew my man and I closer to the moment, by stress our bonds did not strengthen but stretched thin. And from emotions all my relationships were strained. With my best friend of seventeen years. My family constantly voicing concern impacting my fears and the distance we already shared. There were issues with the baby. He was too small. He did not have enough amniotic fluid. I had gained 70 pounds. So the decision was made to take him 3 weeks early. And again the universe turned. The day that I was induced I was taken to the hospitol by a man that adored me. A best friend that admired me. And a mother who beyond anything I may have ever believed loved me. They all stayed. Never leaving. For 48 hours of labor. And the largest kindness given by a universe I did not think knew I existed weighed exactly 6 pounds. Laid upon my chest. Opened his beautiful eyes the second I spoke his name. So I shall walk this earth the rest of my days forever grateful.



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Robin Fulford

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:07 am


The most profound act of kindness I’ve ever witnessed, is an on-going one.
An elderly couple and their 35-year old, handicapped son live next door to me. Although the mother and father have health issues of their own, and are in their late 70’s, each day they do what they can to care for and provide a meaningful, ‘normal’ life for their son.
When their son was less than a year old, they were told by medical professionals that he was severely handicapped and would never be able to care for himself, let along ever sit up by himself. He was diagnosed to be both mentally and physically handicapped with muscular and neurological problems, and the doctors suggested that their son be placed in a facility that could care for him. They decided against that and kept their son at home. They patiently worked with their son and not only taught him how to sit up, but how to walk. They didn’t stop there, and over the years, they taught him to do as much for himself as he was able, to be as “capable” as he could be.
Today, he holds a full-time line job in a manufacturing plant where he’s been continuously employed for the past 15 years. Although he still will never be able to live on his own, he is very happy and does live a very meaningful life.
What amazes me, and what I consider to be a profound act of kindness, is how his parents have taken care of him over the years and how they continue to care for him. Among other things, the son is spastic, so the father shaves his son each morning. Each evening, the mother brushes and flosses her son’s teeth. They’ve been with their son continuously since he’s been born, and their entire lives have revolved around caring for him. You may say that this is just their responsibility … their job as his parents. But I see how they care for him, and I believe each day they provide a profound act of kindness. And I am blessed with this experience.



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angel

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:01 am


I am a sixty year old single parent, in may 2007 i had a heart attack that the doctors said i am lucky to be alive.
It was not luck, It was the determination to see my son finish college and become self supportive.I still work 50-60 hours a week and still have chest pains that I have to stop and take a break. But I am not ready not yet.
Things have not been good financialy,but spiritualy I am alive.



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Amy P.

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:04 am


One of the most profound acts of kindness that I have ever witnessed occurred about a year and a half ago in the elementary school where I teach. Over one weekend in January, people had broken into our school and trashed and vandalized various areas, including my classroom. Having had my car broken into already a few weeks earlier, and having dealt with the usual challenges that come with teaching in an underfunded urban school in a disadvantaged area, I was at my breaking point. That morning when I discovered what had happened, I felt like giving up, and in the meantime, had to make quick decisions about where to take my students for the day. They would have been devastated if they had seen the chaos in which the room had been left. Mr. S., a fellow teacher in our part of the building, offered to share his classroom with us for the day, but I didn’t want to trouble him, and we decided to go to the library and make ourselves comfortable at a few tables. Unbeknownst to us, Mr. S. had bigger plans besides offering us space in his room.
After about an hour and a half, Mr. S. and his students came to us, with brooms and dustpans in hand, and asked us to come back upstairs for a surprise. They giggled with excitement as they led my students and me, completely curious but still discouraged by what had happened over the weekend, back to our classroom. As we entered, we couldn’t believe our eyes: The bookcases that had been tipped over were turned right-side up again… The papers and objects that had been strewn about the floor were arranged in neat piles on top of the table, and the desks and chairs that had been tipped over were returned to their proper positions. We could do nothing but stand in awe at this unexpected and generous act of kindness. Mr. S. and his students beamed with joy just to know that they had helped us, and they had expected nothing in return. We all exchanged hugs and laughter, and we were deeply grateful to Mr. S. and his class for taking time out of their schedule to selflessly help us get back on our feet again and restore some of our optimism. This was the most profound and sincere act of kindness that I have witnessed. I hope that it continues to serve all of us who were present that day as an example of how kindness brings joy to both the recipients and the givers.



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mary cowan

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:13 am


When my sister-in-law died unexpectedly at age 47, my brother was heart broken. I travelled from Los Angeles to a tiny town in Ohio where our family gathered to grieve our loss and to support my brother and his two children. By the time I arrived, a schedule for the viewing had already been set, and I rode with my brother from his home in the country to the funeral home in the nearby town.
As our immediate family stood together and chatted quietly beside the coffin, people began to accumulate, forming a line through the room, out the door and down the sidewalk. In a few moments, my brother began greeting guests.
For two solid hours that afternoon, and again for two more hours that evening the line had no end. I sat and watched my brother. Every single person offered the gift of his own heart. Every heart opened itself to my brother with the intent of allowing him to take as much as he could accept. Every heart sincerely yearned to aid my brother in his time of sorrow.
Remembering it now, the faces, bodies, personalities of the individuals fade into nothing. It is only the Activity of Love Itself that remains…the activity of The Giving of Love and The Receiving of Love that has shown itself to be so totally extraordinary.



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Cheryl Anderson

posted October 8, 2007 at 2:55 am


This story was related to me by a family member. My parents were divorced when I was 3 and my sister was 5. In 1952 California, children went to their mothers. Even if their mothers were unstable. My father stayed nearby and rather than pay child support he paid all the bills, knowing this was the only way our needs would be met and he could be readily available to us if we needed him. Along the way he met a nice lady and fell in love. My mother found out and called him to tell him to quit seeing “the red head” or she would take a butcher knife to my sister and I. He knew she might do it and was sharing the call with the lady as they drove down the freeway. And yes, rather than have my Dad have to choose between the children he loved and her, the lady jumped out of the car and was killed.
As it was related to me I believe this was not an act of conscious suicide but a profound act of loving kindness.



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Nan Marks

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:12 am


During and following my second heart surgery, my daughter was available to me as a support. She continued to be my backbone when I lost mine and needed a friend. She offered love and her home as a place of rest and healing, following my heart surgery.



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dawn yaccarino

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:10 am


My tenants Adam and Jessica who live above me adopted a senior dog,her name is Rosie.Rosie they said was eight years old and in good health.When they got her home they were so excited they called me up to meet her.Rosie was a beautiful fawn colored chihuahua who is blind, and has a dreadful cough.What captured me the most was the compassion and the love they had for Rosie,she fit right into their family.Rosie’s first vet vist did’nt go well.The vet looked at Rosie and said to Adam and Jessica where did you get this dog she must be a least 18 and might have breast cancer bring her back. Well they did not bring Rosie back.Rosie is home receiving so much love and tender care.Their act of kindness really moved me.Adam and Jessica could have adopted a puppy,but knew the puppies had a better chance then the senior dogs.I’m happy to say Rosie is living a good life now,thanks to two very compassionate people.



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Patricia Danna

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:58 am


This is not a complain nor is it an attempt to grandtand of try to get credit in any way. The reason I would liket ot share this is to show that an act of kindness on your own part can bring great rewards. I do not do kind things with any expectations of recieving anything in return. Being kind comes naturally to me and in sometimes in mysterious ways has always brought back rewards to what I consider to be ten fold. In a day and age where kindness seems to be rare and even non existent in some areas, I still choose to hold firm to my beliefs and to be what I like to be which is kind.
Ten years ago, I found myself in a very difficult situation. Both of my parents bcame serioulsy ill, I was getting a divorse from someone that ruined my credit, got us evicted, had my car repossed and forced me to file bankruptcy. I had not place to go.
I had been helping my Mother with my Fathers Parkinsis Disease until he passed on. My Mother was suffering form COPD and could barely get around.
I moved in with her to help her and stayed there for five years. No longer in the outside work force and losing contact with most of my friends turned out to be a blessing in disguise. During those five beautiful years I came to know my Mother as a person, outside of her motherhood. She shared stories of how she met my Dad, their courtship and many memoreies of when I was much to small to remember myself.
During the last year of my Mother’s life I had to call 811 on four different occasions. Each time I would watch the ambulance drive away wonder if this would be the last time I would see my Mother.
Much to my amazement, my Mother returned home after a hospital stay.
The last time that I had to call I decided that if I were lucky enough to have her return again I was going to surprise her with a gift that would require very little money.
She did retun home one last time and the following Sunday morning I picked up her bathrobe and asked her to get into the car. I filled her portable oxygen tank being extra careful to make sure it was completely full to allow us the time I would need.
She really did not want to go bedause she wasn’t feeling well but she did it for me I know.
We drive aalmost twenty miles and we were in the middle of turning onto the street where the house that she ggrew up in was locaged. She took a ddep breath and smiled. She looked around in amazement at the many things that had changed and commented on those that didn’t. She shared stories. She told me about the Halloween my Grandma saved a little girls life. This little girl had chosed to be s ghost and was wearing a big white sheet. They did not have flashlights but rather carried candles instead. The candle caught the little girls sheet of fire. Thanks to my grandmas’ quick thinking, she grabbed a throw rub from her entryway and frolled the little girl in it until the fire was gone. There ewer many stores, about the rag man, the mil man and even a story about the looney man that lived across the street. He would rent to Oakland Auditorium every year for hisfollowing. He actually believe that he was President of the United States! When we drove on t our next destination, her only comment was” What a wonderful childhood I had, I am so lucky!
Next we took a drive past each of the schools that she attended and the ice rink where she skated and then on to the house where she and my Dad first lived. The house that she brought me home to as a new born.:First I drove the twenty miles that it oook to the home in which she grew up in. We cruised the neighborhood and stopped in front of the hold house where she lived.
There I learend how she would put me in the laundry basket and then out on the front porch for fresh air. And then how she and my Dad would put me in the back seat of their new Pontiac and go for a drive so that I wuold go to sleep.
Being that we were in the eastern part of the city, I had a spontaneous thought to stop and pick up my Auntie, my Mother’s only sibling and sister. She was surprised to see us and equally surptised where I was taking them.
We took a drive to the neighborhohood that I grew up in and lived for eighteen years. They both began to chatter as we passe by the many places that held memories for them both. My auntie had her own greeting card store near our house so that brought back memories for her as well.
My mother was not well enough to be able to eat a meal out so Instead I bought dinner from her favorite restaurant for my dear Auntie, my Mother and myself.
We had a wonderful dinner and my Mother and her sister talked about a life time of memories. Long after I had went to bed I could fainly hear them in the living room, laughing and talking about their lives.The next morning I took my auntie back to her house alone. My Mother was very tired from her outing. My auntie could not stop taling and telling me what I had done for the both of them.
One week later my Moether took a turn for the worse. I was able to drive her the hospital this time though and stayed there holding her hand until she passed away, peacefully.
My birthday was only one week away. It wasn’t until almost a month passed after that that I found a card, hand written by my Mother which read.
Dear Patti, Words cannot express how proud I am for all the thoug
htfuness and love you bring to all who come to know you as you travel life’s journey.
There has not been a single day for the last fifty years (plus 9 months) that I haven’t felt love and best wishes for you, my very special daughter.
My wish for you today, on your 50th birthday is that the years to come will be good to you and bring you much happiness. Love Mom
This was the very best birthday gift that anyone could ever have given me. I keep the hand written card in my jewelry box. Every now and then I bring it out and read it again and every time it brings tears of joy to my eyes, there is nothing more beautifu;, more meaningful and more priceless that the gift of love. What she did for me was so mhc more.Leaving me such a beautiful memory.



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Diana

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:24 am


The greatest act of kindness I have received to date, I believe came from my sister-in-law. When I was in my twenties, newly married and expecting our son; me and my husband decided to move to France with my mother-in-law because the health care for the pregnancy was much more affordable. Unfortunately, my in-laws have a turbulent relationship with each other and after a few months, my mother-in-law told us to leave her apartment one afternoon. We had nowhere to go and spent the night on the street at a bus stop. As you can imagine, in a big city like Paris, this was frightening, but especially being pregnant. My sister-in-law, who has a very kind heart, helped us out the next day by paying for a week at a hotel and giving us a small amount of money to buy some food. This gave us the time to find a hotel we could afford to stay in when my husband received his pay at the end of that week. I’ll never forget how grateful I was for this kindness that my sister-in-law offered us and how much it meant to us at the time.



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Juvan

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:02 am


The eldest son at home is normally expected to be the role model for younger siblings. But there have been many instances where I have been humbled by what my younger brother has done; and he has become my beacon to kindness. One such instance happened a few years ago. Jason, just out of college and not yet on a wage came to visit me. After spending the day at my place, I went with him to drop him off at the train station. We came upon this mad beggar with no clothes who was huddled beside a car. Such a site is not uncommon in India, and most of us Indians tune-out the poverty which permeats all spheres of life in India. We/I, turn a blind eye to their suffering consoling ourself/myself that there are so many of them, and there is only so much that we can do. Jason stopped, and removed his own shirt to cover him. Though there were no shops close by we managed to purchase a small cloth to wrap around his waist. Money was no good to him, so we bought him fruits and some bread. Hoping that we had done our best for the moment, we carried on our way. I did not see that man ever again. But the incident always brings tears to my eyes when I think of it. It helped me re-connect with my inner self, and what it is be be truly human; of what humanity needs to be… I thank my brother for that.



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Win Win Kyi

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:31 am


His Holiness represents all that is pure and loving from dawn to dusk. He is a symbol of loving persistence and resilence. I adore him as he is the path to achieving the greatest human quality.Love.
Win Win Kyi
Associate Professor
Bergen Community College
Summer Teaching Faculty
Yale University



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Jacki

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:40 am


I was a brand new teacher in a tough Brooklyn high school. One day in class when I was writing on the chalk board a kid threw a book at my head. I could barely make it to the end of class. I was choking back the tears. When class was over I went into my supervisor’s office, sat in the chair next to his desk and cried. He sat at his desk and listened. Finally he said gently, “Do you know how many people have cried in that chair?” Those were the kindest words I have ever heard. Because of him, 15 years later, I am still teaching.



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alma shandra

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:53 am


my sweet sweet child jacob.i knew the day would come when he would push me away and so it was about the 3rd week into his 1st year of kindergarten and we always squeeze hugs kisses all that love and then the other day he stopped and looked at me without saying a word i knew “no more mom”.so i stood back and i said ok jacob i wont kiss you anymore (holding back the tears) and then he leaned in and said; mom.. i will always kiss you. and with that he very sweetly bowed his head and said i like you to kiss me here on on head and so i did.i love this little angel so much and everyday he reminds me how preciuos life is..thank you jacob for helping me remember and happy 6th bithday my love!!!



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Heather

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:02 am


I feel the most proufound act of kindness I have given or recieved would be that of love. “When the power of love is greater than the love of power our world will know peace”.



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AJ Watson

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:03 am


The kindest act another person has done for me would normally not seem one, however, in retrospect I know that it was. After being married for many years and divorcing, I remarried very quickly. I knew that the man I married was hard, vindictive, and had a tendency to be violent, but I felt I deserved no better. Everything I felt in my heart about the man was true, and worse. I had put myself in an unsafe, unforgiving, unmanageable situation. Though I only lived with him for a few months, I was obessed for two years. During that time I not only was abused mentally but physically. Unfortunately, I gave the verbal abuse back. I was a nightmare myself.
During these events, I began to study myself. I began to study the reasons why I did what I did, and allowed others to treat me with disrespect. Slowly I began to change. I do mean slowly. I was sad at times, happy, sorrowful, joyous, angry, and every emotion that comes from being on the roller coaster of drama.
Post note: I would like to thank his holiness for being an inspiration to me. Not only have his works helped me, but his smile, and laughter have guided me from afar.
What is the outcome? Through the inner path I found my life. I found that just being is what we do, and that we can choose how to be.
Though I have had no contact with the man who facilitated it, I thank him and the universe for opening the door. He did not know his kindness, however, he provided an amazing gift.



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Jason Olsen

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:10 am


The kindest act of kindness I witnessed was at a local supermarket…there was a family that was at the checkout — they did not have enough money for all they had and the mother started to sob. The gentleman behind then, dressed in a suit paid for all their groceries.
That was all about helping your fellow man. It gave me hope.



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Mark D Meyers

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:10 am


Working in healthcare, I am blessed to witness “LovingKindness” on a daily basis. One patient, a Trucker, needed to be hospitalized, but refused because his “Only Friend” was in his truck and needed somebody to watch over him. Security need to the truck and found the friend, a dog. A ER nurse agreeed to care for the dog while the man recovered. After several weeks we all had more friends and “Lovingkindness”



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Edward

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:15 am


Only a few weeks ago, I met a native American woman in a local cafe for the first time. We had spoken briefly on the phone, but prior to that my only knowledge of her was a photo and on a dating site.
After introducing herself, she quickly told me of the domestic violence she had continuously suffered, the seizures she had as a result, the loss of her children through divorce, and the alcoholic “remedy” she chose to cope with her situations. …wow.
I had wanted to meet someone to “date”, not expecting such an incredible emotional burden to be presented to me.
But hearing her profound suffering, I soon became overwhelmed with empathy and concern.
When we said goodnight, I asked that she call me for anything at anytime. That I would be there for her.
When her mother called me in tears just a few days later that her daughter had taken an overdose of drugs and alcohol and was in the hospital clinging to life, I comforted her. I said I would help them both emotionally and financially, which I did, without thinking twice about it. Practically strangers, I prayed for her and her relatives and have now become known to some in her family as “great bear”.
I’ve been in continuous contact with them just to “be there” for them and help in anyway that I can.
We all have the Buddha within.
Discovering it is divine.
Embracing it is our purpose.



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Linda Zehnbauer

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:16 am


After a 15 year marriage I divorced my husband, went to Morocco,married a new husband and returned to USA alone while he awaits his visa. I started my own little service business and although it has a promising start, it does not provide enough for my expenses of living alone.
My ex-husband helped support me by hiring me weekly and becoming my best customer. When even this was insufficient for me to stay afloat, my ex-husband offered me my own room in his home to live in for free with a trade of housecleaning for rent.
I had been stressed, depressed and experiencing feelings of suicide until he threw me this life preserver. Now I am calm, peaceful and with new found hope thanks to his great kindness and compassion.



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Stevan

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:16 am


every day i cry, laugh and meditate. all these gifts were given to me as a result of giving up drugs & alcohol …..



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cathy

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:25 am


The greatest act of kindness I received to date was when I was 32 years old. My husband (at the time) had a stroke at 32 years of age. It was a massive stroke which left him disabled till this day. Our friends had a drawing to raise money to help out our family. Our children where 6 years old and 1 1/2 years old. We had no medical insurance, my husband was self employed and we where starting a new business. This effort on their part gave me time to put my life in order and find a full time job to support my family. Without their efforts life would of been so much harded to bare, it gave me the ability to buy special equipment needed to care for my husband and allowed me to purchase the things the children needed. When you experience acts of kindness like this and find that you are loved and people care it makes life a wonderful place.



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Susan Wilson

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:35 am


The most profound act of kindness I experienced changed my life forever. I was a young single mother, in the middle of a highly contentious divorce from my husband. He was physically and emotionally abusive, an addict, and later diagnosed as bipolar. My children were 5 and 18 months old, and my ex-husband had succeeded in getting us thrown out of the home we owned, by refusing to pay child support and by refusing to comply with court orders to sign the house over to me so that I could renegotiate the mortgage. I was suffering from severe depression, was not working, and was nearing the end of my savings. I tried to move in with my parents, but they lived in another state, and my ex got a court order preventing me. The next step for our little family was a homeless shelter, or living in our car, and it was fall. Winter was coming, in a northern state. I was searching through the apartment ads, trying to find something that we could afford with my little bit of savings. I came across an ad for a winter rental. The home belonged to a woman that used it as a summer cottage. Her current tenants were unable to complete their tenancy because of a job change. I went to visit the house and meet the owner, and she told me that I could have the house (utilities included) because it looked as though I needed it. She told me she preferred to choose her tenants based on the good it would do in their life. We moved in to the house, and by the following spring, several things had happened. I found a job, and a year round apartment rental I could afford. I won sole custody of my sons, and worked through many visitation and child support issues. I also found a profound faith that has blessed me ever since. I’m also blessed with the knowledge that I am never alone – that good people are everywhere if I only know to look. For that, Sally, I thank you. You will always be in my heart.



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Carol Penzer Dunn

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:42 am


Two years ago a young lady ran a red light and crashed into me. I could not get out of my car on the drivers side and was in the middle of traffic. Traffic moved around me – and no one stopped…so I was able to start my car and get out of the line of traffic – I also made sure the girl was okay and if she could start her car and we both moved. A young man came over and said he saw what happened and made sure we were okay and when he saw I could not even hold my cell phone from shaking he called the police.
Not one other person stopped, they just kept driving around us. He was the only person who took the time to make sure we were okay. It may not seem like much and he wanted nothing but to make sure we were okay and to help. I wrote him a thank you letter and told him what a nice person he is and that what goes around comes around.



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Don Mead

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:51 am


My mother gave me birth. What kinder act is possible?



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Claire Schatz

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:56 am


My mothers act of giving birth, as it has allowed me to experience the world.



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Leah Martin

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:04 am


It all started at the most beautiful place in the world, the Give Kids the World Village. GKTW is a wish granting magical place next to disney world for children to stay when their last wish is to go to disney world. I was working for Disney as Alice In Wonderland at the time, and would go over to meet the children. One day, a little girl named Hailey (who was questioning if I was really “real” or not) came up to meet me. We started playing and talking, and her Dad said, “see Hailey, they really are real, they really do come to life here.” Little frail Hailey looked up at me with brusies under her eyes, and no hair, and said, “Alice, you made my dreams come true.”
That moment is the most profound act of kindness I’ve ever received, and I feel so blessed and thankful.



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Claire Schatz

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:05 am


Are you asking me to think of something kinder? Something in my heart tells me I may need to find the buddhist religion as a path to understanding more kindness in the world within man kind. Within nature, and the stillness of things untouched by man, kindness abounds.



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Rick Garver

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:14 am


A most profund act of kindness is given to us every day by the brave Americans who volunteer to keep the peace in our miltary services. They bring security where there is none – they build schools, hospitals, and other infrastructure so the less-advantage can have basic life necessities. Their mission is not to promote war but to preserve peace.



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Hilary

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:16 am


Six month ago my dear friend was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. We brought him home from the hospital to prepare for his death and during that time the kindness that was exhibited from my community was remarkable. People donated money, food, prayers, healing sessions and their endless hours of time that was needed to care for him round the clock. I always knew that I had remarkable friends, but I had no idea just how remarkable until something like this happened. We were there for each other, but also for my dying friend who continued to say right up until he died, “How did I get so lucky?” I did lose my dearest friend, but I learned how truly wonderful people can be to each other and the importance of all of that.



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Julianne Foley

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:19 am


When I was 19 years old I was diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder and clinical depression. I always thought that the reason I felt anxious and depressed was because I was weak. My mother and father shows me that greatest act of kindness by doing for me what I could not do for myself. They moved me back home, drove me to doctors’ appointments, held me when I needed to be held and tried to bring me back into society. They showed me an enormous amount of patience and love. Without them I can say most certainly, I would not be here today. But with them, I was able to finish college and obtain a full time job in Manhattan. I am in the process of applying to law school now – a dream I never thought possible. I thank them for never giving up on me.



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Helen Savastio

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:19 am


The most profound act of kindness anyone has given me is their friendsip – his helping hand guiding me through me darkest days – even though his days were often as dark as mine and often darker – he was there for me when I needed him most. When I was going through a separation with my husband – he was there – when I needed to lose weight (160 pounds) – he was there giving me encouragement – when my father died – he was there with his words of wisdom – and all of this has been through email – we “met” by chance on ebay by bidding on the same item – and we became the best of friends.
So definitely – his friendship has been the most profound gift of kindness anyone could give.
Thank you.
Helen Savastio



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Robert Grigore

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:20 am


The greatest act of kindness…this is a difficult question to answer, how do you measure greatness? Is the saviour’s acts of kindness ‘greater’ than the simple smile from a stranger on a bad day? What constitutes acts of kindness? Does this mean they are isolated from all other acts which are not of kindness, does that mean the other isolated acts are detrimental? By one measure an act is good, by another’s it is bad. It often takes one to see the other. There is no way to determine greatness if it’s measured through the subject. By the same measure, kindness is subjective, and can be witnessed in all acts period. So to me, the greatest act of kindness (if we can even call it that) is simple: the acknowledgment of the ‘being there’ of existence. I cannot fully explain how I or It can and has become, but to know of its truth radiates with comfort and through that I am bathed with kindness.



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Liz

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:28 am


The most profound act of kindness I ever received was during the darkest days of my separation and divorce. I work at a technical college, and I kept it together at work by focusing on the students I was helping, but inside I was bleeding a little each day. One day, an older student came into my office in wrinkled cook’s whites, with a face marked by experience and eyes that saw me like no one had in months. He spoke directly to my grief and despair, and I still don’t know how he saw or knew that I was in pain. He ministered to my spirit and I found myself weeping right there in my office, feeling naked and yet somehow sheltered in a way I couldn’t explain. It seemed as if God had walked into my office for those brief minutes. I felt touched by something profoundly merciful and loving. I still can’t explain it, and it sounds trivial when I try, but it was one of the most remarkable and humbling and grace-filled encounters of my life.



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Larry Butler

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:28 am


For all the troubles in the world, and there certainly are enough to go around, I still see profound acts of kindness every day. For me, the most profound are also the most simple; one human being giving of themselves to another.
The most recent that comes to mind was purpetrated by my 2 year old daughter. One of her best friends and most cherished possessions is a doll named Baby Ou-Ou. I’m not sure of the spelling. My daughter gave her the name. I think it might be French. Baby Ou-Ou goes everywhere with her, and vice versa. Baby Ou-Ou, poor thing, has no clothes; she started off life with a lovely outfit, but it is long since gone. Nor does she have shoes or sandles for her feet (these evidently went the way of her outfit). She has a scuff on her head, Baby Ou-Ou does courtesy of my 4 and a half year old, we suspect, also a daughter.
One day recently while visiting one of her friends, the friend was relieved of HER favorite doll, by HER older sister and was understandably quite upset. My 2 year old sized up the situation while havoc and a new form of free-style wrestling broke out between the mother and older daughter, also four and a half. The child who lost her doll is now prostrate on the floor, bereft. My kid walks over to her, pats her on the back, goes down on all fours to peek at her and says (and I quote) It’s okay, honey”, and gives her friend her Baby Ou-Ou. Disaster averted.
My daughter stands up and looks around the room for some sign that she has done the right thing (in her heart, I believe that she already knows she has) and finds a room full of people looking at (sans those who are still wrestling) and finds many a smiling face, none more beaming then that of her mother, who is so chocked up that she can bearly get the words of acknowledgment out of her mouth.
The evening goes on, there are more altercations as there will tend to be when you fill up a NYC apartment with 6 or 8 kids all under the age of five. Now, kindness aside, my kid’s no dummie. She didn’t fall off of the subway car yesterday, you know. She’s keeping an eye on Baby Ou-Ou because, in her mind, Baby Ou-Ou is on the lend lease program. Before the night is done, she has her Baby Ou-Ou back, the other kid has her doll back, as well, and the mother is asking the other mothers if they know anything about dislocated shoulders. And all in all, things are right in Gotham.
But is this not the way? One human being, a simple act of kindness, bringing happiness to other human beings? It’s profoundness is to be found in its simplicity. My kid’s no sage, but she knows what makes her world right, and what makes it wrong. She knows that, really, very little is required to make it right; a hug, a smile, some Cherrios, play, and no unnecessary crying, if she has anything to say about it. It is we older kids who seem to mess thing up, time and again.
Come to think of it, maybe my littlest is a sage after all…



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michael shimansky

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:29 am


the greatest act of kindness towards me is from my wife. she loves me truly and i have now been able to accept her love and love her back truly. michael shimansky



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Jan Williams

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:29 am


My Biology teacher felt sorry for me after I had been living in a tent for seven months. It was October and was beginning to freeze during the nights. She offered me a room in her house to rent. I told her that I had two dogs and three cats and that was the reason that I was living in a tent because no one wanted to rent me a place from them, with all of those animals. But relunctantly, she accepted all of us into her home because she has a great, big, giant heart. I am forever grateful to her.
Later on, she gave me $300.00 to complete my college degree because I was not going to graduate, otherwise. Now, I am nearly ready to graduate with my MS degree, thanks to her kindness.
She is truly a kind, loving teacher, mother, healer, and friend.



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Pat Pacoe

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:31 am


A profound act of kindness is someone picking up two homeless stray kittsons abandoned on the street, two strangers stopping in the midst of heavy traffic to help a stranded person whose car has broken down, a sister who helps out her sister when financial or other cares become overwhelming, giving a child a few words of support and encouragement when this may not be the norm for this child. Profound acts of kindness happen all around us daily.



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Tiagi lambert

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:32 am


The most profound act of kindness anyone has given me was a copy of
His Holiness THE DALAI LAMA..A BOOK CALLED THE ART OF HAPPINESS.
FOR THE PAST 30 YEARS I HAVE BEEN SEARCHING FOR MY OWN HAPPINESS,
BY LEARNING AND TAKING COURSES OF EVERY KIND IN ORDER TO REACH THIS POTIENTIAL..
AFTER READING THIS BOOK, IT BECAME CLEAR TO ME THAT WITH COMPASSION,KINDNESS,AND UNDERSTANDING THE DOORS TO MY OWN HAPPINESS
HAVE OPENED.
I AM NO LONGER SEARCHING FOR THAT ONE MIRACLE BECAUSE I HAVE FOUND IT WITHIN MY OWN SOUL AND THIS IS THE LARGEST GIFT I COULD HAVE GIVEN TO MYSELF..
THE SECOND GREATEST GIFT FOR ME WOULD BE TO SEE HIS HOLINESS AND HEAR ALL HIS WORDS OF WISDOM..



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Tish Livne

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:32 am


This past December, my young neice asked me to be with her and help as her mother died of cancer. She was scared and didn’t know what to do. I was scared also, but didn’t hesitate to drive to her. My sister-in-law was in a different state of mind… on lots of pain medication and seemingly tip-toe-ing between the states of life and death. Sleeping most of the time, she would occasionally walk around the house trancelike. I didn’t know what to do or how to act; I was scared too. I kept my thoughts on loving kindness, respect, and trust. Even though she couldn’t speak and didn’t seem to understand where she was, my sister-in-law communicated her love to me. The loving kindness I showed to my family came back to me 1000-fold. I felt so honored and blessed to be able to participate in her passing. I don’t even know who gave/received the kindness, but it was all around us.



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Nicole

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:35 am


My most profound act of kindness was given to me by my fiance. Two years ago I went throught a VERY difficult time personally, and he stood by my side throughout my whole ordeal that lasted for almost two years. He stood by my side when most people would have left, and he supported and cared for me everyday, even when I was VERY difficult to deal with. I will never forgot how his love and support helped me get through such a difficult time. I will LOVE and CHERISH him all of my days!!!



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Catalina Vasquez

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:36 am


“What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?”
The most profound act of kindness I have witnessed and received, I would have to say “the ability to Love and be loved”…. Love is a form of action that could both be witnessed and be received with true kindness. This is something my family and the people around me has given me, through the good times and the bad.



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Nicole

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:37 am


My most profound act of kindness was given to me by my fiance. Two years ago I went through a VERY difficult time personally, and he stood by my side throughout my whole ordeal that lasted for almost two years. He stood by my side when most people would have left, and he supported and cared for me everyday, even when I was VERY difficult to deal with. I will never forgot how his love and support helped me get through such a difficult time. I will LOVE and CHERISH him all of my days!!!



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Margo Curb-Aitken

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:39 am


My life has been blessed with many wonderful people and acts of kindness. However, one of my favorite memories of kindness came from our cocker spaniel, Punkin. When Punkin was just a puppy, about 4 months old, I became ill for about 10 days in which I was in bed and unable to go to work, get up or move about. She rarely left my side and one day, as I lay there, not moving she began to lick my eye lids…wanting me to wake up, move or show her I was okay.
She could not speak to me, but she showed me such loyalty and kindness through her actions. She showed me unconditional love regardless of my state of being. She showed concern and caring. This meant more than words, gifts or material items.
She is no longer with us, but she was truly loved.



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Melissa

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:45 am


When I was five, my older brother (15 at the time), whom I loved very much, killed himself. My parents were gone on vacation. My Mom’s best friend lived with her family directly behind us. When they took Mike’s lifeless body she asked who was going to clean up the mess (he used a shotgun placed in his mouth). They said that was up to us. She stayed….and cleaned up everything so my mother would not have to come home to funeral preparations AND evidence of what had just taken place. Her son and daughter were good friends with my brother…..so she saw him almost every day. This was very hard for her, I am sure….but she knew it would be unbearable for my Mom.



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nikki hartman

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:46 am


Life is a profound gift of kindness if your heart is in the right place.But i have lived thru so many profound experiences of kindness i would feel like i was being ungrateful if i couldnt mention them all. Recently (2006) i was in a horrible accident where i rolled an f350 and house trailer 3 times. After the accident in which i totaled my vehicle, my house and my earning potential (my buisness as a traveling artist) I had nowhere to go and nothing to earn money with until i could get my belongings from the tow shop and find a place to repair my life. Many beautiful people were wiling to donate- there shoes, food and money to me. Until i had enough to stay in a small motel and retriecve my belongings. From there an amazing family made me one of their own until i could get a place of my own. Happily I am fully recovered and returning to m y more nomadic life as a traveling artist.
Graced by the teachings of the dhali lama i never gave up hope or strength. I knew my experience was guided and had purpose as well as being gifted with the beauty of the prettier side of human nature.



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Cate

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:51 am


Rose is 12 years old (i.e., completely self involved) is gifted and is nurtured by a loving mother, aunt and grandmother to train her gifts and passions. These women surrounding Rose are worried she will develop wrong habits while attending middle school, and so they recommend Rose and her best friend Lisa start a “Random Acts of Kindness Club” to give the girls opportunities to interact compassionately between themselves and with others.
One day at school in late September, Brittany is seen crying and walking quickly into the girl’s restroom. Brittany had been in Rose’s elementary school, and of course Brittany is completely self involved as well; both girls are 12. Brittany once called Maria fat. Maria is self conscious about her slowly transforming body. She follows Brittany into the rest room.
“I’m not friends with Brittany. She’s been mean to me. But she’s crying, and I’m supposed to be kind.” Maria thinks. She asks Brittany what’s the matter.
Both she and Brittany had auditioned for the school choral group, but Brittany had not made the cut.
“Try out for the school musical in the spring,” Maria suggests. “Everyone who tries out gets a part.”
“Yes, but I’ll just be in the chorus. I never get a real part.” Brittany says, discouraged.
“It will be alright. The spring play is going to be Annie.” Rose struggles against her own conflicted emotions. Her ambition is to be Annie or Miss Hannigan in the play. She wants a lead role and often get’s one.
“It will be fun,” Rose says. “We’ll be in it together.”
In middle school, as in life, opportunities to practice kindness happen many, many times daily. Everyone struggles with desires and ego. Each opportunity to practice kindness is profound.



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Lissette

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:53 am


“What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?”
I think the most profound act of kindness I have both received and given is the ability to be loved and to be raised by someone who is not my biological parent, and I as well love and am helping to raise a child who is not my own. I feel that this is one of the hardest things to do in life because you feel a connection with this child and you want to protect this child yet you don’t have any control of the decisions made for this child. All you can do is love this child, offer your advice, and hope that the biological parent makes the right decision for the child. This act of kindness, love, and gratitude is something that people do knowing that they will receive no appreciation in return, that they will be criticized by others because of the situation, yet I do it and my father did it for the love and well being of the child.



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Stephen Pietrowski

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:09 am


i was communicating the Huger Project
i Became Love
the person i was taking to felt The Love



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Heath George

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:10 am


Love, Peace & Happiness



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Erica

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:14 am


Although I have witnessed many acts of kindness and compassion during my lifetime, the most profound one for me is the compassion that I have learned to give myself. So many times as a young woman I was my own worst enemy because I was so critical and impatient. These feelings of failure and anger often led to long periods of depression. After many years and experiences, the most profound and life-changing of which was becoming a mother, I feel now that I can love others as I was not able to before because of the love and compassion I am able to bring to my own life.



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Lisa G

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:15 am


I was in New York City on September 11, 2001 and have been here every day since then. It’s impossible to relate all of the acts of kindness I received, witnessed or gave in connection with that horrible day and its aftermath. But in some ways, the kindness of New Yorkers and all human during that time simply proved that humans are kind creatures at heart and that we learn how to hate and how to turn it into destruction.
Outside of 9/11, there are two acts of personal kindness which spring to mind.
Once, in the early 90s, a friend of mine and I were waiting for the subway at Port Authority. We were young and pretty girls, it was late at night, and the A/C/E subways were not terribly safe trains.
My friend and I were talking while waiting for a train. Apparently we disturbed the sleep of a homeless man sitting behind us. I didn’t realize he was there, but all of a sudden I felt someone hit me on the should and mumble something unintelligible.
My friend and I jumped up immediately. The homeless man simply turned over and went back to sleep. But in that split second, I noticed several teenage boys about 20 feets from us who instantly ran over to assist us, if necessary.
If anyone had seen these teens on the street, they would’ve thought they were an inner city gang. It would have been exceptionally easy for someone to judge them by their clothes and the color of their skin. But the moment they saw two people facing potential danger, they sprang to action without a moment’s hesitation.
We never even spoke to each other. Once they saw we were OK and that the homeless man was no threat, they went back to their conversation and we went back to ours. But I have never forgotten the kindness and gratitutde I experienced in that moment.
Probably the greatest act of kindness I’ve ever initiated is when I paid for the dinner of a stranger who had her purse stolen. The restaurant was fairly empty and a man brazenly came into the restaurant and stole the purse of a woman dining alone. He was sneaky. We all noticed him, but no one noticed him take her purse. It was quite a while after he left before she discovered it was missing and she was very distraught.
As she spoke with the manager and the police, I told my waitress that I’d like to pay for the woman’s meal. I also gave the waitress an additional $10 or $20 (I forget now) for the woman, in case she needed money to get home. I did not leave my name and did not need any repayment. I believed that the woman would be grateful and that she would remember the kindness and give it to others in need.
Thank you for holding this contest. While I’m sure everyone would like to see His Holiness in person, it’s wonderful to have an opportunity to reflect on the kindnesses in our lives and realize how much more we can always do.



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Dana

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:18 am


The most profound acts of kindness come to me from my best friend. She knows me so very well- my ‘devils and my deeds’, and she loves me without judgment or question every single day. My trust and love for her is unwavering. She has seen me through my absolute darkest hours-always there, always understanding, always finding something to do or say that would ameliorate my pain. I have no idea how I have come to be so fortunate, but I am beyond words thankful.



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Kim

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:21 am


This was truly the most profound act of kindness I’ve yet to witness in my 36 years on this planet:
My husband and I had been taking care of his Mother who had been suffering from dementia and pancreatic cancer for around two years before she became so ill that she ended up in a nursing home. After being there for only three months, we got the call. We arrived soon after along with his brother and sister-in-law. My husband sat by his mothers side for the entire day and into the night, stroking her hair, holding her hand, and most importantly, telling her it was OK for her to go–that we were all going to be okay and she was ok to let to go and be with her husband who had passed years earlier. I get choked up whenever I think about that day. He was very close to his Mom and as difficult as it was for him to lose her, he put his own hurt, sadness, anger and fear over losing her aside in order to make her transition as peaceful as possible.
I later asked him how he was able to find the resources within himself to handle that situation the way he did, without breaking down, becoming angry or falling into self-pity–all common reactions to such painful experiences. All he said was he felt that he was truly blessed to have been put in the position to help his Mother.
We had been together for close to ten years before that day (we were not married yet due to my fear of commitment) and I thought I knew all there was to know about him until then–I married him three months later on Thanksgiving Day–a day chosen for it’s symbolic meaning of thankfulness and blessings. We’ve been married for four years now and are happier than ever…



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Sheila Denner

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:28 am


The most profound act of kindness is also the simplest, that is, a smile that you produce or one that you notice on the face of another.
A smile signals happiness and joy. A smile is infectious, usually causing others to smile as well.
Simple and pure . Just one smile can light the world.



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John Daly

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:28 am


It’s hard to think of an individual who provided me with a single act of kindness; it seems everybody has an ulterior motive of some sort.
Someone once said to hide in plain sight, though, and when I look there, in plain sight, I see my mother and father. And again I can’t think of a single act: they gave and gave beyond any sensible amount.
I was a rich kid. Interesting, since my parents were poor.
I was well fed. Strange, sometimes my parents went without dinner.
I was treated unfairly, in that I was always given the benefit of the doubt.
And on and on. The love of a parent knows no bounds. Mine were exceptional in their ordinaryness. And I love them, and will forever.



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Jamie Heller

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:32 am


My boyfriend and I had our extra food wrapped to go from a local restaurant and were walking back home with it when we noticed a homeless man sitting on the church steps near our apartment. We looked at each other, and had the same thought immediately – to give the man our food. He didn’t speak much english, and seemed very confused. When we tried to explain that we wanted him to have the food, he thought we wanted him to share it with us and, using mostly body gestures, invited us to sit with him and eat! Here was a man who looked like he hadn’t eaten or bathed in weeks, and he was willing to share the little bit of food we were offering him with us! Here I was thinking I was being a stand up example of loving kindness, and this simple man needed my help. Quite the contrary – I needed his example of humility and humanity. The experience still evokes such incredible feelings of love and abundance, even years later.



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Stephanie

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:33 am


The most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed and/or received -
The tolerance, love and kindness I have witnessed and received on a continual basis over the last six years of my life has come from the strangest place. I found this place when I was on the verge of suicide; I hated myself, my life and the whole human race. I thought there was no loving kindness to be found anywhere in the world. I entered a room full of strangers and listened to their stories. I am consistently amazed by the generosity I receive from people I have just met there. I found hope for a better life. These wonderful people loved me until I learned to love myself. A few of these strangers have become my closest friends.
I am not unique in my discovery.
Everyday, in thousands upon thousands of locations world wide, people gather to help one another. There are lawyers, waitresses, doctors and janitors. There are Catholics, Baptists, Buddhists and agnostics. There are no dues or fees for membership. No political or religious affiliations. Every person is welcomed with open arms and hearts.
This kindness, love, generosity is available to everyone who seeks it out. I found it through a Twelve Step program. Since the 1940’s the twelve steps and twelve traditions have been used to treat alcoholism(Alcoholics Anonymous) and drug addiction(Narcotics Anonymous); other compulsive behaviors like gambling(Gamblers Anonymous), over eating(Overeaters Anonymous), spending (Debtors Anonymous), sex (Sexaholics Anonymous), Codependency, etc.
For me, the twelve steps have created a doorway through which I was able to transform myself and my life away from chaos, desperation and destruction. I consider this no minor miracle. Every time I attend a meeting, I see countless others experiencing their own miracles. We do it together, for we could not do it alone. I no longer hate my disease of alcoholism, I am thankful for it! Because through it, I have found spiritual transformation.
The rooms of recovery is where I have found the most profound acts of kindness I have ever witnessed and received.



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Anonymous

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:34 am


After nearly losing my eyesight, many surgeries later, I am able to see. Out of that period of not knowing if vision would return, I discovered all material things became of no consideration. Instead , the true need of others…one of wanting to be loved and understood became apparent and cyrstal clear. I am lovingly able and grateful to give want is needed to anyone I meet. Gratitude and kindness fill my heart.



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Sealife28

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:35 am


The greatest kindness I have ever witnessed comes from my father. When I was younger, I was aware that my mother and father were not getting along. It got to the point where any sentance uttered by either spouse provoked anger and raised tones. Thus my parents seperated. This was never handled legally, becuase my mother had lots of health problems and this way she could still have good health insurance through my dad. My father rented a home down the street so that he could still watch me grow up, while letting my mom have the house. In this way he made us his life. For 24 years I have watched as my father care for my mother (even though they do not talk), leaving fresh vegetables from his garden on the doorstep, bringing up the mail from a shared post office box, taking care of insurance matters, paying the property tax on the house, filing income tax returns (and still givng her half of the refund even though she does not work).



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Katie Beasley

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:36 am


Today, I donated blood. For me, the experience has personal rewards, but today was special, because I paid attention to the people donating around me, and took the time to think about the sacrifices they make.
Donating blood takes time, energy and is generally unpleasant, but all these people around me still come to literally give of themselves. I look at their faces in awe and amazement. These people were risking pain, inconvenience and side effects to help someone they will never meet. What selflessness! How utterly spiritual an experience!



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Kim

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:36 am


I was graced with a profound act of kindness that in it’s simplicity to some may seem without grand meaning. I believe that it’s purity and simplicity allowed my soul to meet itself, to see God’s love in a time when I was in so much pain , that I doubted my worth as a human being. This simple act of kindness was expressed to me by a fellow traveler, a teacher, a friend, who during one the darkest moments in my life, simply moved closely to my body that was physically writhing in pain, took my hands, took off his glasses, and looked deeply into my eyes witout condition, only with pure love. There was no personal gain, no agenda, only a simple desire to reflect pure love. In that moment, I saw beyond the boundaries of that room, beyond that moment in time, beyond the pain that had bound me to despair, into a place of pure love. I am forever grateful for that moment, and for his eyes. They provided me with a glimpse of the eternal, essential truth. We are loved beyond measure. We are loved beyond words.



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Jocelyne Lavoie

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:42 am


The most profound act of kindness witnessed or received.
I have been called to move around a lot in my life. I also have worked in many different types of environnement. When I decided to leave or when I was laid off I liked to give each person I worked with, a little card containing 3 qualities that I thought they manifested. I was just “Spreading a Little Kindness” not looking for anything or expecting any kind of thanks. In one of the last courses that I attended, I did the same thing at the culmination of the course. We were all meeting for supper a couple of hours later & during supper all the other members gave me little pieces of paper containing 3 qualities that they thought I had.
Wow!! What a feeling. I had no idea that such a small gesture had a such a profound impack on a person. It certainly had a profound impack on me.
P.S. I would invite all the readers to do the same. It takes a very small amount of time. All I did was put everybody’s name on a sheet of paper & just let the quality come to me & jot it down. Once I had everybody covered I would go out and buy the cards & write them out.
For those people who made my life difficult, I applied myself even harder to find genuine qualities for them. They had the quality to make me look & develop my endurance. If you keep at it you will find new qualities too. Let’s face it, those people are the ones who need it the most & they are the ones who help you the most to become a better person by helping you work on your patience, compassion and ALL those loving qualities.
Thank you for reading me. Jocelyne



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Rose K.

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:44 am


The most profound effect on me from an act of kindbess was when I was 17 years old. I had been struggling with addiction since 14 years old and my mother had thrown me out of her house. I tried to get clean thru a 12 step program and was walking to a 12 step meeting place. It was dead winter and blowing wind. I had no where to sleep that night and thoughts of suicide were non stop. As I walked, a man that I had seen at many meetings pulled up in his car and asked if I needed a ride. I got in and told him my situation. He brought me to a Holiday Inn and got me a room. I accepted, and figured I would have to do whatever it took to keep a roof over my head that night. Even if it meant sleeping with him. He , however , never came and knocked on the door. He called me on the phone and said he would be there in the morning and we would figure out a solution to my problem. He did pick me up the next day with his young daughter in the car and from that time on he was my mentor..my teacher…my friend. I went to work with him,and just sat and listened, he helped me get my first apartment…I stayed clean for many years. I asked him HOW can I return what you have done for me ? I didn’t even know how to balance a checkbook or pay a bill. He showed me everything I need to survive in the world. He simply said “There will be a time when someone will need your help, and you will pay it forward”.
I am now 44 years old and have never forgotten what he taught me. He never made inappropriate advances . He never asked for anything. How I love this man and pay it forward every chance I get. He did not know at the time he saved my life that night. A simple act of kindess changed one lost soul’s destiny. I am happy to give 5 bucks to a person who is lost…a ride in the cold…a couch to crash on. I am clean and happy in my SOUL. I LOVE working with people that were like me. Thank you Marty…..



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gloria kaminski

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:44 am


My friends gave us a car. Instead of trading it in, they put a gigantic ribbon on their Saturn and gave it to us as a gift. All they basically said was “you needed a car and we had an extra one.” They smiled, we hugged. They never mentioned it again. Whenever a passenger commented on my new, used car I told them the story and had the additional pleasure of watching their faces express their surprise, happiness, and often the “Wow!” We no longer have that car, but the story alone elicits a smile.



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Martha Seidel

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:47 am


Over 13 years ago, I had knee surgery and was home on crutches just a couple of days after the surgery. My son and his wife and 1 1/2 year old son were living with my husband and I. In the evening, my grandson was asleep, my son was working and my husband out of town. My daughter-in-law had her 7 year old neice spending the night at our house and I asked my daughter-in-law if she would go to the grocery store to get a couple of things for me and she agreed.
It was 9 pm and dark outside. As she left in my car and drove out the driveway, my small grandson came running up the stairs and did not come to me when I called his name. He must have been sleep walking. He went to the front door and opened it.
As I was on crutches, I called to his cousin to come and help me get him back in the house. As she was really sleeping soundly, I asked for my angels to help me get my grandson back into the house safely as I couldn’t run. We live in a cul-de-sac and then only a couple of houses from a fairly traveled street. (My grandson is deaf and it was not known at the time that this was the case).
When I got down to the intersection I did not know which direction to go. One was was straight ahead to a park (we went there often), to the right or to the left. When I looked to the left, towards a major thoroughfare street, I saw a large figure holding something white. I hobbled as fast as I could towards this figure and saw that a very tall man, with blond curly hair was holding my grandson in his arms. I called my grandsons name and saw that it was him, safe in a strangers arms.
As I approached them, the gentleman said that after eating dinner he had the sensation that he was supposed to go take a walk and didn’t know why, but that he should. It was then that he saw my grandson running down the street. He picked him up and that’s when I saw them.
The stranger carried my grandson the two and 1/2 blocks back to our home and when we got inside I hugged my grandson so much and thanked the man with all my heart for saving my grandson from who knows what. After hugging my grandson, I turned again to thank the stranger for his help and he was gone. I looked outside to see if I could see him and he was nowhere in sight. To this day I have not seen this man in my neighborhood and do not know if he was a real angel or an earth angel, I just know that this was the most profound act of kindness I have ever received. I have since tried to continue to pass along random acts of kindness to my fellow humans on an everyday basis.



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Kristi

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:50 am


The most profound act of kindness I have given and received is time and a kind ear. I try at every opportunity to listen to people who need someone to just listen to them. Last week at work I spent time with a customer and listened to her talk about her recent back surgery, depression, and family. When we parted company she hugged me and thanked me for listening to her. Yesterday I sat and talked with a guy who other people at my job tend to steer clear of because he looks like he’s had a rough life. In reality he is a kind, creative, interesting man. There have also been many times where I have sat and talked with children and teenagers for hours. They have so many emotions and thoughts and oftentimes adults will not give them a non-judgmental ear, if they listen at all.



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nikki hartman

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:55 am


kindness should not be an experience we dig up from our pasts but a state in which we live. A single act of kindness does good for a moment in linear time but holds echos in our hearts that we now share as memories. If each breath was given in kindness we would echo in unison and continue to sing beauty and love forever.
Each story i read before writing this post reminded me that i too have many many memories of kindness beyond the usual pleasentries of society based man-kind.
And then tears filled my eyes and my heart. How can we truly seperate individual acts of kindness… I gave up my television many years ago (about 7 now) and with that i have found beauty in places i would never had ventured if i were distracted by this source of entertainment.
I have watched and dined with those who eat from the trash and been treated to 5 start meals by those who live within the means. The greatest act of kindness in my experience is to watch those without. They share ALL they have, they need not the distractions of man but find comfort in their scraps and the remains of natural life. I have seen train jumping kids remove their coats and hooded sweatshirts to cover a sleeping man without a blanket. I know there is kindness in every breath we take- if only we could teach each other how to exhale the same kind energy- echoing with love, trust and faith…



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Jennifer Rivers

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:58 am


Several years ago, a friend of mine from the Channel Islands, off the coast of London, gave me a small pink stone; rose quartz. She told me it was filled with magical powers of healing. As years went on, and I became a teacher, I shared this “magic” healing stone with my fourth grade class. One day in October, returning to the classroom after being absent the day before because of illness, I noticed that the stone was missing. Not wanting to single anyone out in the class, I mentioned the stone was gone, and I’d love it if whoever “found it” would anonymously leave the stone on my desk, while I wasn’t there, to save them from embarrassent. The next day I looked on my desk and there was no stone. No stone the day after, or the day after that, or the day after that. I never mentioned the stone at all to the class again that year, figuring someone either really wanted it, or one of the janitors had accidentally found it and thrown it in the trash.
June arrived, and on the last day of school, several children came up to me and said “Chris has the stone! Chris has the stone!” Not understanding right away what they were saying, I went into the classroom, and there was Chris with the stone in his hand. He looked at me guiltily and said “I’m sorry I took the stone. I felt really bad after and was to embarrassed to give it back. I wanted you to have it back because your friend gave it to you.”
I was touched that Chris had decided to be honest on this last day of school, our last day together as a class. When I wrote the thank you letters to students a week later, for all the beautiful gifts they gave me, I put the stone in Chris’s letter. I told him I was so happy that he’d returned it to me, and how proud I was of his honesty, and that I felt he should keep the stone.



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Craig Privett

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:58 am


Hey Everybody,
my name is Craig and I am a recovering drug addict. I have been struggling with addiction most of my life. I am 46 years old. I have been involved with Zen Buddhism since around 2004.
I happen to have 127 days clean today. So one has to imagine a person like myself attempting to sit Zazen while under the influence of various chemical substances….not a pretty sight, and I might add it wasn’t very peaceful inside as well. Very difficult trying to incorporate precepts in your life when you are “in the game” as they say.
Anyhow on to my experience of total kindness which a group of people bestowed upon me.
My last run or stretch of time using drugs was destroying my life. With my “infinite wisdom” I decided to try Heroin at 45. “BRILLIANT” as the man says on the beer commercial. Meditation and living with spiritual precepts in my life had all but disapeared. I was a broken human being ,lying cheating with those who so dearly loved me. I was out of options,out of money and running out of time. Spiritually Bankrupt I decided to go to a crisis center run by Catholic Charities. I have to admit I was skeptical at first. Being someone who is somewhat anti Christian Religious establishment.
These beautiful people who fed me, cared for me, gave me Love for which I had none for myself, saved my life. If not for them I would not be writing this today. I have witnessed their kindness not just for myself but with countless others. Giving for the sake of giving, without any accolades. Wonderful,amazing human beings giving of themselves everyday to the still sick and suffering addict.
I am forever grateful for those who give of themselves so freely.
I also thank you for giving me an opportunity to share my experience of kindness.
Peace and Love to All,
Craig



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Marilyn

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:00 pm


My teacher has taught me to see with clarity, to hear without judgment, to speak with compassion, and to love with an open heart. He has done this with patience, wisdom and humor. The measure of this kindness is boundless. The result of which, is without measure. It is with profound gratitude and humility that these gifts are accepted.
Namaste



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Michelle Rowland

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:07 pm


It was 42 yrs ago. Born 6 wks premature, my baby was just 5 wks old & sleeping no more than 90 min at a time. Without a functioning “network” (or the minimal empathy of my husband) to help or even advise, I was desperately sleep deprived & more than a little bewildered by those first weeks of parenthood. My baby was healthy and truly beautiful but my still-much-vaunted “maternal instincts” seem to have become clogged somewhere in the utter fatigue of getting through each day.
When acquaintences, and even friends, saw me with my still-tiny son, their response was pretty consistent: “Don’t you just LOVE him so much?”
“Well, uh . . . ” But I learned to nod in response andto comment no further.
In a grocery store with my baby one day, I encountered a wonderfully distinguished-looking white-haired gentleman who stopped to look at the tiny baby in the grocery cart. “Ah,” he said, “your baby is very young still.”
“Yes, he is.”
I readied myself to respond to the inevitable comment. But it didn’t come. Instead a gentle question, “And you’re hardly used to him yet?”
It was so unexpected, I answered truthfully. Struggling against unbidden tears, “Not quite yet, I suppose.”
Gently, so gently, he stroked his long fingers against the baby’s cheek. “Nor he to you, I think. But you’ll grow and learn together.”
Clearly it is a moment I have never forgotten. And my son and I did go on, in fact, to “learn together.”
Perhaps more to the point, I have made it a point in my life ever since that day to respond to any woman who has recently given birth to a child and who may be feeling just a bit less enthusiastic than what may be perceived as the current “ideal.”



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-H-

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:08 pm


To be brief:
I have kidney disease and have progressively lost kidney function. Mine is now down to 30%. Critical level is 10%.
I largely kept this to myself and happened to mention disliking all the medical appointments I recently had when my friend of 15 years asked why I had so many. As soon as I told him the diagnosis he immediately volunteered one of his. No questions and no fear.
(I am a non-drinker, non-smoker, and have never suffered addictions.)



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Christopher Smith

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:14 pm


I have a multitude of obstacles to overcome. The majority of these obstacles stem from my youth, my own self-destructive behaviors and the pain I have caused to those around me. I am in the process of change; in my case, it has been a very long time coming and I am not there yet. I have reached out for help. In the majority of cases, the help offered did not feel right or true to my nature. For that, those offering help and support felt there was nothing to be done and hence have walked away…given up on me. The last several years have been fell of rain, clouds and darkness. Within this darkness that has surrounded me from the outside, there was no where to turn except inside. There, I saw a light, a flame that was only a flicker. I have nurtured this flame and it steadily grows stronger. There are times when it diminishes, but it is still there. No matter what others say, how they feel about me and my circumstances, or how they mock me and treat me as a pariah, I am determined to keep nurturing this flame to become a light to guide me to my highest self.
The act of kindness I have received most has been the kindness I have given to myself.



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Monetta Roberts

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:19 pm


I was the recipient of the most profound act of kindess that I can recall. Funny thing is, though, that at the time I thought it was I providing the kindess.
It’s been seven years now, but a running partner and I trained on a course that was on the far side of town from where I live. It was a very cold February morning–possibly the coldest we’ve seen since then. After training, I knew I was late for work and would have to hurry to shower, dress and make the one-hour commute to work. The training partner stayee behind to train longer. As I left the park, a small puppy stoically sat at a crossroads, steadily looking down one road, as though someone would be coming back for him. He appeared to be starving—all his ribs poked out, and his belly was bloated. It was heartwrenching. Still, the less caring part of my mind told me I did not have one moment to spare and it also told me that when my training partner came along a bit later, he would surely bring this needy creature home.
So sure of this did I feel, that I decided we would name him Piggy. Piggy, because he had only a small strip of hair on his spine and the rest of his body was bright pink, as though he were sunburned. Just as I was leaving the house for work, my partner arrived home and I asked him where was the dog? He had seen it, but he believed I would be angry if he brought little piggy home! Oh no! I asked him to please return at once and bring the poor animal home and tend to it. He did go back, but Piggy was nowhere to be found.
The coldest weekend followed and I feared the very worst until we had a chance to return. He had taken refuge in a burned out house, and was still alive, against all odds, but he was so weak and sick it hurt my heart. We scooped him up, took him to a vet, who recommended putting him to sleep—but I could not. Piggy had endured so much while waiting for rescue.
It took a long while and a lot of trips to the vet, but Piggy finally overcame the heartworms, bacterial skin infection and mange and grew a beautiful coat of hair. Now he’s a very happy dog, and I cannot even remember life without him.
Piggy happens to be a bread of dog that has a very bad reputation, even though he craves love, and living with him, and walking him in public, he done so much to teach me the lessons of patient, of acceptance, and of loving a being that perhaps no one else ever would’ve. He’s taught me that changing my old rountine in order to give him the love and exercise he craves is well worth the things I no longer have as much time to do. And Piggy has taught me responsibility—REAL responsibility; for if I were ever to let him loose with other dogs around, it would be bad for me, for the other dog, and just as importantly, the powers that be would likely put him down.
So while I thought I was saving a starving puppy, now seven years later, I think Piggy is saving me, by opening my heart and by teaching me acceptance, every single day.
Thanks,
Monetta Roberts



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Lisa La Paz

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:22 pm


My most profound gift of kindness has been from my friend at work who has introduced me to Reiki and Ascension. I feel reborn and much more capable of seeing the goodness in others as well as accepting my own value as a person. Learning that we are all One and being able to recognize the shortcomings of others as mistakes I have made myself and knowing not to take things or myself too seriously. I had the delusion that everyone else had it all together and that I was somehow lacking. Now I see that I have all I need and that no matter what – I (and all of us) are loving and worthy in our own way.



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Angela Morin

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:23 pm


My goal in life is to help dogs in need. I started my own rescue, adopting dogs from the high-kill animal shelter then train them and find new loving forever homes. I came across this cute little puppy and decided to name him Toby. Because of his breed (Pit Bull mix) He would need the training necessary to be adopted out. Toby soon developed distemper, kennel cough, coccidia and roundworms. This poor puppy was going through so much suffering, I decided the best thing for him would be to put him to sleep. It was very heartbreaking for me and I decided that I should quit rescuing all together, as I didn’t want to go through the pain of anymore dogs suffering. I have a page specially for Toby on a website, and people of who I don’t even know would write beautiful messages and poems to cheer me up. Their hearts poured out to me and they sent pictures of Toby with Angel wings. That really touched my heart. Here they don’t know me from Jack on the street, but they embraced me as if I was their own child or sibling. That has taught me there still is good, compassionate people out there.They said I was an Angel too, for rescuing and I shouldn’t stop there. I have a new foster coming in this weekend. Thanks to them, I will continue to save dog’s lives. They are my biggest support!



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M

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:34 pm


I stood next to my mother as she pushed my father in a wheelchair in the halls of the chiropractic hospital where he had been living for years with an advanced case of Multiple Sclerosis. At this point, he was barely able to sit up and had to have his head held up with a belt that was attached to the chair, otherwise it would just plop down.
We had to keep wiping his mouth, because the saliva would pour out of the sides of his mouth since he was no longer able to completely close it.
As we walked through the corridors of the hospital, we came upon newcomers. A young man was pushing his young wife in a wheelchair, as she held a small suitcase in her lap. Both wore the cheery attitudes and smiling countenances of young people undeterred by illness.
When my mother replied ‘Hello, how are you,’ to their greeting, the young woman told her she’d be staying for a short while because she had Multiple Sclerosis. When she asked what was wrong with my father, my mother just answered, ‘Oh, they don’t seem to know, but I’m sure it’s not what you have.’ She chose to lie to a complete stranger instead of robbing the young woman of her hope of recovery.
That was one of the most compassionate acts I have ever witnessed. I don’t know what ever happened to that young woman.
But I was never the same.



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brian

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:35 pm


Following many years as an executive within the food industry, we travelled and lived in many places including 3rd world countries, and always worth remembering the most were the many acts of kindness. There was always the natural beauty to be thankful for, but what always stays with you is the witnessing of kindness. This has left such an impact on me that I feel it impossible not to follow through with this every single chance I have. It should be natural to show kndness throughout any given day. This is why we are given the day. Being aware of someone elses need for a hand or a kind word or some form of comfort should be foremost on any given day.
Having suffered from a stroke 4 years ago, I was left with addiction issues and was barely employable. Recovery has been the focus of my life now. The help that I received from too many people to list here was unimaginable. My family, no matter how difficult was always there to give me direction and hope. Part of my recovery is giving. I have since been within a program where I can now offer help and hope to those in detox programs. What goes around comes around. Give kindness and you will recieve kindness.



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Traci Bailey

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:36 pm


I have suffered from severe facial pain for ten years. I went to sixteen doctors before finding Dr. Wesley Shankland in Columbus, Ohio. He is a leading facial pain expert in the world. Before seeing him, I was on the brink of suicide after doctors told me it was all in my head, or it was stress, or various other things. I have tendonitis of three ligaments in my face, on both sides. He is now treating me and expects after three months that I will be at 100%.
The most profound act of kindness was the day after he saw me the first time, he called me himself to check on me and offer his support and encouragement. I was blown away by a member of the medical community that also had a huge heart. Not only did he help me stay encourage but this man saved my life. I was planning to commit suicide on New Year’s Eve 2007. He will always be my hero.



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Annie

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:44 pm


One summer in our backyard I spied a chipping sparrow’s nest in a rose bush by the driveway. Only one egg hatched, and we watched with delight as the mother bird did all she could to tend to her only child. After a particularly bad storm with very high winds, the nest was damaged. The baby had reached fledgling stage although it still couldn’t fly, and since there was no nest to be kept safe in, for several nights I took it in the house, returning it in early morning. The mother seemed all right with this and happily took over her job after the baby was back. One day a neighbor’s cat jumped the fence and began meandering through the yard. I went outside to shoo it away, but before I got to it, I watched the mother bird fly over to the cat, drop down close to it, spread out one wing as if it were broken, and captured the cat’s attention. She then led that cat in a direction away from her baby, acting like an injured bird but staying just beyond the cat’s reach. Any time the cat pounced, she was up in the air, only to resume her injured act again, a few feet further toward the fence. She eventually flew over the fence, to the cat followed. Once the cat was on the other side, mother bird returned swiftly to the baby sparrow and ushered it to a better place of hiding. Instinct perhaps, but in the face of danger, I’ve never seen a greater act of kindness.



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Maria

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:49 pm


Years ago, my oldest son had finally saved up enough money to buy a necklace he had seen in one of the markets in our small town. We parked our car and walked down the main street stopping a few times to look at diffrent things, while walking we passed a homeless man, my attention was on showing my youngest son how to put pennies on the train tracks before a train comes (they get flatened, I didn’t notice what my oldest was doing. When we finally made it to the shop he said he didn’t have the money to buy the necklace anymore. At first I thought he lost it but then he told me he had given it to the homeless man, that he really didn’t need the necklace. He was 10 at the time, and I still tear up when I think of this.



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Debbie

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:52 pm


This past summer, my husband was undergoing extensive diagnostic testing for lymphoma. He was, and remains ill. As you can imagine, we were very distraught. The love of my life was sick and I was learning there was nothing I could do but watch and live it out with him. I thought I was stronger and was surprised at how deeply his suffering hurt me. We figured out the priorities pretty quick. Lots of things we thought so important suddenly fell by the wayside.
One thing that didn’t was our small horse farm, Samadhi. I’ve had horses all my life but a recent serious disability left me unable to do many of the harder things around the farm. My wonderful husband, though he doesn’t ride, was always happy to help out. We enjoy Samadhi and we do become happily absorbed in what we do here. But make no mistake; there is a lot of hard work associated with these beautiful horses and it was becoming increasingly more difficult to get that done.
Besides not feeling well, my husband wasn’t up to helping out as much as he had. He felt bad about that but I assured him it was all fine, just fine. Take it easy, please, just go rest. He was tired, worn out, and I was struggling to keep up the farm. My young son was trying to help as much as possible.
June came. Around here, that’s when they cut and bale hay, a main feed for the horses. Now, anyone who has ‘done hay’ knows how much work it is. Here, I’m lucky enough to have a local farmer deliver the load of hay to my barn but it’s our job to get it in the loft. And when he calls, a year’s worth of hay has to go in our loft. In the past, my little 115 lb body could lift and stack the bales with ease; I never shirked the tough end of having horses. But with this leg, I just can’t do it anymore.
As I awaited the farmer’s call, I was troubled over how I’d ever get it put up in the loft. I sure didn’t want my husband trying to do it. My son could only help just so much. I’d gotten local kids to help in the past but if they helped once, they never came back the second season no matter how much food and beverage I offered, or how much money I would pay them. Just too much work, I guess.
One afternoon, two young men in black pants, white shirts and ties came to the door. They asked if we could talk for a while. “Mormons,” I thought. I told them this was not a good time, that I had a lot on my mind because of everything that was going on with my husband, and wasn’t in the mood for that sort of discussion. (It was a particularly bad day, I’d been crying, giving in to worry)
One of the young men glanced at the barn and asked if we had horses out there. I said we did, three of them, one Morgan very old at 27. He said grew up on a farm in Idaho and as a missionary, he missed home. We both agreed it was a lot of work and somehow I mentioned that in fact I was waiting for hay to come in. We laughed over the fact that it always seems be ready on the hottest day of the year. Then, he asked if we needed help with the hay.
I had to laugh. Did he know what doing hay meant? I mean, it wasn’t like we were taking in 10,000 bales but it’s hot, dusty, sweaty labor that leaves a person with plenty of sore muscles. He said “Ma’am, back home we ran cattle, had horses, grew crops and lots of hay. I know what doing hay is.” I asked about his companion. The other gentleman said he’d be just fine. He handed me a card with some phone numbers on it. He said, “Call me when the farmer says he bringing your hay and we’ll help you.” I asked if he was serious. He said he was but I had my doubts.
A few days passed and the farmer’s call came. Sure enough, it was a hot day. The farmer said he’d deliver a loft-full the next morning at 10:30 if that was alright. Yes, that would be fine.
Suddenly, I was frantic. Who would help? My son was barely able to slide the bales let alone lift them. I didn’t want my husband in the loft due to his condition. My other son couldn’t get the day off and there was no one to help. I was frustrated that I couldn’t do it myself and cried. Then, I remembered the card the young missionary had given me. Did they really mean it? Were they for real? I was about to find out.
I called the young Elder (odd title, eh?) and asked if he remembered me. He did and asked if the hay was in. I said it was and did they really mean it when they offered to help? They did, and said they’d be there at 10:30 sharp.
I don’t know how long it took us to get the hay stacked in that loft but between the elders and my young son and a daughter who had to go to work after helping only 10 minutes or so, the job got done.
I offered the young men lunch but they declined. Cool water, also declined respectfully. I said I felt bad they had worked so hard and wanted to do something for them. One of the young men said, “Ma’am, we actually want to thank you for such a wonderful opportunity to serve. In fact, this was the best one yet. If we took something for it, it wouldn’t be like we were really helping from the heart, you know?” I said, “At least take a dip in the pool; we have extra suits. Surely you’d like to get that chaff off of you, cool off a bit, and you probably don’t like that ‘farm’ smell.” He told me he’d like to smell that way as long as he could because it reminded him of home. Besides not being allowed to swim while on the two-year missionary venture, they could only call home twice a year… Christmas and Mother’s Day. I said, in that case, I had a very dirty horse that could use a good brushing. (It was the only thing I could think of)
We all went down into the cool stable area. I took out my black horse and handed the Elder a brush. (the horse wasn’t really dirty, just some shavings in his mane) His eyes lit up and he set to work brushing away with the confidence of a young man who has brushed many horses and liked it.
Meanwhile, we began to talk about our beliefs. I thought, “Oh boy, here it comes… the push.” But the push never came.
I told them we practiced Zen Buddhism here at Samadhi and he told me they were missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of LDS.
My son brought out his guitar and played for us as we sat on bales of hay in the cool alley way. That black horse was as sleek as could be, and clearly enjoying the attention he was getting. My husband and I enjoyed talking with them about the similarities of our beliefs and the goodness of lovingkindness and awareness. We shared a few life stories, then it was time to go.
And that was it. No literature, no push to change each other. It was all about kindness right from the heart. I’ll never forget that day… we had a great need for help and it appeared in the form of two young men at our front door. They gave of themselves unconditionally with no strings attached and taught us a little lesson about taking things just as they are without thinking things into them. They thanked us again for the chance to help and said if we needed any fence work or more hay brought in to just call. I thanked them for reminding me that it is truly in giving that we receive, and that in the middle of a world that often seems violent and scary, there is sweet goodness, sometimes right at the front door.



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Sherry Holop

posted October 8, 2007 at 12:53 pm


4 years ago I was introduced to someone that needed my help. His wife had committed suicide 3-4 months before and he had her new Mazda Miata parked in their garage unable to look at it. I responded immediately, I understood his pain. I to had lost my significant other 3 years prior to this and wanted to be of help. Since I sell cars, I knew what to do. I called and assured him that I would run an ad and sell the vehicle and then give him his money.It was my pleasure to asisst him. He was grateful. As it turn out,it was inconvenient for me to show the vehicle since it was at his house, about 20 miles from mine. I called again and suggested that I pick up the Miata and leave my vehicle with him until it was sold. He agreed. I went to his home, when he opened the door we just looked at each other. He invited me in and I shared with him that I felt like I knew him from another life time. I did sell his vehicle and we became friends. He was quite ill. He had throat cancer and was unable to eat without a feeding tube. Supposedly he was getting better. We taught each other alot. He did not survive. During his stay at the hospital 6 months later, I was there. I shared with him that although he was going to die, I was enjoying every moment we had together. He smiled, nodded his head and made the expression as to say me too. When he started his journey it was like an outer body experience for me. I felt so elevated. I felt so grateful that this man was in my life and that I could show him the way. When he passed, I left the hospital and entering the hospital was an expecting mother in labor. I knew that I needed to see life starting after death. When I got back to his home, there was a beautiful rainbow right over the house. Again, I got a special message. We were both o.k.. He left me his home which is where I live now.



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J. Holmes

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:07 pm


As a Ride Coach for the California AIDS Ride, it was my job to encourage registrants to train and raise money for the 560 mile bike ride. One week before the ride, I called a rider named Kevin and he answered the phone in tears, his partner of 12 years had died of AIDS 2 days before. I talked to him about his grief, his partner’s life, and suggested that riding his bike from San Francisco to Los Angeles might be healing for him. He said he would think about it, but he wasn’t sure he could manage it.
On night 6 of the ride Kevin ran up to me. “I had thank you for encouraging me to come to the ride.” At sunset he and his friends spread some of his partner’s ashes at the beach in Santa Barbara. At that moment, a pod of dolphins started leaping out of the waves, and he said he felt the palpable presence of God, his partner and the love of the universe.
We were both crying, and I thanked him for coming to tell me. I did my job in encouraging him, but it was his kindness to come and find me, in a camp of thousands of people, to let me know that I had helped him – that made the experience complete. I never saw him again, but I will always remember the rider, his partner and the way our small efforts can lead to profound gifts of healing.



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Paige Beckwith

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:08 pm


I’m a Registered Nurse and used to work on a Hematology/Oncology floor for a very large children’s hospital in Texas. This is the floor where the children with various cancers, and blood disorders come for treatment. During my time there, I grew very close to a little boy named Roy, and especially close to his mother Diana. Roy was battling leukemia, had had a bone marrow transplant and was in and out of the ICU. During his visits to the floor, I was the only nurse he would let “poke” – as he called it. This kid was such a character. I could see all of his past lives of wisdom oozing out of his character and his eyes. He once was taken to a golf game, and at 6 years old, stole the golf cart and took it for a joy ride (thank goodness he wasn’t harmed, but he sure had a blast). For his Make A Wish, he wanted a limo and a thousand dollars. He bought tons of stuffed animals, which he then donated to the sick children at the hospital. See, wisdom and kindness beyond his years. Towards the end of his little life his mother told me that she woke up one night and his hands were up in the air and he was praying and saying something about God (he was a Catholic). His future was grim and eventually his mother decided to take him home to die. We tried to get her to go home with nursing support (hospice), but she wanted her family to spend this time with him without outside people. In the beginning there was no pain, and he continued to play and be Roy up until almost the very end. Then pain medicines were needed to help him cope with his day.
The act of kindness? Diana, his mother, called me at work one morning and told me Roy was dying and that he was asking to talk to me. I rushed back to a private office where I could talk to him. His words were inaudible. When a child dies of leukemia the white blood cells overwhelm the body and eventually cause the brain to shift and then death soon follows. I told him I loved him and spoke to his mother a little bit and then hung up the phone. He died two minutes later, and Diana his wonderful, strong woman, allowed ME, his favorite nurse, to be a part of his last moments of life as Roy. She and Roy gave me the biggest gift I’ve ever received…to be a part of his very peaceful, loving death, the way he wanted it.
After Roy’s death, Diana visited me at the hospital and brought more things Roy wanted to donate to the unit. She also had with her a huge paper bag full of things Roy wanted me to have after he passed. Can you believe that a six year old child thought about MY feelings and gave me things he wanted ME to have after his death? He will always be a part of my soul. That child and his mother taught me so much about living life, peace and the act of giving to others.



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Loretta

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:16 pm


I had to run away from my (ex-now) abusive, mentally & spiritually disturbed husband, carrying my two toddler sons at 2am. We walked & walked, and we hid behind neighborhood bushes, so that he wouldn’t see us. I had felt my sons & my own life was in danger, and we finally made it to a major intersection. We made it to a corner café and I had no money. This woman sensed my despair, and gave me a dime to call & wake my grandmother, and afterwards, this same woman insisted to drive us to my grandmothers house. I was in shock & wept. She drove us to safety, and insisted to take her money ($5). I never returned to that man ever again, and to this day I am still divorced-27 years later!
Animals act of kindness:
One morning, driving to work, on one of Houston’s main thoroughfare, I witnessed a deceased dog (stricken by a car), being nudged to the curb by another loving & kind dog. Beautiful…



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Bonnie Chapman

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:19 pm


In the waiting room of my doctor’s office one day, I witnessed a woman accompanying an elderly woman into the waiting room. I assumed that the younger woman was a daugher or relative until she asked the older woman if she needed anything else before she left. Upon receiving a “Yes, thank you so much” the younger woman took her leave. The elderly lady then started telling the receptionist that the woman had begun a conversation with her on the bus. When she discovered the older lady was headed to a doctor’s appointment (which was up a somewhat steep hill from the bus stop), she offered to accompany the older woman up to the facility and walk her inside to ensure she made it safely to her appointment. The younger woman was a total stranger who actually “listened” to an older person (how many times do we pretend to listen but are actually thinking of other things?) and offered to help her in order to make sure she made it to her doctor’s appointment. I would imagine the stranger may have missed her next bus to whatever location she was headed, but she took the time to help the elderly woman, showing a caring and compassion that brought tears to my eyes. The elderly woman’s face was shining as she was telling the story, and the beautiful smile on her face was a reflection of the appreciation of someone’s kind deed and a joyful result of what can happen when we show love and kindness for others.



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Mary Ann Pungello-Lonesky

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:27 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have received in my life is the acceptance of my parents (who adopted me at the age of 2). In spite of the madness that I brought into their lives probably from the age of 13 until I was 30 my mother and father never abandoned me. I walked away from them as a result of my own self inflicted self centered fear, shame and guilt, but never-the-less, they were still there for me when I did turn to them for help. Even after bringing them some peace between the age of 30 and 38, I still managed to sabotage my freedom from addiction and again, needed my parents help. Although they were hurt and somewhat upset with my choices, they were still there for me. My mom was a stoic woman who wore the pants in the family when I was growing up. My mom was unable to verbally or physically express tender love and affection, and although I wondered in my earlier years whether she loved me or not, I have since come to understand that she most certainly did love me. I have to say that not only was I the recipient of kindness but I have been blessed to watch the kindness that has been bestowed upon my mother who has Alzheimers’/Dementia. To witness a woman who seemed to be so bitter and angry turn into an innocent, playful childlike elder I know is a gift of kindness that God has granted her. As my father and I witness this transformation I can say that not only has my mother been blessed with kindness, but that both my father and I have been as well for it is not really the one who has Alzheimers’/Dementia who suffers but rather the family who are no longer remembered by their loved one. My father and I are so grateful that God has seen fit for my mother to finally be rid of her rigidness and feel free to live as a child.



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Sean

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:31 pm


When I returned from Iraq in 2003, I discovered that the woman I loved and had been living with was having an affair in my very own home. I became very depressed and one night in a drunken stupor went over to her new apartment and confronted her and her new boyfriend, waving a pistol around and demanding to know what I had done to deserve this. I was arrested and sent to prison for two years.
I was virtually shell-shocked, in something of a catatonic state at this, the lowest point in my life. I had been accepted to law school, but now upon my return from Iraq it seemed as if my life was effectively over. About a year later I happened across “We’re All Doing Time” by Bo Lozoff and found a passage that changed my life, “If you seek to understand the entire universe, you will understand nothing. If you seek to understand only yourself, you will understand the entire universe.” I was struck as if by a thunderbolt and immediately saw back over my entire life, and saw the common thread running through all my misery and discontent: I had sought happiness, my very identity, in the “things” I sought to surround myself with. I had mistakenly thought that if I simply had the “things” happy people have, then I too would be happy. But the trap was that I had made myself dependent on these “things” outside of myself over which I could hold no real influence instead of looking within myself.
Here at the lowest point of my life, I learned my greatest lesson, a lesson I could not have learned had I not lost all the “things” I surrounded myself with as a wall and become receptive to the message. And so, in keeping with the fine tradition of things not always being as they seem, I would have to say that what I perceived to be my ex-girlfriend’s cruelty, has in fact turned into the greatest gift I have ever received.



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Karen

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:40 pm


Three years ago my mother passed away after an extended illness. I was an only child and we had no family to assist us. By the time my mother passed away, I was both physically and mentally exhausted. As I was engaged in the painful chore of packing her clothes for donation, sorting through old photographs, reading her important papers and the birthday and get well cards she saved, the doorbell to the apartment rang. By the time I opened it, no one was there. I caught a glimpse of Lucy, the petite Puerto Rican woman who was our upstairs neighbor turning the corner to go back up the steps. I called her name but she did not stop. Then I looked down. On the doormat she had left a pot of chicken and rice stew and a glass of iced tea covered with plastic wrap. I took the meal inside, sat at the kitchen table and wept. That was one of the greatest acts of kindness anyone has ever offered to me, and no meal has ever tasted as delicious since.



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Donna-Lee Phillips

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:41 pm


In May of 1999, my companion of twenty years died,leaving me disabled and alone in what he had hoped would be a caring senior trailer park. I had survived a Traumatic Brain Injury in 1984, and he had been my whole connection with the “outside world” since that day.
We had moved into the trailer park because he believed someone would be there to help when he died… and he knew it would be soon. It was. He died two weeks after moving in. He wanted to get me “planted on my own feet” but we didn’t have time.
The place proved to be The Trailer Park from Hell. It was perhaps the worst place he could have left me, although I hope he never knew that. As I tried to put the pieces of my life together alone for the first time in twenty years, I found that instead of understanding and support, I was to be hounded, harassed and tormented for the next many months.
By fall, I was a skeleton, emotionally battered, feeling helpless and lost, and diagnosed with PTSD. I have little memory of the last months, but I’m told I weighed 90 lbs.
A week before my 59th birthday, a friend we had met only online, found me a home in the city where he lived. He moved me, our cats, and all the belongings collected by two people over twenty years. I arrived exhausted, feeling emptied like a husk, and without hope. On the doorstep was a potted miniature rose, left by my new landlords. Inside was a warm, dry, comfortable place which I am finally beginning to call home.
This friend and my companion never met in person, but he took over as my caregiver and rescued me from what would perhaps have been the place where I, as well as my companion, would die.
Strangers saved my life. It took me a long time to survive the transplanting. When I began living in this new home, I found my teacher and my path. Here I am finally planting a garden… on my own two feet, with the support of my caregiver, my landlords, my sangha brothers and sisters and new friends.



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gala wilkie

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:44 pm


I had many difficulties in my childhood, which I am now grateful for because difficulties are really opportunities. One day after school I found that I was locked out of my home. It was late autumn and the day was cold, I had homework to do and I was hungry. I was on the point of despair, because this was not the first time I had faced this challenge, and previous solutions were unavailable to me this particular day. My upstairs neighbor, a young punk-rocker saw me and invited me in to his apartment. He gave me a meal, we listened to music, I did my homework. I learned to trust that people are basically kind, even though my parents were often unable to meet my needs.



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Linda Stiles

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:46 pm


Last November, my father was diagnosed with terminal colon cancer and I moved from New York to Florida to take care of him. Despite the strained relationship my husband and father had for many years, my husband offered to join me and proceeded to assist me in caring for my dad for three months. My father had so many intense health issues including a colostomy, urostomy and catheter which required constant maintenance and care. My husband never hesitated to provide the most tender, hands-on caregiving to my father, in an effort to help my father maintain his dignity and to make him feel as comfortable as possible. My husband was always positive, nurturing and made my father his priority up until my father’s last breath. I feel more deeply in love with my husband than I thought was possible! His self-lessness and compassion were so effortless and natural for a man that never seemed to like or accept him. It was so wonderful to be witness to the healing of their relationship and to know that my father left this world feeling so loved and cared for and I will always be grateful to my husband for his contributions to making the end of my father’s life as comfortable and dignified as possible.



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Cheryl McGauley

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:51 pm


I am a member of a 12 step program. A consistent and giving member without previous symptoms was diagnosed with cancer and given three months to get his affairs in order. He lived alone, his daughters lived in diferent parts of the country and had years ago broken communications with him. Without discussion or question people from the program organized to be there with him 24- 7 whether at home or at the hospital. I would arrive at 8 in the morning to hang out with him on my shift to find a person had spent the night in a sleeping bag on the floor at the hospital to make sure he wasnt alone and to asure he was receiving the treatment he needed. Others volunteered to take care of his bills. Some took care of his house. Many made sure the the daughters were well taken care of when they came out to visit. These individuals were all members of the 12-step meetings he had been attending. Respect for him was shown by stowing egos and personal needs and putting his needs first. The care was very organized and reliable. His men’s meeting brought their meeting to the hospital and eventually to his house.
His daughters watched the caring and support each of us offered their father and were astounded. They began to see their father in a new light. This man they realized was no longer the driven, hard-drinking workaholic they had grown up with. He was giving, caring and commanded respect and caring from those around him. Each daughter found a new connection and gratefully found the father they had hoped for. I was there the night he passed on. One daughter thank me for helping out. I replied that it was an honor to be there for him. And that i could safely speak for the rest of us. She was taken aback.
At the services celebrating his life, his loss was definitely felt. I lost a friend, golf partner, someone to lean one emotionally in times of need. But the overall theme was gratefulness: for his life, for the ability to be there for him, for his children to have a chance to see all of who he had allowed himself to be, and how much he loved them.



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laura may

posted October 8, 2007 at 1:54 pm


I feel so blessed to share this experience, as I have been wanting to shout it out for all to hear.
Every month the members of the recovery group I belong celebrate each other’s anniversaries, 30 days, 90 days, 1 year, 2 years, 17 years, and on and on. It is always a day of great joy and laughter as we support each other’s reinvention and spiritual journey. Each member celebrating has an opportunity to speak if they wish, starting with the longest sobriety on to the beginners counting days.
David celebrating five years stood up. (I had an opportunity to know him a little more personally because he had kindly helped with my service commitment to order and serve the anniversary cake at the previous meeting.) When he began to speak I was aware of something different in his tone of voice, there was an urgency as he was shared that when he had been on the subway platform (we live in New York City) there was a lot of clamour, people yelling, crowds gathering. David said that normally he would instinctually move in the opposite direction of such chaos, but today something was different and he walked to the center of the action.
A gentleman had fallen into the train tracks and was unable to get up. A train was approaching. Another man had jumped in, but the fallen fellow could not be moved. Without thought, David (a slight fellow himself), placed both his cell phone and IPod on the ledge, and jumped into the tracks of the oncoming train, as did a third gentleman. The injured man was heroically saved.
As David was speaking, I literally saw God within him, I saw an aura of the most warm golden light surround his head, shoulders and arms.
I sat in disbelief of my eyes, I attempted to intellectualize that it was the flourescent lighting of the room creating an illusion. I repeatedly closed my eyes, and looked at David again, and again. Only to be embraced by God’s light glowing in him each time.
I am new to my own recovery and return to my core of spirituality, as I had left my state of grace some time ago. I am humbled and in awe of God inviting me to see such kindness and light. I have not felt anything like this moment before. In retrospect it pains me to see how my first reaction was of disbelief, but now I realize that this most precious moment was truly an affirmation of His/Her presence, a message warmly welcomed and very needed by me. I shared with David my experience of him whilst he spoke, as I had this great need to tell him that I had seen God in him. David quietly smiled, I think he knew.
Thank you for this opportunity to share this,
warmly,
laura



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Trent Greene

posted October 8, 2007 at 2:03 pm


It is the daily acts of kindness that I believe are the most challenging and the most valuable. The older I get, the more I appreciate the kindness of my parents. They were far from perfect, and they did not handle every situation as well as we all would have liked, but they loved me unconditionally. This unconditional love made my home a safe place, and I believe there are only two things that are absolutely necessary to be present in a child’s home: love and safety. The Dalai Lama has spoken many times of how one person can influence the lives of many through kindness and compassion. I am eternally grateful to my parents and to God for allowing me to be raised by the parents who raised me, and I am grateful for the values they have instilled in me which will be passed down to my children, and passed along to all of the people they touch; co-workers, clients, neighbors, strangers, friends as well as difficult people who need it the most. Thank you mom and dad for what you have given me. I hope some day I will gain the strength and courage to tell you these things in person.



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Patrick

posted October 8, 2007 at 2:14 pm


I have benefited from numerous acts of kindness throughout my life, but the most significant is a gift from my wife. While the mere fact that she agreed to be my wife is a significant act of kindness, the sacrifices she has been willing to make to have a child are truly selfless.
Due to the fickle nature of our biology, we were not successful in our initial attempts at pregnancy. In order to become pregnant and maintain the pregnancy, my wife had to undergo surgery and then inject herself with extremely large needles every day for more than 4 months. She did so willingly and with virtually no complaint. The injections were painful and she developed an allergic reaction to the oil that the medication was mixed with. Still, she continued with the process, proving herself to be much more courageous and selfless than I am.
We are past the injections and the pregnancy is moving along well. I have thanked her numerous times for her sacrifice and her willingness to endure the process, but I don’t think I will ever be able to fully express how impress I am with her.



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Sally

posted October 8, 2007 at 2:18 pm


I have lost a sister to cancer. She was far too young and was not able to finish raising her three children. I soon learned that tragedies are part of life and what matters most is how we respond to them.
I volunteer on the oncology floor of a children’s hospital. I find it rewarding and inspiring. It can be sad, but it magnifies not only how fortunate I am that my own young son is healthy, but also the awareness that circumstances can change for any of us in a given moment.
A good friend of mine has a young son who is battling leukemia for the second time. He recently underwent a bone marrow transplant and it has been very rough on him. He has about a 50% chance of survivial. I told her about a woman I met who is not from our city and whose own young son is battling a second cancer at the age of nine. Both boys are being treated at my hospital. The other little boy also recently had a bone marrow transplant. His mother has three other children she cannot be with. She has little means and is on welfare. She openly shares her deep faith and it’s evident her strength comes from her faith. I wish I could do more, but have given her son gifts in hopes of adding some joy to his life.
What I find incredibly kind is that my friend who has so very much on her own plate continually takes time to think of others. Yesterday was the other little boy’s birthday. He and his mother are on their own here. I bought several gifts of things I knew he wanted and my friend baked a cake, also purchased gifts, and wanted to go with me to take them to him. She also thought of a gift we could give the mother. I find it so inspiring that she thinks of others and takes the time for acts of kindness at such a difficult time of her own. Such a wonderful display of compassion and kindness is heartwarming.



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Monique Champagne

posted October 8, 2007 at 2:27 pm


I recieved a serious blow, I was crying. My friend came and sat next to me, not saying a word…… I looked over, he had tears dripping from his face, for me. Without a word he showed me compassion and kindness.



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Rebecca Price

posted October 8, 2007 at 2:52 pm


A Profound Act of Kindness
I see and experience many acts of kindness by others but the one that sticks in my mind the most occurred in 1981. I was a security guard for Wackenhut Security at one of the nuclear power plants in Florida. There were two reactors, one was up and running and the other was still under construction. I worked on the construction side reactor on the night shift. I was the only female guard on the team. That summer they had a huge worksite beachfront and it was worked night and day. On this particular night it was a full moon. So we rotate every two hours to a new post and now it was my turn at the beach. I always looked forward to that assignment. I love the beach. The shack sat just at the entrance to the constuction site. You could easily heave a shell or pine cone to the water we were so close. To get to the meat of it, I was sitting at post that evening and it’s about 10pm; and out of the corner of my eye I think I see the ground moving just outside the gate area. I stepped out and tried to focus on the movement. As I took a few steps out of the shack I suddenly realized that hundreds and hundreds of hatchling loggerhead turtles were walking right up over the sand dunes preparing to stampede into our worksite. Oh my, I am panicking now, they are less than 5 minutes to being crushed by backhoes, front end loaders, dump trucks and all the other heavy equipment. Then it hits me, the the flood and spotlights erected for night work were overshadowing the moon light that naturally guides them and they were headed the wrong way.
I spring into action, call the Reactor Control room, call my captain and in moments, FPL orders a shut down of all work. Every single workman on that site took off his hard hat and proceeded to collect each and everyone of those baby turtle hatchlings and walked right to the surf’s edge and even gave them a little push off on their dangerous journey to adulthood. I have never witnessed such a large volume of people working so quickly and diligently and lovingly as these men that night. Since that night long ago, regulations have been enacted to prevent lights from burning anywhere on the beach at turtle nesting time. What surprised me the most was that all these foul speaking, rough, tough tradesmen who bareley gave ya the time of day showed me a glimpse of their true selves and in this moment I felt happy I was alive. This memory of selfless love will remain in my heart always.



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Jill Uhler

posted October 8, 2007 at 2:53 pm


Heroic acts or helping someone in a crisis is commendable and inspiring, but what truly amazes me are the daily acts of kindness, patience or compassion that very few people demonstrate CONSISTENTLY. I can only think of a couple people in my world that will always listen without distraction, never speak ill of others or roll their eyes at someone, regularly volunteer in their community, or let someone go ahead of them in the grocery check-out line. These people affect a community’s compassionate pulse the most. I admire them greatly.



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Debbie

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:01 pm


I have been the recipient of many acts of kindness and am thankful for
them all. One, in particular occurred about 2 months after my first
husband died. My children were 6 & 10 and it was an effort to get up and do for them each day. The leaves had fallen and covered the lawn
and I would make some attempts to rake them, but was overwhelmed by the
daunting task.
One evening I drove home at dark on a cold late November evening and the leaves were gone on my lawn…not a leaf in sight…just the green lawn that had been under the leaves. I was overwhelmed and in tears. I learned that my neighbor had been at work on my lawn for hours. My neighbor’s efforts were a miracle to me. That miracle for me was a turning point in my life pointing me to hopefulness. Now, I notice miracles daily, but the memory of that special gift from my neighbor will be close to my heart always.



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martha roman

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:04 pm


As i am still reflecting on the loss of my mother-in-law or “other mother” i am reminded of all her unconditional love and support she has given our family all of her lifetime. Having experienced harrowing times during WW2 her kindness to us and her friends was enormous She loved to sew, so getting on in age she sewed a dress for her funeral which was not to be at that time for some time. He sister-in-law died but the family did not have anything decent for her to wear, so our beloved natalia gave her her special dress. I am greatful for the compassionate and loving person she was. We have been given a great legacy from a person who experienced so much and was so steadfast. She gave me my wonderful husband, and gave me my children. I will honor her forever. sincerely, martha



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David L. Byron

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:07 pm


this is personal but rather simple:
I witnessed by two year old son say that he was sorry for hitting his sister, as he patted her on the shoulder.
No one told him to do it, he just instictively did. Now if we all could be so genuine and sincere.



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gary mckeehan

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:13 pm


My cabin burned down in June, 2206. I was not insured and lost almost everything. I was also stunned in quietitude and was descending into a downward direction. An editor who I had had only a glancing contact with went through all my group emails that he was a party to and wrote to a dozen people on it. Ten days later, the editor send me an anonymous money order for $2500. The next day 5 of his contacts showed up to help me start to rebuild the cabin with another $1000. A year later, I was back in my home.



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Brianna

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:15 pm


I know a young woman who is a single mom. About 11 years ago, she and her daughter moved in with a friend who had just gotten divorced and only saw his 3 children every other weekend..one of his sons best friends was living in a very emotionaly abusive situation as his mother was mentally ill..it came to the point where his mom could no longer take care of herself, so this young woman took him in..She fought her fear of heights and went to court several times on the 38th floor of the court house to get custody and have a judge open his records..she not only helped him thru high school, took him to visit his mother in hospitals, sat thru every football game and cheered for him, got him into college and reunited him with his father, she did all this knowing that the man she was living with who she thought was her friend, told this young man all sorts of lies about her..she knew the young man believed the lies but still, she loved and cared about him and though he never once said it back to her or even a thank you..when he graduated college, she was not invited but still had pride in her heart as if he was her own..when his mother committed suicide, she was not informed but found out thru the local paper, she cried for him and what he must have felt and wanted to be there for him…even though til this day he has not contacted her..she never regreted what she did for him and hopes in some small way, she has helped him on his path to happiness which means more to her than any words he could ever say….



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Blair Boone

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:24 pm


Earlier this year, I watched a special on killer whales on the Discovery Channel. In it, a pod of killer whales emerged from the sea practically stranding themselves along the shore in an effort to capture baby sea lions to feed the rest of the pod of whales. One rather large female managed to capture a sea lion and proceeded to toy with the creature tossing it towards a younger killer whale. It was explained in the program that the whale was teaching its young how to hunt and successfully come out of the water without completely stranding itself on the beach. Although I understood that in nature, a creature had to feed in order to live, I still found myself feeling an enormous amount of compassion and sadness for the small sea lion which had fallen into the jaws of the whale and now found itself the plaything of an entire group of killer whales. An astonishing thing occurred next, something the viewers were quite fortunate to have filmed by producers of this nature program. After the whales were done playing with the baby sea lion and once the group felt the young whales had been schooled in the art of the hunt, the large female killer whale took the sea lion between its teeth and without puncturing the skin, brought the sea lion back to shore and released it.
I got chills when I saw such a magnificent display of compassion. Apparently, it was not this sea lion’s time to go. I couldn’t help but think that even in nature creatures show not only the instinctive drive to kill, but the inclination towards kindness, compassion and an appreciation for living beings.



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Sally Ann C

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:35 pm


Twenty-one years ago my director called me into her office and told me I had a “personal problem”. She wanted to be sure I did something about it. She was very nervous because as you know a drunk can be unpredictable to say the least.
Fortunately I took her advice and today I am sober. I can never forget her kindness and bravery in taking that step.
peace -
Sally Ann C



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christianna capra

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:40 pm


i am a single woman who drives about 500 miles per week to get from the city to the country where my horses are. one day i got a flat tire in the pouring rain and my phone wouldnt work (bad area i guess for a signal). i began to change the tire on my own and was having a harder and harder time as it getting dark and raining pretty hard. my boyfriend of 11 years had recently “let me go” so emotionally i was weak and lonely, i failed at getting the car to stay on the jack and began to cry by myself on the side of the road and begged God to help me…(in general). while i was being drenched in the rain and my tears a elder man stopped to help me – he didnt seem much able to do the physical part of the job – but amazed me and had the tire changed in 10mins. he was at this point also soaking wet – i had no real money to offer him and he smiled and said that i should drive carefully on the “donut” and keep the light smiling in my eyes…then he was gone. I am sure that God sent me an “angel” that day – to get me on the road and also to restore my faith.
I would be so lucky to be able to hear the Dalai Lama speak and teach while in NYC – I hope I can go…
Blessed in peace and light,
Christianna



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Nina DeLee

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:41 pm


A friend made the mortgage payments for a mutual friend who was behind one years worth along with the accompanying taxes due also for the same year. This kept her family from losing their home due to the ensuing forecluse. She was behind on her mortgage payments due to a tragic illness in the family.



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Jeannette Folger

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:44 pm


A couple of years ago, I was working in a class of 4th graders when we started to discuss how so many additives are put into our food. I mentioned that I can no longer get my favorite gum in the US due to artificial sweeteners that are added to “enhance flavor” but that in Canada, they have no such additives.
Months later, after holiday break, one of our students came back from a trip to Montreal. He unpacked his books and lunch, put his notes on the desk and then walked up to me and handed me a pack of my favorite gum. I had tears in my eyes while I thanked him. This student is constantly in the principal’s office, he is labeled a trouble maker by many, but I saw through it all and saw a thoughtful, compassionate little boy who was eager to please his teacher. To me, it was one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me and I am touched still to think that he thought of me while away on his vacation.



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Margie Enlow

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:45 pm


I have witnessed and been the recipient of many acts of kindness. The one that I think of most often and really made a true difference in my life was the first year I returned to college. I was living in a dorm with money I had saved to go back to school and live on. I had just landed a job but knew I wouldn’t get paid for two weeks. So, I had a very limited budget. I had gotten groceries which I had hoped would last me for two weeks, but those were kept in my roommates refrigerator. When I was at class she and some of her friends ate all of my food. I had no money left and no food. I told my roommate that she need to replace the food and the fact that I had no money. She told me to call my parents and ask them for money. My mom was recently divorced and had a family to take care of, plus she was 500 miles away. There was no way she could send me any money, but I called her anyway. She told me that she had no money to send, so I went without food for 5 days. On the 6th day, I went to my god-parents home. They had always taken care of me when I was young. My godmother, Penny, is one of the most caring and loving people I know. She invited me in, we caught up on many events in my life – college, my new job, dorm life, friends, and on the events in her life. I never told her I was hungry, or that I had no food or money – she just knew somehow. And when it was time for me to go that evening, on the way out of the door she handed me a loaf of bread and $20. I have never been so thankful for food or money – it helped relieve the anger I felt for my roommate and I was able to forgive her, and I never went hungry ever again.



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Patrick Wade

posted October 8, 2007 at 3:45 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed was a person’s living donation of a kidney to a complete stranger. Although difficult to donate one’s kidney to another being at anytime, the recipient is usually someone known by the donor. However, to simply hear about a stranger’s need and to voluntarily donate one’s organ is the most profound act of generosity and kindness that I have ever witnessed.



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Diana Flood

posted October 8, 2007 at 4:03 pm


A few years ago a co worker who was very highly thought of by our firm and loved by her co workers, came to the end of her long battle with cancer. She was placed in a hospice facility. Being the only breadwinner with three children in college, her financial status suffered and the family was evicted from their appartment. The directors and managers in our firm (one of the big four accounting firms) allowed us co workers not only to raise money to help the children, but they allowed us to go spend hours with her on company time. They allowed us to go whenever we wanted to and stay however long she needed us.
Writing about it two years later still brings a tear to my eye. We were as grateful as our dear friend was that a big firm such as ours could show such compassion and not think at all of what it was costing them. This behavior was surely in the vein on the Dalai Lama’s religion of kindness.



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Judy Branam

posted October 8, 2007 at 4:05 pm


The most profound kindness I personally have witnessed is a young man of age 19 broke the windows of my daughters car, and pulled her burned and unconscious from the car as the gas tank was leaking. When he got about 50′ from the car it burst into flames. If it hadn’t been for him my daughter would be dead, burned alive….and my grandson would be an orphan. He didn’t realize until later that his hands were cut and burned from carrying her. She lived and is functioning normally today. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t thank him in my heart for this.
judy



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David

posted October 8, 2007 at 4:15 pm


In the darkest moment of my life when to the average observer I seemed to have it together I was fortunate to engage in a conversation with a friend. I confided to him that I was struggling with a terrible drug addiction, a fact which he indeed already knew. Instead of allowing me continue on the path of selfish weakness, he instead gently but with a quiet intensity stated that in my current condition I was not the kind of person he would even allow around his children. The profundity of this simple remark both devestated me and strengthened my resolve. My gratitude to this individual for reinforcing my own feelings with a harsh truth. Om mani pad me hum.



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Mariana

posted October 8, 2007 at 4:45 pm


If you are alert, I think everybody is a carrier of benevolence and acts of kindness. It depends how you perceive life. I experience acts of kindness every single day. I tutor children ages 5-10. When they understand a concept, they smile and that gets to my heart. I feel that they appreciate my kindness and so kindness is given back to me through their smiles. When I go jogging with my husband, I feel nature being kind to me; it gives me unconditional permission to enjoy. After that, I bow.



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Diane Furo

posted October 8, 2007 at 4:58 pm


My most profound kindness was simple, but powerful. A friend was in the car with me. He pulled down his visor because our Florida sun was bright. He reached over and pulled down my visor without even asking. That was the first act of kindness that I remembered that was purely for me since I was young and my parents were alive. For that moment, I felt not like a caregiver, but a care-receiver. It made me realize that I was worth caring for!



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Raven

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:01 pm


My answer to that is that the Universe has allowed the manifestation of His Holiness during our time.As far as i know, he and the Karmapa are the embodiments of the Boddhisattva Chenrezik/Kwan Yin/Kwannon/Avilokiteshvara. The enormity of that makes it seem ever-more-so possible that suffering might be defeatable within a foreseeable future….Lets hope.



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Alfonso Montero

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:02 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have ever received is a smile, honesty and goodwill friendship from a person that shares their happiness to my life. Which in turn I share it with another person in need; helping connect and promote our peace, friendship, and happiness to all of humanity.



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Gabriella Taylor

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:13 pm


KINDNESS TRANSCENDS LANGUAGE BARRIERS:
Refugees of the Hungarian Revolution, having spent 3+ years in Austrian refugee camps, we’d finally arrived in N.Y.C. after an exhausting trip from Vienna that seemed like it had taken days. Tired & hungry, my parents knew that we had but enough money for the train tickets to Ohio, where we were to meet up with our sponsors… with but a few dollars left over, certainly not enough to buy food for a family in 1960. (This was before the age of fast food restaurants and we were in midtown Manhattan.) Though my parents were aware of the situation, they gladly gave me the few Dollars they had, as I insisted on confidently going into into the nearby deli, much to their bewilderment. At the age of 5, I had mastered both Hungarian and German, but knew almost no English, so I spoke to the man behind the deli counter in Hungarian, explaining our arrival in the U.S.! Naturally, he didn’t understand Hungarian, so I proceeded in German, hoping for the best; luckily this was a language that the helpful man at least recognized… immediately summoning someone more fluent. After a warm conversation, I thanked my new American “best friends” and left the deli to meet up with my nervous parents who stood outside with the 2 suitcases that held all the possessions we had in the world. Much to their amazement, shock, and disbelief, their tiny daughter handed them two grocery bags, filled to the brim with food, which seemed to all of us like the miracle that it was, bringing smiles of gratitude and tears of joy to my parents’ faces. Some years later, when my father was a prominent chef in Manhattan, he continued his habit of preparing a plate of food for anyone in need who might wander around the back/side entrance of the restaurant… not only because of the kindness he, himself, had received upon our arrival in the U.S. but because this is the way he’d always been, back in Budapest, before he’d ever thought of traveling to the land where the “streets are paved in gold.”



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Kim

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:18 pm


The greatest kindness I have seen is also, in my opinion, one of the simplest and purest. It was when a woman dropped her bag of groceries and the entire contents spilled out in a chaotic mess. A gentleman passing by stopped to help her, even though he was clearly on his way somewhere and had to set his own armload of grocery bags down.



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Kate Johnson

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:28 pm


The most profoundly humbling experience of my life occurred when I went to Albania in 1999 to deliver aid to refugees from the conflict in Kosovo. After a long journey and much unaccustomed physical labor, I collapsed from exhaustion and heat, and was taken to a field hospital in a refugee camp in Kukes. The hospital, run by an Arab NGO, had only a small professional nursing staff, so many of the women doing the nursing tasks were actually Kosovan refugees themselves. They treated me as though I were a precious jewel, sitting with me, holding my hand, bringing me food, and not even letting me walk to the port-o-potty without two or three of them accompanying me to make sure I didn’t hurt myself along the way. I will never forget the kindness of these women who had lost homes, friends, relatives to the war in their homeland–nor the exquisite lesson in humility they taught me. Perhaps instinctively, they found the divine healing that only giving when you have “nothing left to give” can bring.



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Wendy

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:29 pm


While I was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Nicaragua in 1997-1998 I trained and lived with a Nicaraguan family in a small town where everyone was of humble, humble means. I made friends with the children of the town while there and got to see many of the conditions in which they lived. Cardboard walls, dirt floors, barefoot children and other conditions we can only imagine. One of the poorest little girls, upon hearing that I was leaving town because my training was finished ran to her house and returned with a photo of herself which she gave to me as a gift. Now for Americans, a photo is a small thing to give but for this extremely poor little girl it was the only photo she had of herself and the only thing she had to give me and she wanted me to have it. How can you show your gratitude for something like that? I will always carry that little girl in my heart. Forever.



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Harriette

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:32 pm


If I were to think about it, I have received a little act of kindness, each and every day. I think the most prfound, was visiting Paris France from the US. I did not speak french, but needed a place to stay for the night. I was told that it was too late to find a hotel, but someone was able to call a hotel and put me and my son up for the night. It showed me that kindness even trancends language



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ZENAIDA

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:33 pm


My husband had left me in our home that was already sold on a Sheriff
Sale and I had no place to go along with my farm animals. The
new owner told me I could stay and will not evict me until I can find
a new home for me and my farm animals which lasted two years. The
house next door went up for sale and a friend bought it for me in his
name and another friend lent me the money to finish the sale
and move into the new house. Not only one person helped me in this
time of need, but, three people who do not know each other came
into action to save me and my farm animals from being homeless. I
still owe $1,500.00 and yet my friend had not even asked for her
money back, a year later. My brother was hospitalized the same week I
moved into the new house then passed away a week later. I had to pay
for all his medical and burial expenses. They all understood what I
was going through which made it easier to bear.



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jackie osowski

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:36 pm


“What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?”
I have witnessed my brother convicted and in prison with help of his siblings, forgive his siblings (which I am having a hard time doing, and I am not in prison) for standing against him in court, and stealing the possessions that was willed to him in my mothers will.
He hasn’t had the best life by all means but to hear and see him forgiving the years my siblings and his has taken away from his three boys and his wife just amazes me. I stand by him and his family because he is my brother and doesn’t have a mean streak towards the family. He took care of my mother for 3-4 years after she had her stroke. He feed, bathed, and dressed her. He took her for walks, shopping and out for dinner when she was strong enough.
He stood behind my mother when my sisters were mean to her and tried to get social services to remove my mother from her home. He is the strongest character I know. Perhaps going to prison is a positive thing for him because he finishing GED there and is exited about taking college classes at the prison to become a heat and cooling technician.
This is helping his boys to focus on finishing school also. Which prior to living with their grandmother was hard for them and caused many family problems with all the stress they were dealing with. I am very proud of my younger brother for forgiving my other sisters and brothers maybe I can learn something from him also.
Jackie Osowski
“What is the most profound act of kindness you have ever witnessed or received?



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Jennifer

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:37 pm


The most profound act of Kindness I’ve witnessed is without any hesitation my young daughter, Georgia interact with her 87 Year old Great Grandmother with Dimentia. Everytime I brought her to the nursing facility to visit her, I always walked out of their with such a warm heart. Just the simplest interactions with one another were so remarkable. Georgia would have a job to do everytime we went there. That was to comb Grandma’s hair. With each stroke of the comb, you can truly see the joy in both their faces. The smiles each one of them brought to eachother were so genuine and REAL. If only all of us could have such sincere interactions with one another, this world would be a healthy happier place.



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John Strode

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:41 pm


to: Tenzin Gyatso, His Holiness the Dalai Lama……You have been an inspiration for me for over 20 years. Over the years, Your consistent compassion in the face of seemingly constant persecution continues to be an inspiration to me. I have been a supporter of the “Free Tibet” campaign since 1994 and I now see people that I have exposed to some of Your teachings and truths, following better paths to enlightenment; and for that I am forever grateful.
To be given the opportunity to study under your Holiness would be a lifetime honor.
Kindness to all….



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Toni

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:47 pm


Several years ago I was in an accident and broke my leg. Being completely independent financially, no insurance and no one to borrow money from I was in a very tough situation. I was to be off my leg for 6 weeks, which turned into 8 weeks. My landlady at the time let me go the next two months without paying her rent. Knowing my hardship she went above and beyond. This to me is a profound act of kindness!



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Marie Hennessy

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:54 pm


My husband’ manner in which he treats my elderly Mother, whom is suffering with memory loss. His patience, caring acts that display a secure envirnoment in her home and allowing her to have dignity amoungst the fear and confussion.He was just the same when my aling Father came to pass. His own Dad passed when he was very young and as it came to be also hsi Mother as of late. He amazes me daily with his generosity and understanding that allows us to spend much time with my Mother and often at the cost of spending time alone with him and also to mention the household duties.His understanding of what disfference and enormus impact sacfrifice for others can make. This is profound.



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maureeen

posted October 8, 2007 at 5:57 pm


a smile, a hand on my shoulder, a prayer



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Sue Henderson

posted October 8, 2007 at 6:05 pm


On my travels to India I had a packed lunch with me in the taxi and an old lady came up to the window and mentioned she was hungry. I gave her my lunch and she noticed I was looking at her open it and she asked me if I wanted 1/2. I got teary eyed and said Thank you God.
It’s very easy to be kind but sometimes we just forget.
Just today I was discussing about kindness through the Dalai Lama’s teachings. 18 yrs. ago used to sit in the subway and did not like when someone touched me. Now I keep reminding myself that God has made us all and it does not bother me anymore.
Thank you for making me feel good and sharing this feeling with my friends.
Sue Henderson



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Linda Nataya Estrin

posted October 8, 2007 at 6:05 pm


My son Sasha would not deprive a plant of magnesium ina Biology laboratory experiment. He did not want to see the plant suffer or feel pain.



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Cheryl Zellers

posted October 8, 2007 at 6:09 pm


The most profound act of kindness that I have ever witnessed is a difficult remembering for me, I see kindness in the ways people interact often. The most humorous act of kindness that I have witnessed is when a woman pulled over to give a man a ride. She thought that this man who was homeless needed a ride. She got him into the car and all settled with his baggage. She then asked him where he would like to go. He said well I was happy where I was…I guess you could bring me to the restroom in Nevada City where I could pop some popcorn with my pop corn maker…profound acts of kindness are acts that are selflessly repeated. Profound because of the nature of the person who repeats the act over and over again without expectations and purely from the nature of his/her being. A smile and the light in the eyes of a child as he or she engages with another being is such an act that affects the world in a profound way…



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Chryll McMillion

posted October 8, 2007 at 6:10 pm


The most profound act of kindness I ever recieved was the day you will give me free tickets to see the Dalai Lama in New York.



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Lisa Kundreskas

posted October 8, 2007 at 6:13 pm


The most profound act of kindness I ever received was just a few days ago when my birth mother and I were reunited after 38 and one-half years. She came to my house with her husband and was so warm, affectionate and loving and I felt all of her joy, pain,longing, and relief when we hugged for the first time. She brought me some of her favorite books, a pin made by her favorite artist, and, best of all, a jar of strawberry jam picked by her, and preserved by my biological grandmother.



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Monika Reis

posted October 8, 2007 at 6:17 pm


My daughter was in seventh grade and still feeling ‘new’ to the communtiy we had moved to. She had already lived at 11 addresses; most in two states. Our single man of the house was Connor, our noble cat of eight years. The city had to demolish the back-end of our subsidized housing, and this disrupted the cat’s usual trek to the meadow. Connor had braved the street and on a rainy October evening, was hit by a woman in a car. It took me two days to hear of the death of a cat and a neighbor said to phone the police. From the evening dispatcher, I was saddened to realize it had been Connor. She continued reading from a written report! that the woman had phoned and Bicycle Bob (police) had set out in the rain to retrieve the cat’s body. The woman stood beside her vehicle, directing cars and did not want to have Connor’s body be repeatedly run over by traffic. Can you imagine being able to communicate such regard to a young daughter as her shoulders heaved in grief? This story comes from the smallest state capitol: Montpelier, VT. I was so moved by this woman’s compassion that I knew we were among supportive people, that even in a tragic moment, I felt my daughters and I had been deeply blessed.



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Trudy D

posted October 8, 2007 at 6:50 pm


The most profound act of kindness I witnessed was when I was given the strength to assist my father through the last five weeks of his life.
My mother died the year before and dad lost his desire to be here. I called daily and visited him but it took a year before he was able to face traveling across the country to visit my sister, children and me.
I noticed he was exhausted and had difficulty breathing when I picked him up at the airport. It was in the hospital emergency room that we were shocked with the news that he was terminal. He had cancer of the colon, liver, lungs and brain.
I knew immediately that I would be his caregiver and would hold him until he breathed his last breath so he would never feel alone again. When he was in the hospital I slept in the bed next to his, and spent my days with him, leaving to do errands and tend to my 3 children only when he slept. Fortunately, the hospital was only blocks from our house.
I decorated the room with bright posters and pictures of the things he cherished, brought in plants and a decorated live pine tree, a gurgling water feature, animated lamps with swimming fish, softly played his favorite music, and put up little lights, even decorating the IV stand.
On December 5, the Dutch Christmas, I asked the church choir to sing for him, inviting the doctors, nurses and patients to join our party. The spare bed was ‘spread’ with Dutch Christmas favorites. One lady sang Dutch songs that dad was still lucid enough to join in with. He was so touched seeing how much people cared for and loved him that his eyes often teared up.
I rented a hospital bed and brought him home to enjoy his last weeks with us in a cozy home atmosphere. His abilities deteriorated quickly, so we went from being able to meet his own needs, to being hand fed, and ‘waltzed’ to the commode, to IVs and diapering. Again, I was given the ability to meet those needs.
Eventually the only ‘treat’ he could enjoy was massages, so his body and feet were lovingly rubbed daily. With kindness, a church member often came to give, and teach me how to give, Hands on Healing to relax my father and make him more comfortable.
When he was lucid we talked for hours and laughed with black humour about the situation. Even in his last days in a coma, I could see his foot raise slightly when I told him I was going to massage his feet again. I knew he was still aware and continued talking to him of the wonderful memories I had and the love I felt for such a great father.
The night he was leaving us, I stayed by his side, hugging him and telling him it was alright to go to the light. Both my sister and I were with him when he took his last breaths, embracing him from both sides.
It was the hardest and yet most rewarding experience a daughter could give her father. I know the caring prayers of many sustained me and I was given the ability to go beyond myself and ‘give’ with all my heart.



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Michael Hazlett

posted October 8, 2007 at 6:55 pm


The most profound act of kindess I have ever recieved would have to be the unconditional love my mother gave me after I told her I am gay. It was the hardest thing in the world for me to come to terms with that fact, and even harder to tell someone else. I was deathly afraid of her reaction, yet pleasantly suprised when she said to me that she would always love me no matter what. There is not a day that goes by where I dont feel gratious and appreciate my mother for the wonderful person she is.



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Joan

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:12 pm


I had a miscarriage that day–one week before Christmas. My saddness was unspeakable. My family left the hospital, I was put on the maternity floor in “the problem room”—alone, in a room with 4 beds. I could hear the new mothers, the new babies–throughout the evening, into the wee hours of the morning. I felt empty, very sad and very alone. About 3am, I still couldn’t sleep—I walked out into the hall, and went to the nursery windows to see the new babies and with their mothers. A very pretty lady came up to me, tapped me on the shoulder and said “Hi,which one is yours?”–I looked at her,tears fell and somehow the words came out–”I don’t have one.”–The lady said she also had some time, and if I didn’t mind, could she come back to my room for a while?—-I said okay—She did, she stayed–talked with me, listened & hugged me. I don’t even know what I said to her, only that my heart broke and I could not go on, even with my small daughter at home. I told her I couldn’t be a mom at all, especially not to my daughter at home, I couldn’t be me anymore—-all I knew was pain. All I saw was emptiness. My heart broke, in pieces. This “lady” stayed with me, for most of the wee hours of the morning. She prayed with me, a “calming presence of peace” came over me. My sobbs were less. The lady said I would get through this–I still had no words, yet I tried to thank her for her most unselfish gift of her time and herself——at a time when my world stopped. The “lady” gave me her name, address and phone number, next to some words on a very pretty little card. I could not read this until the next day, my tears wouldn’t stop. The card said “Keep your eyes on the light, shining through the stained glass windows, and the shadows will fall behind you”. How could she know? I wondered. After being discharged, and during the first few days home, I found the card she gave me. I tried to call her, several times—–NO SUCH NUMBER. I wrote her a thank you card, and thanked her for her kindness—-the card was returned—NO SUCH PERSON. I called the post office, the post master was very pleasant, and again stated NO SUCH PERSON. The Greatest, Most Unselfish Act of Love and Kindness was given to me at a time in my life when there was no light. I often think of “The Lady” and see her as an angel in disguise. Kindness to me comes in many forms, when you least expect it, when you think you deserve nothing. It finds your heart, even when you think you don’t have one———-melts away the darkness, the pain and all the scars and with the Grace of a Divine Light & Love from above, Heals You. For this I will always be thankful. To this day, my life has never been the same. My religion has become Kindness, too.



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Mark Rego-Monteiro

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:14 pm


While I’ve worked in Africa and social services, bought lunch for street kids in South America, and volunteered for environmental causes. I think one of the kindest things I can think of is working with a racist bigot. I was promoted at a job, my first prolonged exposure to a corporate office.
He expressed his pent up feelings regularly in a variety of discussions. When I mentioned that evidence shows that humankind evolved in Africa, he denied it and said it happened in the North Pole! I realized and learned a few things, like he had a Polish background and that hardly anyone actually praised or recognized the good side of European contributions (also my own). As such, I shared my recognition and admiration for the amazing prehistoric record of tools in Europe, the level of cultural organization achieved, and so on. Along with my other interests in socially responsible business and healthy living, such as sharing with him information about a bank account that supports the environment. This type of attitude lead to his gradually turning from a “good ole’ boy” into a bit of a health nut. After two years, he was eating sprouts in the office, keeping a book on healthy thinking by an Indian guru on his desk, and doing yoga there in the aisle, and inspiring me to join him. We also talked lots about starting a juice bar and arts center when we each retired.
I remember a teaching by Gandhi that has always inspired me, which goes like this: “Be the change you want to see.”
Thank you, blessings and good luck to everybody….



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Mary

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:21 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed was while I was working the lay-a-way dept. at Walmart. A woman came in and said she had to cancel her lay-a-way, as her husband had just lost his job and they would not be able to pay for the toys they had put on lay a way for their children.
It was suggested that a collection be taken up for this family. After a week, my fellow employees let me down by only raising $7.00. Needless to say, I got a gift certificate for $100.00 and mailed it annonomously to the family and signed it from Santa. The woman came back a week later and got all the things that were in her lay a way originally. She was so happy, that made my whole Christmas, and I never told anyone about it until now.



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Angela T.

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:22 pm


It was in the dead of winter just a few short years ago. It was holiday time and the streets were decorated with bright lights, glamour and happy people carrying way too many presents (as if dollars spent are the best part of the season). A lonely man with nothing but a name and a pair of shoes with holes was sitting on a bench outside of a homeless shelter.
He began to speak of his life and how he felt it meant nothing. He was depressed, he was scared, he was cold and he was addicted. He spoke of what he missed out on in his life and how he was likely never going to recover from it. He talked about how he had been mistreated, misunderstood and abused. He said his mind was empty, because he had nothing happy to think of and nothing to be grateful for. He had no money, no friends and seemingly no future to speak of. He was alone.
He was given a meal, he was given a coat. He was given some words to help lighten his load “fill your mind with compassion” was what was mustered from that person who sat with him in the freezing cold for over two hours while he cried. He sobered up during this time and wiped his tears. He said he could think of something he was thankful for; that person who sat with him and listened. He knew what that message meant. He shuffled along that night and wasn’t seen for a few weeks. When he resurfaced, he hadn’t touched a drop in the time he had been gone. He said that on that evening a few weeks back, he realized that people do care and that was enough to help him stop drinking.
It’s a powerful message that hits hard when you realize we are all vulnerable and most of us are selfish but we don’t need to be. We can live our lives being kind and compassionate for all things being.
I can’t make it to NYC to meet the Dalai Lama as I can’t possibly take time away from work. But I can hope that the person who wins those tickets, will take to heart all that the Dalai Lama can teach and has to offer as there is much to learn if we are to become teachers of kindness and be filled with compassion ourselves.
It wasn’t he who experienced the most profound act of kindness that night, it was the person he was teaching. I can tell you this, because it was me.



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mary

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:25 pm


At a young age my Grandfather taught me to be gentle and respectful with the whole of the Universe. This has been the greatest Kindness anyone has ever given me.



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Dana Clawson

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:31 pm


The most profound act of kindness I’ve ever received was wonderfully designed to catch me unprepared for it’s impact. I had volunteered for the American Cancer Society and was doing some surveying of local residents about the 7 signs of Cancer. This involved calling from a list of phone numbers.
I had returned to my maiden name of Crow after my divorce and introduced myself by that name when I asked to survey them. Now, Cancer is a scarey thing to a lot of people but knowledge is power so I was grateful that people responded well to my questions.
One gentleman asked me as I was wrapping up his call if I had said my name was Crow. I said yes, it’s my maiden name. He then asked if my family was local and again I said yes. He was silent for a moment and then asked if my dad was named Dane?
All this surprised me because he was right. He explained that he and my father had been good friends when he died. This felt like a strange thing to be talking to someone who was close to my dad. I never knew him because he was killed in an motorcycle before I was old enough to remember.
He went on to tell me what a honorable man my father was and most of all…how proud my dad always was of his tiny daughter. I was flooded with a warm wave of the most loving feeling.
This stranger on the phone gave me the answer to my long held questions of “What was I to my dad?” amd “What was my dad to me?”.
This stranger who went into his past to bring my father forward to me and his message of love.



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Kent Courtney

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:35 pm


When I was five years old, my temperature shot up rapidly to 105 degrees. On a snowy, Seattle day, my Mom ran out of the house with me in such a hurry she hadn’t put her shoes on. My pediatrician, Dr. Layton, was within running distance. My Mom knocked on his door, said what had happened and begged him to take care of me. Immediately, he stripped me and laid me naked in the snow. My Mom was frantic, but Dr. Layton’s quick action broke the fever. While this was happening, I experienced the Divinity. It was a clear image that I carry with me to this day. A white glowing figure told me in a non-verbal way that I was going back – that I had more to do. This experience has lead me onto a spiritual quest that I continue to this day.



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Kimberly

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:46 pm


In my 44 years of life so far I have experienced many profound acts of kindness. However, none so profound as the kindness, generosity, love and compassion that I have witnessed my days working at a pregnancy help center. Being a teen mother myself 25 years ago I had always felt that giving back to young women and men facing an unplanned pregnancy was my calling/purpose. As I counseled many young women over the years I can truly say that there is no greater kindness and love than that of a young mother who selflessly chooses life. I believe that the true teachings of Buddhism and Christianity are that of unconditional love and to treat each human being as you would want to be treated. There is no greater teaching of profound kindness than when a mother chooses selflessly to give life to her unborn. I have also worked with many women who have chosen abortion and my heart aches each day for them. I love them and pray that they will feel peace one day and know that God loves them. We are so fortunate that forgiveness is there for us to embrace and that the teachings of true compassion and love would say “You are love” nothing can take away the perfect ness that God has created. “Be still and know that I am near” May the light of love and peace reach all who have struggled with an unplanned pregnancy, abortion or judgment. “Judge not lest ye be judged”.
Namste



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Dawn Raeder

posted October 8, 2007 at 7:52 pm


One year while my father was truck driving he came across a sweet older couple. My father took such a liking that he even told me of the story of how he met such a nice couple. In his return to his apartment one day he found the couple sitting on his steps in front of his apartment. My father gave the couple his address and said if they were ever in St.louis Missouri please look him up and they will have somewhere to stay. Anyways, what happened was that the couple lost everything a week later after meeting my father in a fire. They only had the shirts on their backs. That day my father took them in his home and helped them out by getting clothes from charity’s near by, gave money to them while he was over the road and also allowed them to stay in his home. He still is not sure what happened to them they left a note telling him thank you for his generosity and one day he would be re-payed.
The story of my beloved father…….



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Susan Z

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:08 pm


For me the most profound act of kindness and often the most challenging are those which require vigilance . Tending to the dailiness of experience as compared to the random or one time act. My work is primarily with the elderly and I am in and out of several different nursing and lifecare facilities each week. I am continually touched by health care workers who are able to respond with respect and kindness to elderly adults who many times are asking the same questions of the same people over and over throughout the day. To be able to look at that person each time they call out and smile and offer them reassurance knowing that when you walk away you may need to return in minutes with a fresh smile ,is truly inspiring to me.
I often compare this vigilance to planting a garden. It is easy the first day to plant the fresh new plants knowing you will be rewarded with the life and color of freh new flowers or vegetables. As the summer unfolds, it is much more difficult to maintain the same joy and excitement returning to the garden to pull up weeds and tend to the daily watering and feeding. It is this dailiness that requires vigilance and the powerful kindness that is needed to look into the eyes of that elderly person each day as they ask for your assistance, attention and care.



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Peri Kannan

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:25 pm


Where do I begin? I had seen so many acts of kindness in my short life of 49years. I have seen equal or more acts of meanness also in this same life.
There is one which comes to my mind as the first one I would quote for this question.
I was 21years old in the big town of Madurai, S.India. It was a big commercial town for agriculture. The temple there is famous for its heritage and history. There were many tourists and floating population in Madurai. India being a poor country then (slightly better now); Madurai had its equal share of beggars also to survive on the kindness of tourists and temple goers.
I was walking to buy something in a nearby market for supper. I approached an old woman; sitting on the curbside with her old tired legs stretched in front of her. The old woman was of an indecipherable age between 55-75. It was a hot day and it was slowly cooling in the evening. There was a child of 20-24months nearby her. The child had only an underwear (brief) on; had no other clothing. It was a boy of maybe another beggar family. He had an aluminum glass, half full of water in his hand. He dipped his hand in it and used his tiny fingers to wash away the old woman’s face of dirt, heat and age old grief. The old woman’s eyes were closed. She was clearly in rapture, almost touched by an angel. The scene stays in mind for all these years, although I had walked by in 3 minutes. I did not have a camera. It would have been great picture. I feel that nowadays that I am glad that I did not have a camera as this moment was an eternal human kindness but private to them. I am sure it is repeated in many parts of the world every day and I am sure that we are not privy to them.
This episode had a profound impact on me. I had tried to be kind in spite of all my all too human failings in many parts of life!
Thx for an opportunity to share it.



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JOANN SHAW

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:26 pm


Hello I am Joann. i am a spirit. i bring love from my soul. I am a caregiver, I took care of my mother in law 4 years before she passed this January. She was on dialysis for 3 years. I brought her back and forth for treatments, in Union City New Jersey. I showered her, lived with her for 6 months, I helped her in bathroom. I felt a part of me died when she passed. I am still recovering. The hardest thing I ever did again was when I was separated from my husband for a year someone asked me out. eventually he asked me to marry him and I let him go for I thought he loved someone else. It has been 5 years to this day and I still can’t get him out of my mind. I thought my husband changed so I gave him a second chance. I was wrong. He is the greatest man I ever knew. I hope he found his happiness. When I am surrounded by my friends filled in love I fly around the world. I always pray for peace, for our troops to come home, for safety for all the children of the world, I pray for understanding God and his ways not our interpetations. Just be, help, feel, love. Life is simple. Thank you for reading this. Peace safety and help and love bless the world.
Sincerely, Joann



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Joseph V. Ainis

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:34 pm


a simple “ThankYou”



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Chad M

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:34 pm


The most profound act of kindness I have witnessed and continue to witness is nature’s abundance of beauty. Everywhere I look I see incredible amounts of beauty created effortlessly by nature, to me that is the most profound act of kindness one can experience.
-Chad



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Timothy Regan

posted October 8, 2007 at 8:38 pm


My parents were pure KINDNESS.If they had personal wants and desires, no one could ever know. They dedicated their lives to taking care of the children. There were six of us. It was somewhat of a financial struggle, but money meant nothing, our lives were filled with love.Life long kindness goes along way.
Have a good, Thank you, Tim R



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Susan Caples

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:01 pm


Most profound acts of kindness, this is definitely a loaded question. How do you distinguish the difference from a person holding a door open for the stranger who is walking in behind them to a person such as Mother Teresa who gave her life to comfort those whose pain and suffering was greater than hers.
I see the profoundness of any act as when one gives of themselves from the depth of their heart and spirit so the receiver will have a blessed moment. What do I mean by this statement? It means that if I give something to someone so in receiving this gift the receiver’s life will be in the Light of God, Spirit, Yawheh, Budda, Mohammed, or whatever you call the Being of Light that is greater than any of us, then you have given a profound gift. When you pray for your enemy or the enemy of state that the negative thought process will be changed to a positve and the individual wants to improve the situation around them without violence this is a profound act of kindness.
Actually as I write this passage I must say the Most Profound Act of Kindness is to forgive the person who has committed a great harm to you either, and perhaps in all of these categories, emotionally, physically, and/or spiritually To err is Human to Forgive( Alexander Pope) this statement is especially critical in our existing world.
Is not all the fighting among ourselves, our family, our neighbors, our ehtnic groups, and our countries because we could not forgive someone for committing a wrong against us.
Forgiveness is such a powerful tool and once you let go of that anger or hurt and do not own it again you are free to live life in such a peaceful way. If we all could do this then we would be at peace among ourselves and we could tackle so many more issues that affect our daily quality of life and existence.
So to sum this thought process up to Forgive the person or persons who have caused harm to us in some way is the most profound act of kindness we could express.



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Susanne Kaplan

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:06 pm


What is the most profound act of kindness that I have ever witnessed or received? I find this to be a very difficult question to answer since I can see so much kindness around me.
One example would be the kindness of a qroup of neighbour farmers in Saskatchewan that banded together to harvest a man’s wheat crop – because he was in hospital due to a farm accident.
One could go on and on. But how can one tell which act of kindness is more profound than another. I think that I am seeing pure compassion and an act of profound kindness when my husband carefully picks up a lady bug in the kitchen and takes it outside to freedom, thereby saving its life.



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Sidharta4u

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:08 pm


we were swimming in the pool at the country club yesterday and Jeffrey a 9 year old child rescuet a honey bee that had fallen into the water, he put her in his hand and allowed her to drive, the bee was recuperating little by little, then he walked close to the flowers and put some pollen close to her, and the bee was like eating it and comming alive, after the wings dried in a second the bee leaped out of his hand and as a helicopter climbed 25 feet into the air and left looking for his home, the beehive in the forest, I know that suck an act of kindness had change the Universe all over and over again



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Laura W

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:11 pm


This happened in a round about way but proved to me that things do happen for a reason. I had moved to AZ, 2000 miles from my family for 17 yrs. I ended up getting divorce, getting with the wrong person and involved in things I had no business being involved in. My grown daughters seen what was happening and contacted my family and convinced me to get back with my family. I did and it was tough. I lived with my parents but connected back with them and my siblings and their families. I became close to them and then things took a turn the third year I was back. My sister-in-law suddenly passed at the age of 41. We had become very close and it was very difficult on my entire family. Then two months after her passing, my Dad found out he had cancer. I was still living with my parents and watched as he progressively got worse and held his hand when he passed on Christmas Eve. These two people that were so close to my heart were no longer on this earth. It really made me realize how lucky I was and that there was a reason I came back home. I have been there for my Mom ever since but am living on my own. I have also found that I do not dwell on ill feelings towards others. I use to hold a grudge but it is not good for the body or soul. Life is too short and is what you make of it. You may not be here tomorrow to spread the love you have, so spread some today! I do not have a lot of money and usually struggle to pay bills but I am happy and always have a smile to give to someone who may need it. Smiles and hugs can be given freely and can sometimes be worth a pot of gold to someone that is receiving it. Spread the wealth and it will come back to you!



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simon

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:13 pm


look we don’t have too all give we only have too give ourselves it’s not about giving to others all the time it’s about being surround yourself with love where ever you are and you will find enlightenment it takes a great man to achieve. but a humble man achieves. enlightment. if we could all achieve what we wanted then there would be no poverty.
wish i could save them be there or maybe just smile but i can’t sorry but we are all human.
i have not found my faith yet but i will.



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Stanley Velez

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:16 pm


My grandma Pure Vida Velez and American Native Woman that was a civil rights advocate and woman that believe in Education, a woman that will listen all the women in town, a woman into Fortune Telling, and a medecine woman that will give away all his fortune to otherss and that claim no to own anything a woman that loves us and baby seat us and make our lives full with happiness, my grand mother was a pure example of kindness and love, my grandmother who loved Buddha and installed all the believes of Buddha in me,



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LTijerina

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:25 pm


I would like to share one of the, most unforgettable experiences in my life, and I hope she won’t mind, but D.Sonier introduced Buddhism to me 10 years ago, and she didn’t have to – but she devoted her energy of kindness to pick me up and drive me to the temple ten years ago. And with your kindness, I would invite her to join me to celebrate the blessings from the Supreme Being of the Dalai Lama. Thank you!



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David Allen

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:31 pm


In 1991, I was in a horrible accident. I was riding my bicycle and was struck by a truck. I was not expected to live more than a few days. After three weeks in Critical Care on a respirator, I was released to the general ward for a couple more days of rest. I could not speak, so every conversation was one-sided.
The kindness of friends and family was overwhelming. I realized then how important loved ones really are. I never asked for visitors and thought that I did not need them, but their presence lifted my spirits and gave me hope. I don’t think I was ever alone in those three weeks.
But one visit stands out. A young lady who was an acquaintance at work came to visit on one of my last days in the hospital. She came alone and kept me company for maybe 20 minutes. She looked tired and said she would be right back. I watched her walk out the door and stop, where she collapsed on the floor. The nurse on duty rushed over to help and insisted that she get checked out before leaving.
She told me later, through tears, that she was very frightened of hospitals and blood. She had put off visiting me, because she wasn’t sure if she could handle it. However, she really wanted to be there for me. When she finally got up the courage to come, she stayed as long as she thought she could. That is when she walked to the door and passed out.
This act of selflessness affected me so deeply. It is her act that truly made me see the beauty and necessity of the people around me. That she would do this for me, knowing the pain it would cause her was, for me, the ultimate gesture of kindness. It is because of this act that I will never hesitate to pass on a kind word, never pause to help a stranger, never wait to visit a friend or neighbor in the hospital.
I thank her for that.



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Leah Anderson

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:39 pm


I work with animals in a clinical setting, and am currently learning how to communicate with animals in a spiritual manner. I am constantly amazed at the unconditional love that animals offer. I believe they are here for a reason, and have sacrificed their “freedoms” to help us to learn and love on many levels. My cat, Heyoka, has been with me for 9 years so far, and she is my best friend and mentor. She teaches me patience and showers me with love. She helps me to learn through laughter, and demonstrates how to relax and just “be”. She is a wise soul, as all creatures are.
I almost lost her once…She was living with my ex, and was attacked by two dogs on his property. It was through this incident that she came to be back in my life. It was also through this incident that I learned I could help heal and communicate with animals. The sacrifice she made started me on the path I am currently on. She helped me to realize my passion for helping all life.
Through her and other animals, I am able to see what is important in Life. I have seen the gift that they give to me and others every day. What a blessing they are to us on our Paths!



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Ms. Feather

posted October 8, 2007 at 9:50 pm


My motherwas inspired by a neighbor who took care of newborn babies from the time they were released from the hospital (usually when three days old) until they were adopted, and when she lost her last child and her husband within a year, she decided that was one way she could help the world/her community; so, she, too, began taking care of the little ones. Neither were Catholic, but they did this work through the Catholic Social Services Agency because that was the only agency they knew of which did this type of work and because they felt if they did not do it there was a real chance someone who did not care how they treated the babies would end up taking the job. My mother took care of hundreds of little ones until she had to retire. Mrs. Bottorff took care of, literally, thousands of children through the years. They usually had three to five babies at any one time. Some of the children who had “something wrong with them” were in foster care for months or years before someone would adopt them. It didn’t matter. The ladies loved and raised these little ones just as if they were their own until the new family chose that particular precious child. The ladies’ kindness is not just in how lovingly and tenderly they cared for the babies and older children, but in how they did so truly, not in a warehouse-type of way, giving up going places and doing things that might have otherwise interested them, making arrangements for a proper babysitter when they needed to go grocery shopping or take their own child to the doctor, etc., year after year after year after year. You never heard them complain, because they did not look at this as a task or as being burdensome. It was a joy to them to be able to help these little souls be healthy, loved and cared for until a permanent family found them. In the process, anyone who met them and knew about the babies learned how each life is precious, each soul distinctly and obviously different from birth and how easy it is for a person to help another who needs such basics in life. I was blessed to be one of those babysitters. At age eleven I was the youngest person in the state of Arizona to ever be fully certified to watch such young children. This was required because, after a year of hearing Mrs. Bottorff talk about this great babysitter she had found to help her, the responsible agency discovered my age. I just hope everyone else who met Mrs. Bottorff and my mother learned as much from the experience as I did. This might seem to be ‘no big deal,’ but if you stop to think about how many times you just leave your home to do something … and multiply that times many years, you can at least begin to understand the true kindness these ladies gave to each little one who came into their homes not just for a day or two or a month or so because it’s someone they already knew. For years and to many, many babies and toddlers, these ladies lived their beliefs and showed genuine kindness in the process.



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Steve Linhart

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:07 pm


The most profound act of kindness I witnessed was when I read that the Amish community went to the funeral of the man that had taken the Pennsylvania schoolhouse hostage and opened fired upon the girl students to share in the grief of his family and let them know they had forgiven the devastation his actions had upon their community. It was the most selfless act I had ever read about.



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Monica Nichol

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:11 pm


I’m 34 years old, but when I was 12 the phone rang and I answered. On the other side of the line a man asked if he was calling the crisis center. I apologized and let him know he had reached the wrong number. He broke down, told me he was calling from a payphone and pleaded with me not to hang up on him. He didn’t know who he could turn to and just needed someone to listen. That afternoon, with my mother yelling at me in the background, I chose to listen and provide advice that came from somewhere else, somewhere a 12 year olds mind would not be. I remember listening and talking for almost an hour with this stranger and at the end of the conversation he was laughing and thanking me for staying on the line. I remember him saying, “God bless you for listening”. Then he hung up. I remember feeling so good when he said those words and I felt good for doing something that may have changed his life somehow. After 22 years I still think of this man and wonder.



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linda hamilton

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:12 pm


The greatest act of kindness was on June 28, 2005 when my grandson, Shane Patton and 14 other Navy Seals gave their life to save 4 of the Navy Seals trapped in Afganstan. Marcus Luttrell lived to tell the story in his book The Lone Survivor. They have lost their bodies but not life itself, for they are life itself. We are graced by the gift given by those who would give up this world for others who are no other. Just as those who gave up this world on 9-11, their act of kindness will always be remembered. Shane Patton In utmost humbleness, Linda Hamilton



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Ms. Feather

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:12 pm


One of my aunts married someone she thought she was obligated to marry (in other words, not for love), but she was beaten by her husband so much she was unable to have children. She was able to adopt two and eventually, after many, many years, she finally divorced her husband. The man was so disliked by everyone I ever heard speak of him that even his own relatives would have nothing to do with him. He had a stroke and became totally disabled; and, even then, his own siblings would do nothing for him, not even helping to make decisions about his health care (he was unable to even talk.) My aunt took her ex-husband into her home and took care for him for years until he passed over. She remodeled her main bedroom and bathroom to his medical needs, made sure he was fed and took his medications, kept him and his clothes and bedclothes clean and took care of him for years. He was more than twice her weight, but she figured out how to do this. When people asked why in the world she was doing this for a person who had so mistreated her she just said, ‘Everyone needs help sometime and everyone should be treated like a human.’ Some people suggested she just put him into the street and let ‘society’ take care of him; some even suggested she put a pillow over his face and be done with him — but she would never do such things. I don’t know of many people who would take on such a difficult responsibility for anyone they didn’t love, particularly a person who had so mistreated them. Her actions towards her ex-husband were truly the epitome of kindness.



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Gwendolyn M. Broussard

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:30 pm


My name is Gwendolyn M. Broussard, I am 48 years old. My act of kindness I have received is when my little grandchildren I was raising was taken out of my home by a act of incest by a family member. My friends at work and people I grew up with came and made sure I was always ok, everyone called and came by to see if I needed anything. Or if just needed to talk and stop thinking. I’m still fighting to get my babies back, but I know I have been love and I continue to get that love from those people.



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Anonymous

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:31 pm


I work at Target. I had a young man come through my check lane, today, and he was a dollar short. He wanted to leave an item, but, unbeknownst to him, I had decided to help him, if I could. He was only a dollar short. So, I pulled the dollar out, and added it to his total. He was so floored, and I was glad to help.



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d.

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:38 pm


when I was in high distress — at the end of my rope because I wasn’t able to take care of something necessary and didn’t seem able to break the impasse — my friend Scott said to me he didn’t know why. It was such a relief.



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Josephine K. Barker

posted October 8, 2007 at 10:39 pm


In 1972 I was living in Minnesota, and I hitch hiked home for Christmas. A trucker picked me up in Iowa, let me sleep in his cab all the way to New York City, and bought me food and cold medicine along the way. When we got to NYC, I asked him to let me off at the George Washington Bridge so I could catch a ride North to Connecticut. He refused to let me go, and drove me to the huge truck depot in New Jersey, where he spent several hours talking to drivers, trying to get me a ride with someone he knew. Unable to make a connection, he then drove me, in his tractor trailer, back out to Scranton, PA, where the highways met and there would be trucks going North. He parked on the side of the road until he found a “safe” ride for me. The driver who took me to Connecticut was headed for the southeast corner of the state. I was on my way home to the northwest corner. He drove me three hours out of his way in a snow storm to within ten miles of my house. I was eighteen years old. These two gentlemen were the essence of politeness and kindness, and the experience of that trip has been a guiding standard to which I try to live my own life.



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Beezer

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:07 pm


Perhaps the most unselfishly profound act of kindness my wife has delivered was rescuing one of her sisters in a bad marriage, bad business situation and in tax trouble. Thjis giving caring person would be most embarassed by my publicizing her activity, so let me call her “L” for loving.
L is the center of our home, family and in some ways our community. During the year I write about, in addition to running her own business, L arranged to home-school one of our adopted children who was meeting enormous challenges in public education, serve as Daisy leader, and manage to overwhelming success a county bond referendum for $387,000 for public education and works. Yet, when one of her ten siblings called out for help from several states away, L was there. Her sister with two children of her own was in an abusive marriage, losing money in her restaurant and receiving demand notices from the IRS.
L generated in others the reality of creating with her a local team to pinch-hit for her responsibilities here and drove to her sister. In a few weeks there L’s outpouring enabled her and her sister to pull and sort all the receipts together from stashed years, did the taxes, lent the money to pay them, worked to repair the restaurant and put it back on its feet and marriage counsel the couple into professional help. L’s unselfish kindness is a reminder daily to me to live a life worthy of her companionship.



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Clyde Childress

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:08 pm


One day at work I was closing with another manager named Eric. Eric decides he needs to go to starbucks for coffee. He asks me if I would like something and I said no. I have no Idea what I would order being I had never went there before and thought they where over priced and expensive and still do. I said any thing with no caffine in it as I can’t have caffine so I said no thanks. Unknown to me was that Eric brought me back something without caffeine to try. He did not ask for any money. When I offered it to him he just said its on me. To the average person this may not be a big deal but to me it was a simple act of kindness that ment alot to me. He did not have to do that but he did. Sometimes dealing with the public day in and day out as I do can be difficult so I try to grasp and hold on to anything that makes me smile or feel good and on that day I felt good inside that someone did a nice thing.



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Beezer

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:09 pm


(correction to previous, misssed 3 zeros on the bond referendum)Perhaps the most unselfishly profound act of kindness my wife has delivered was rescuing one of her sisters in a bad marriage, bad business situation and in tax trouble. Thjis giving caring person would be most embarassed by my publicizing her activity, so let me call her “L” for loving.
L is the center of our home, family and in some ways our community. During the year I write about, in addition to running her own business, L arranged to home-school one of our adopted children who was meeting enormous challenges in public education, serve as Daisy leader, and manage to overwhelming success a county bond referendum for $387 million for public education and works. Yet, when one of her ten siblings called out for help from several states away, L was there. Her sister with two children of her own was in an abusive marriage, losing money in her restaurant and receiving demand notices from the IRS.
L generated in others the reality of creating with her a local team to pinch-hit for her responsibilities here and drove to her sister. In a few weeks there L’s outpouring enabled her and her sister to pull and sort all the receipts together from stashed years, did the taxes, lent the money to pay them, worked to repair the restaurant and put it back on its feet and marriage counsel the couple into professional help. L’s unselfish kindness is a reminder daily to me to live a life worthy of her companionship.



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Alan Bequette

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:11 pm


My fiance’s son Liam has autism and last year had to be admitted into the Children’s Hospital for a blood clot in his leg. After days of testing they didn’t know why it was there and because of it’s location, weren’t really confident about how to break it up or remove it, and were worried it might move soon which could be fatal. After 5 days of uncertainty, fear and emotional exhaustion from Michelle, (Liam’s mother) I decided to talk with Michelle about having a Shaman we know do a healing on him. After talking with Sandy, (the Shaman), Sandy agreed and gathered a number of other healers with her to perform the healing. She also journeyed that night to the hospital just to “check in” she said and to make sure he wasn’t lonely.
The next morning after the testing and exams the doctors came in and looked totally perplexed at what the images had revealed…no sign of anything and had asked us what had happened during the night or if we had given him anything out of the ordinary. We just smiled inside knowing that without Sandy’s healing, Liam might not be with us now. The doctors decided to keep Liam a couple more days to make sure nothing came back and continued to mention how lucky he is because they didn’t think he would have made it more than a day or two unless they could have gotten rid of the blood clot safely.
I say we owe Liam’s life to Sandy. Never underestimate what one phone call can provide and what one person’s committment to life can achieve.



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Amy Hutchinson

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:24 pm


When I was Seventeen my soul was almost lost. I had given up for good, I had no conception whatsoever of any spiritual condition. For so many years before that my soul had been but empty.
April 16, 1998 My beautiful daughter was born.
Suddenly my heart was filled and opened and light. From that day forward I have sought refuge in the buddha, darma, and sangre
The most kindness and suprising and profound gifts of wisdom and grace I have experienced in my life ………..with greatfullness



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elizabeth stardancer

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:35 pm


this is about my mom,from the min she was born life has been a,fight for life.then she was10 mths old her dad threw her up aganst the wall and broke her hip,they never took her to the docter and then it was time to walk,around the age of one or so she could not walk her step grandmother took over put her in the hospital,she stayed in there for about 2 yrs 3 operations,it only made her worse,one xmas they let her come home,she was in full body cast,and no one know but it got broke again,to this day she walks with a very bad limp,and in lots of pain,and she a waitress walking for lots of hrs,she was about to be marred 2 yrs ago she was very happy and would never have to work again,my brother got a girl in a family way,he was only 16 and the girl was hooked on crack,my mother took on this baby,and loved her and taks very good care of her but,but the man that she was about to marry dud want a baby in there life,and broke up with her so now she still waitress-ing ,still in pain in very need of an operation,and is rasing a now 3 yr old litte girl,she just keeps going,i know that she read and trys to follow your ways,i would love to give this gift to her,like she has giving to so meany other,then we were little i remeber going down town on the weekends and giving out food to the street people,i ask her why are we doing this ,she said at one time then i was a kid i eat out of trash cans,there is so much to tell about her,my mom is very kind….thank for hearing my story, jasmine.good luck to you all



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Amy Hutchinson

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:35 pm


Sometimes I find it as simple as the birds and squirrels my husband and feed everymorning. We have quite a bit of property and the part of it is there are animals everywhere. To just sit and listento them co-mingling….
Has alwas seemed profound to me



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Lin Murphy

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:38 pm


When I was a little girl, my big brother Tom, who I adored,
had a little row boat and he named it after ME. I was thrilled to
the bones. Then he took me for a ride in the row boat and dropped
a pebble in the water and we watched as the circles spread clear across the lake. It was a magical moment of kindness.



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James Maslyn

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:56 pm


It was last year and I was going through a real tough time. School work was taking up so much of my life and I was going through a messy break up with my girlfriend at the time. One night, I was talking to a friend on instant messenger, practically in tears, when I was about to go to bed before I was startled by my phone vibrating. It turned out to be the same friend I was already talking to but she wanted to let me know in a more personal way that my friends were still there for me and that to look foreward to the light of tomorrow. Even now, all it takes is a look at her name in my phone to lift up my spirit.



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Regan McPhee

posted October 8, 2007 at 11:57 pm


It was late on a Saturday night in October of 1999. My roommates and I were heading home after an evening out – drinking, laughing and dancing. On the way, we decided to stop at Subway to grab something to eat, as all the dancing (and, in particular, all the drinking) had made us hungry.
Walking up to the counter we noticed two guys in line ahead of us and one girl making the sandwiches. It was obvious she was developmentally delayed in some way. Her speech was slow and broken. Her manner awkward and clumsy. Yet you could also tell she was gentle, with a kind and loving spirit. It emanated from her.
Unfortunately, the two men ahead of us chose not to see her spirit, focusing instead on her ‘shortcomings’. They were belligerent, rude and shockingly disrespectful, clearly making fun of her. I wanted so badly to intervene. I wanted to tell them to stop, to make them show her the respect she was so obviously afraid to ask for for herself, yet so rightly deserved.
But I didn’t say anything. I didn’t do anything. Because I was also afraid. Afraid of what they might do. Afraid of what they might say. Afraid to take a stand.
Thankfully, however, my roommate did not share my fears. She tapped one of the men on the shoulder and told them to, “Leave her alone. She hasn’t done anything to you. Show a little respect.”
And nothing happened. No one pulled a knife or started swearing or even spoke back. In fact, the guys simply sneered at Jill, grabbed their subs and left.
To this day I think of that moment and cheer and cringe and hope all at the same time. I cheer because I am still awed by Jill’s bravery, standing up for what is right (that every human being deserves to be treated with love and respect) despite what the consequences may be. I cringe because I am ashamed of how I let fear make my decision for me, how I let fear cause me to turn my back on what I value. And, finally, I hope I never forget this act of kindness so it will continue to inspire me to stand up for what I believe in – love and respect for all – regardless of the consequences.



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Catherine McGibney

posted October 9, 2007 at 12:04 am


Twelve years ago, my sister Jeannie, died from complications caused by AIDS. I sat with her and held her hand on and off for days at the end. Listening to music, reading her stories and sometimes sitting silently. I was there when she left her sick body. I have never been so sad and I have never felt so priveleged. Her act of kindness was teaching me that death of a body is not death of a soul. As I held her hand and knew that she was leaving this life behind, there was no doubt in my mind that her soul was continuing it’s journey. This act of kindness, of finally knowing that there was nothing to fear, has enabled me to make changes and improve my life in ways that I did not think were possibilities for me. I will never be able to thank my sister, Jeannie, enough. She was the bravest, most spiritual person that I have ever known and she shared that with me.



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Michael S.

posted October 9, 2007 at 12:18 am


My teenage years: The household I grew up in, with my mother and step-father, fully disintegrated. At 12, I moved in with my biological father and his wife-at-the-time out of state. Most nights of the week, I sat alone in a dark house with no curtains, waiting for someone to come home. Little conversation, an excess of alcohol, this was the norm. The household was an active war zone for a few years. I believe the torment of his sleeping on an old couch finally moved us out. In an effort to keep me in the same school system he rented a small place, there were no apartments to be found. A converted garage made into very modest living quarters. I hung a blanket for privacy. My father resentfully slept on a couch once more. Paint on concrete caused moisture accumulation. It wasn’t long before the walls were ridden with green mildew, which couldn’t wash off the cheap wallpaper. His drinking became very heavy, accompanied by intense depression, most of the time suicidal. My thoughts coming home generally centered on the headless corpse I would soon discover as I turned on the lights. There was abuse. I was trapped. My mother was on welfare, living on section 8, had no money to support me, and her new lesbian lifestyle didn’t agree with me at the time. I had grown accustomed to spending time away from the house at my best friends house. Then he moved away, a few towns over. With no way to leave, I white-knuckled it until a license gave freedom. Once again, I sought refuge at their home. Most of my circumstances unspoken, I was taken aback when his family sat me down to talk. They drew it out of me. I divulged all, I wept, found solace with them. They offered me a place in their home, yet not only a place to live, but a family, as an adopted son.
They offered me a way out of Hades. A demonstration of true compassion, they had meager financial circumstances.
Perhaps I knew my father would die if alone, by his own hand or by the bottle which he clutched so frequently, and I declined the invitation. Yet they had given me a new haven. I was welcome anytime and given a key. There home became a true sanctuary. I got by. During my undergraduate years, I came to live with them… I came to know their house as home.
So, I was fortunate enough to have been the recipient of the most profound act of kindness I have experienced.
My father got and stayed sober, is remarried, and is doing well.



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Shirley

posted October 9, 2007 at 12:26 am


In July of 1985, I had flown to Boston to visit an Uncle and borrowed one of his cars to drive to Hartford to visit with friends. The car used diesel fuel. I had left my friends’ house and gotten lost in an area of Hartford that was poorly lit and had several young men ‘hanging out’. I had tried desperately to find a gas station that had diesel fuel, as I was nearly out of gas. Finally, I felt I had no choice but to stop at a gas station and ask for directions. As I tried to explain my situation to the attendant behind the barred window, a very large dark man approached me to say that he could lead me to a diesel gas station, if I would follow him. He saw me hesitate, so he pointed to his station wagon and assured me that he had his family with him and I would be safe. He led me to a station, while another friend followed me in his car. When we arrived, they not only pumped the gas for me, but also refused any money or gratuity. As they left, we exchanged blessings. I was so relieved and grateful, I smiled and sang as I drove all the way back to Boston. I will never forget the man and his friend, who helped a scared, petite young girl learn that compassion is in all people you meet, even when you least expect it.



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J

posted October 9, 2007 at 12:35 am


Because my brother was severely abused by my father, and because my father showed so much favoritism toward me and my sister, I was frequently beaten up by my brother. Sometimes it seemed to come from nowhere and sometimes it was a fight between both of us. Since my brother was six years older, I always lost these physical conflicts.
As we got older, the violence increased until one time when I was fourteen. I was in jr. highschool and my brother was living at home after finishing basic training in the army. This time, I got a concussion and a broken nose. At one point, I was on the floor and he was stomping on my throat. The last thing I remembered before passing out was his combat boot on my neck. When I came to, I was alone in the house and temporarily blind. I called my mother at work. She brought me to an emergency clinic where they did tests and sent me on to a hospital for observation. This was originally an overnight stay until my pediatrician came to see me and refused to release me from the hospital until my brother was removed from the house.
I’ve received a lot of acts of kindness in my life, but this doctor’s action was the most profound. I believe his actions saved my life. During the years before this incident, I concluded my brother was eventually going to kill me. The thought didn’t bother me much- I was an apathetic teen and didn’t understand why people struggle to stay alive when their lives were filled with so much trouble. The doctor’s intervention gave me a sense of responsibility and indebtedness that sank in over the years.
This point was accentuated a few years later when the doctor’s daughter was murdered at the age of fourteen. I lost contact with him because I was out of Pediatrics, but the story was pretty big news. The crime was made worse by media that judged the family because his daughter was at a party the night she was killed.
My pediatrician didn’t have to intervene, but because he did, he not only saved my life but helped me get on a course to appreciate what is given in life. He was also an example of an adult who stepped in to help a situation that was in a downward spiral. I only wish there were people who intervened on behalf of each of the people in my family who suffered from much worse afflictions than I ever did.
It’s been a challenge to give a concise description about what this doctor’s action meant to me. There were many layers of meaning that opened in my mind over time. It was a painful and strange coincidence to see him lose his daughter at the same age I could have lost my life. Because there’s been decades to reflect back on this and many traumas that my siblings and parents experienced, I have understood cycles of violence and suffering in a more sophisticated way than I could at fourteen. I’ve realized an individual can alter the outcome of conflict and pain. The reasons why I would experience less suffering than another person doesn’t matter. It’s what I do with this good fortune that does matter. I eventually saw things through the lens of Dharma. I was deeply affected by the Dalai Lama in Central Park when he gave a talk on the Eight Verses on Training the Mind. I read some of his books and practiced his Daily Meditation until I met and took refuge in my Lama.
More than anything, this is for my unthanked hero, it’s been difficult to know if I truly deserved the many years I’ve had since my stay in the hospital. I pray regularly that I make something beneficial come out of this life. I’m also hoping that issues of abuse, mental illness and addiction are addressed in homes and communities. Children in these situations see the adult world looking the other way.



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Christine Farrell

posted October 9, 2007 at 1:06 am


I was running late for the airport, about to leave on a fun vacation to Hawaii. I had gotten halfway there, realized I had forgotten my ticket and turned around to go back. It was pouring rain and there was the usual Los Angeles traffic to deal with. I was feeling angry, frantic and sure that I would never make my flight when I got a flat tire.
I pulled into a gas station and feebly attempted to get my spare undone and the find the tools I needed while standing in the rain. All of a sudden there was a man approaching who looked a bit suspicious in my mind- until he smiled. He spoke no english, but without the use of words, he helped me change the tire in the rain while he whistled a happy tune. When he was done, I tried to give him money to thank him for his help. He smiled, took my hand and squeezed it and said “no, no, it’s ok”. He then walked away leaving me with a very different attitude about my day, about people, and about how one act of kindness can change a person’s whole day or sometimes even their life. And, by the way, I made my flight and had a great time in Hawaii because of him too.



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Tiffany Polisoto

posted October 9, 2007 at 1:07 am


On a spiritual and eternal level, I would have to say that it was when Jesus died for me and the rest of civilzation. On a physical, spiritual and emotional level, I would have to say it is every year around the holidays, and when I pass by the Salvation Army Church, I witness the same people giving of themselves, their time, money, and energy to help those less fortunate. I have been there myself and I know how it feels to recieve such kindness without hesitation, without judgement, and without expecting anything in return. To me, the most profound act of kindness is when you give of yourself to someone else just because you know it’s the right thing to do, and it doesn’t matter to you the who, what, where, when, why, and how. All the matters is how you feel inside when you see the happiness and relief on that person’s face because of what you have done.



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Renea LaPrade I wanted to resubmit; edited; thanks

posted October 9, 2007 at 1:41 am


Clearly the most profound act of kindness I have ever seen I am fortunate enough to say I have also experienced. And not just one act but a combination acts that brought to my life such joy I never imagined. In the past I would consider my self a child of unfate and unfortune. Meaning I came from a lot of bad choices that others made for me. Abused in different ways and not thought on in others. As a young adult these misfortunes became my reason to turn away from faith. Believing that my only fate would be built by self-destruction. Not realizing that with age would come the break down of old thought patterns, wants and dislikes. The feeling of dangling by a thread connected to nothing began to consume my thoughts. Before I knew it I was thirty and everyone around me had a partner and a child with whom to share their lives. The want was so much more than me I couldn’t speak it. Though I wanted it all my life. I didn’t know how to make it happen or if I could. Surprisingly at the age of thirty-three I met a man. We decided to walk arm and arm. Though I would say at the time I did not believe, some how it felt fated. Within one years time we were able to pack our things and move together to a coastal town. We were enchanted. And without warning and without belief on my part that such an event could occur. I became pregnant. This doesn’t sound out of the ordinary, but is in fact and not very safe on my part. I am epileptic and I am on two different medications. The whole of the situation not at all safe for a child and it’s development. Somehow the universe decided it was time for a turn around. And I felt if I were good to my temple (body) and dug deep within; Conjuring some faith could be the true medicine leading me to a place so sacred my soul has only whispered. And until now never known unconditional LOVE. During the emotion of pregnancy I wish I could say I did not waver in my belief that all would be well. And as I’m sure most women do I worried myself sick with thoughts of his health. As the months drew my man and I closer to the moment, by stress our bonds did not strengthen but stretched thin. And from emotions all my relationships were strained. With my best friend of seventeen years. My family constantly voicing concern impacting my fears and the distance we already shared. There were issues with the baby. He was too small. He did not have enough amniotic fluid. I had gained 70 pounds. So the decision was made to take him 3 weeks early. And again the universe turned. The day that I was induced I was taken to the hospital by a man that adored me. A best friend that admired me. And a mother who beyond anything I may have ever believed loved me. They all stayed. Never leaving. For 48 hours of labor. And the largest kindness given by a universe I did not think knew I existed weighed exactly 6 pounds. Laid upon my chest. Opened his beautiful eyes the second I spoke his name. So I shall walk this earth the rest of my days forever grateful.



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Granville Angell

posted October 9, 2007 at 2:00 am


I was sent to Vietnam in 1968 as a twenty-year-old helicopter ambulance pilot. I had chosen to serve that way, as a non-combatant, as my late adolescence had brought me the conviction that violence is not a viable solution to human conflict. Over the course of being immersed in the many horrors of war, I discovered in many ways how making such a simple choice opened up an awareness of how the basic goodness of the Universe will present itself under the most adverse circumstances.

On one occasion, we flew a mission to pick up a young Viet Cong soldier who had been severely wounded and taken captive by our troops. Initially, we flew right past him because we were looking for somebody on a stretcher – but we found him, shot a number of times, still standing in a rice paddy, waiting with our soldiers.

He was taken into treatment after we dropped him off. Since I had no current missions and being also trained as a medic, I shut down the helicopter and went in to help. I found the doctor and other medics looking over his serious wounds. The young enemy soldier, who had courageously remained on his feet after his injuries, now appeared in significant pain. Deciding one of his wounds was through the bladder, the doctor inserted a catheter, through which gushed blood and urine.

I became deeply moved at all the activity that developed around us – activity as equally dedicated to saving the life of this enemy soldier as for saving one of ours. Then, for a moment – probably known only to that soldier and me – a center of stillness came over the room. It wasn’t physical stillness. There was a blur of activity as every effort was being made to stabilize him, but we found ourselves in that still center looking into each other’s eyes.

At first, he had a shrill, piercing gaze filled with anger and fear, but as I looked into the eyes of this young enemy soldier, a powerful force rose up in me. A flood of thoughts preceded my response: awareness of a loved son whose family waited for his return; awareness of one who was courageous-enough to make the ultimate sacrifice for what he believed; awareness of the absurdity of war as the power of compassion rising in me became overwhelming in comparison to the power of anger and fear. Finally, as the stillness encompassed him and me, I was deeply aware of the sense of ultimate connectedness between us – all of us. Then, the anger and fear were gone from his eyes, replaced by a look of . . . well, awe – as I suspect my eyes held that look as well. Awe and a sense of communion. I became aware that I was holding his hand – unfamiliar and spontaneous for me, but a gesture of caring and friendship between males in Vietnamese culture.

We were surprised that he stabilized so quickly and the decision was made for us to backhaul him in our Dustoff helicopter ambulance where he could receive more intensive treatment. I never saw him again after we dropped him off at the field hospital – though I have thought of him often over the years. I learned a powerful lesson about kindness that day – how it comes from a place that is so much bigger than we are.

How, even in the most horrific environment, the Universe is permeated with a basic goodness that is poised to rise up from within us the very moment our hearts are moved to a place of compassion. How compassion has more power to break down the walls between us than all the bombs and bullets and rockets ever conceived. It is always there, between the lashing out and the strikes. Between our very breaths, it is there, waiting to come up from within us. Waiting until we lie prostrate with exhaustion among our sticks and our rocks and our rockets, too exhausted to fight or hide, looking silently into each others’ eyes and finding ourselves looking back. Then, compassion – the wellsprings of kindness – will win.



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Alex Langlois

posted October 9, 2007 at 2:23 am


I don’t recall any particular event of kindness that struck me so hard to remember it, but I would say kindness is everywhere in society. The very fact that society is functionning and progessing is a proof of kindness. That means people work together and don’t kill themselves like barbarians. Of course, there are still some problems, violence and inequalities and only more generosity from everyone would resolve that, but overall i think that kindness is everywhere. If we can eat, live and sometimes have fun (western world), it’s because others are kind to us, they allow us to live freely. I would say a beautiful smile by a stranger in a store is an act of kindness, a word of truth that dissipate fear is an act of kindness, a beautiful song, etc. kindness is everywhere.
Society is doing ok. We are well organized. Sometimes there is chaos, even recurrent chaos i would say, but it is an orderly chaos. Everything returns to order one day or another, or every minute after another. People are good everywhere on this earth, and the only time they are not, is because they lost truth of reality, which comes back one day or another, or every minute after the other. Kindness is everywhere we go; it is in front of us, 2 inches in front of us everywhere we go.



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Knox Gunn

posted October 9, 2007 at 4:02 am


A little kindness
One hot summer day I saw a young girl walking ahead of me on a sidewalk. She bent over and picked something up and gingerly tossed it into the wet grass near a sprinkler. As I passed I realized that she had taken an earthworm, shriveled and literally cooking on the hot cement, and put it in a place where it would not die, but could regain its moisture and find earth again. This selfless act of simple compassion for the suffering of another sentient being, no matter how seemingly insignificant, is a great lesson in true compassion. It required little effort on her part, but it made all the difference to that worm. Since then I try to do the same, for everyone, including earthworms.



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Jennifer Holmes

posted October 9, 2007 at 4:55 am


One of the greatest acts of kindness I ever received was from my greatest enemy. When I was 17 I had a best friend of the opposite sex, we were very close, much closer than he was with his girlfriends, and we had tons of great times together. I lost my virginity to him, but didn’t want to be his girlfriend because I valued his friendship more. In college he got involved with a girl who was very jealous, and many of his friends, including me, were excluded by her and I lost contact with them.
16 years later I ran into her at a Christmas fair, and I asked her if they were still married. She said they were, so I told her to tell my old friend hello. 2 weeks later I got an email from my old friend, who found me on the internet. He said I still have such an effect on her that she lied, they had actually broken up 6 months before. She didn’t have to tell him that she ran into me, and she certainly didn’t have to tell him that she had lied to me about still being with him. But she did.
He and I now have a beautiful 4 year old son, and our old love is still alive.
Interestingly, she and I are both Buddhists. Maybe if I get the tickets I’ll invite her (even though she still hates me).



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Don Hallen

posted October 9, 2007 at 5:58 am


The most profound act of kindness I can think of happened to me. It can not be measured in human terms, as it was experienced by my very soul. One day I stopped to give a stray dog a bit of food. It was thin and not in the best of shape, but after a few bites of food he looked up at me. At that moment I saw my Creator in those eyes looking at me, and I felt God say “Thank you”. After so many heartfelt thanks to my God, one heartfelt thank from my God to me was the kindest act I’ve ever experienced. It validated my soul.



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Charra DeMarco

posted October 9, 2007 at 6:51 am


Between the ages of 6 and 7 years, I was sexually abused by a Catholic priest. I could not tell my parents because they had befriended him on a personal basis and he often was a guest in our home. He was reported by another young girl to whom he was doing the same thing. As a result, he was excommunicated from the Church.
At the same time, I was being physically, verbally and sexually abused by my stepfather. I lived my life filled with great guilt and my self-esteem was about as low as it could be. I never breathed a word about these happenings to anyone until I was in my 20′s.
At that time, I was acquainted with a very kind, loving married couple. I do not recall how or why I confided in them about this, but when I did they spent countless hours counselling me with prayers, writings, and endless hours of conversations until I was able to change my feelings and thoughts about myself and become a stable, steady human being. I could never find the words to express just how much this meant to me and how drastically it changed my life.
I have always felt it was a profound gift from them and think about them with deep gratitude even though they both have passed on.



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kam

posted October 9, 2007 at 6:57 am


the most kindness i’ve ever experienced from God, although all of them through people all around me.
i believe in goodness, coz i believe that people have a little image of God.
all i have n why i still alive till this time, all because of His kindness.



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Kristin Ricciardelli

posted October 9, 2007 at 7:03 am


The most profound act of kindness I have witnessed and received is actually a gift from the universe, and from myself.
Last year, my husband and I were on vacation in Curacao, NA. One night while experiencing the most uneventful night scuba dive, we were ‘not seeing much’ in the way of critters or fish, the current was strong and I was struggling with heavy breathing, feeling out of shape and heavy. I thought to myself that I was ready for this boring dive to end…and then, from nowhere, my thoughts changed.
I caught myself and said “wait a minute, I am so fortunate. I am on vacation, I can scuba dive, I am swimming in the underwater world that few people have the opportunity to experience, I am healthy, I am relaxed, I love being underwater…” dozens of grateful thoughts flooded through me, and with those, I felt better, and still would have been okay if the dive had ended, but that’s when the dive changed.
I looked to my left and saw the most spectacular octopus with constantly changing colors, dancing and moving swiftly beside me…”thank you” I said, and smiled. Then to the right I saw hundreds of little red eyes in the rocks, beautiful shrimp, as if they were supporting me by being a captive audience to my new thoughts, “thank you”. I tried to get my husbands attention so he, too, could experience what I was seeing and feeling, and while doing that, I saw a giant lobster, then two, three, four lobsters, a tarpon, and more colorful fish…it was amazing. I was in a complete state of joy. It was overwhelming, in the best way. This was turning out to be one of the best night dives ever.
Earlier, I had been feeling disappointed and bored, among other things, and with a simple act of kindness to myself, realization that I can choose to change my thoughts, my experience changed.
I frequently recall this experience and share it with others, remembering to thank the universe for this amazing response of profound kindness to me, and of course, I continue to experience the most beautiful thoughts, sounds, pictures, and people. Thank you!



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Natalie

posted October 9, 2007 at 7:08 am


The most profound act of kindness was a thought that never came into my mind. At a buddhist lecture I attended, a student inquired about how to conduct one’s life so that one does not hurt beings in the realms outside human and animal existence.



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Veronica

posted October 9, 2007 at 7:42 am


I recently experienced the greatest acts of kindness. I had my third baby boy on April of 2007. It was amazing to welcome this little person to my life. A month later in between nursing, changing diapers and not sleeping at night, I started experiencing painful swelling of my left leg and a few days later I could barely walk. I had to rush in to the hospital on Mother’s day and shortly and unexpectedly found out that I had a large blood clot on my left leg. So many emotions rushed to my mind, is this real? Am i dreaming? who’s going to take care of my children while I’m here? Will I be able to continue to nurse my baby? Who will protect my newest little baby?
I cannot tell you how many heaven and earth angels came to my rescue. My husband stayed by my side every step of the way. My parents moved into my house to take care of my children. New doctors helped me heal with their skills and medicine. Nurses were so loving and caring. Friends came to visit me and offered me their help and positive energy. What’s more incredible is that tons of people i didn’t know showered me with their prayers. They helped me stay focus, uplifted and created miracles for a quick recovery.
My sister showed me the most incredible act of kindness. She came from far away and left her one year old daughter behind so she could be totally with me at the hospital and at my home with my family. That was amazing!!! What an incredible act of selflessness. She gave up taking care of her own daughter so she could hold, feed and sleep with Gavin, my month old son. She knew that was what I needed at the time so I could stay peacefully in the hospital while she took great care of my new baby.
Today I am able to personally take care of my baby and older children. I am so grateful to my sister and every amazing angel that showed me how much they cared and helped me heal and feel better. I am so blessed to be alive and to have so many caring people in my life. Thank you for your kindness. Thank you for your love!!!



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Alexa Pongracz

posted October 9, 2007 at 7:54 am


Kindness is someone stepping out of their way for you. I was alone working in a mining town and had to move my furniture 500 miles to my new location. There was no one to help and I really knew no one. A lady in the hotel lobby said she knew someone who might help. She talked to a man who owned a flat deck and he said sure, he would move me, all it would cost was the gas. The man helped me pack, clean and get the furniture loaded and we moved it all. I did not know him but 20 years later I am still grateful to him. When I have a chance to help someone I remember him and also that he never knew the person he helped, or required anything for all the work he did. I step forward and help a stranger and because of his kindness, I always will.



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Kristina Dolak

posted October 9, 2007 at 8:24 am


Kindness is accepting people for who they are just the way they are!!!



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Trine Aschim

posted October 9, 2007 at 8:31 am


No one has the right to hurt something emotionally, physically, psychologically or spiritually–the right does not exist.
This was the most profound act of kindness I have ever received. When shared with me, it set the tone of how my life would be lived, and in turn that I have been able to share with others.



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Joyce A. Davis

posted October 9, 2007 at 8:32 am


The most profound act of kindness that I experience each and every day, is when I awake in the morning and have the precious breath of life in my body. That’s my inspiration to do and be the best person that I can that day. It gives me an opportunity to spread love, kindness and compassion to everyone that I meet. There have been times when I see another human being and they seem to be in such a struggle dealing with live and it’s dictates. A kind word and a smile helps to turn things around for them and me too.



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debbie edmondson

posted October 9, 2007 at 8:33 am


I am a nurse and worked many years in an oncology unit taking care of patients dying from cancer. One week i had a little woman from the country in southern Kentucky who was very sick with lukemia and her elderly husband stayed at her bedside every moment fussing over her and tending to her every need. It was obvious they were poor but still very much in love. At the other end of the hall, i had a woman in her 40s with breast cancer,also dying whose husband was a local celebrity newscaster on the nightly news. After his broadcast, he would come late to her room and also care for his wife. Many times i found him on his knees at her bedside holding her hand crying with her. One evening, the little elderly man approached me and asked if he was truly seeing the newscaster whom he watched every night on the news and when i confirmed that it was indeed the newscaster he was excited that he had seen him in person and went back to the room to tell his wife. Later , i told the newscaster about the elderly man and his wife being devoted fans and he asked me for the elderly mans name. When i next checked on the elderly patient, her husband was asleep and she lay awake, i asked her her husbands name and she told me it was Smokey. I told the newscaster, puzzling over why he wanted to know. The next night he returned and gave me and autographed picture to give to the couple with a personal note that started …TO SMOKEY. I have several times marveled at the kindness of that man to think of someone else in a similar situation while his own wife lay several days from death.The elderly couple were so excited and that one selfless act of kindness made the difference in their lives even if only for a short time.



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Carlos Miches

posted October 9, 2007 at 9:16 am


The act of kindness would have to be delivering flowers to the elderly in in a hospice.
I volunteer often, as a form of contribution, I cry often and feel helpless in helping others in need, regardless of how much I try helping others, I feel, it’s not enough.



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Bill Mullen

posted October 9, 2007 at 9:31 am


The most profound act of kindness I have recieved was when my father was very ill. My supervisors and co-workers took care of everything so I could be with him. This included “passing the hat” as I was on a unpaid leave of absence. Their kindness and compassion continued when he passed. There compassion made a terrible ordeal barable as I realized there were many people that care and show great compassion when their friends need it the most.



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Karen

posted October 9, 2007 at 9:37 am


My mother and I do not get along–we are on the opposite sides of the spectrum politically, I have few memories of her showing affection to me during my childhood, and she has never been diplomatic in her criticism of me and my beliefs. However, I recognize and appreciate that my mother showed me the ultimate kindness during my birth in 1962. I was breech, presenting rear end first. The doctors on the military base had not anticipated this, and my mother was in a lot of pain, but she refused medication in order to have the ability to help push me out. Many babies died or were disabled in those days as a result of a breech birth. My mother gave me my life, and as a result, even though she rarely shows it, I know she loves me as much as I love her.



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Lisa

posted October 9, 2007 at 9:50 am


My brother was sentenced to life in prison for killing a police officer before I was even born. He was 19 at the time, on drugs, and involved with a much older crowd who were involved in the incident and who gave him the drugs and the gun that killed the officer. My parents didn’t even tell me he was in prison until I was about 10 years old, although a mean-spirited neighbor had. As I got to know my brother, through infrequent letters, visits, and telephone calls, I saw that he was a soft-spoken, intelligent, kind person who made a horrible mistake as a youth and who would pay for that mistake by living a life of incarceration.
At sometime in the system or during a blood transfusion prior to being in the system, he contracted hepatitis. In his 50s, after years of not being treated, the hepatitis took its toll. His stomach was distended to the point where he looked like he was 9-months pregnant. When he and we inquired about having it drained, because it was so painful for him, we were told that there was no point, because “it would just come back.” When he asked for pain killers, he was told he could not have anymore because he might become addicted, even though he was near death. When he asked for a stomach harness to support the weight, he was denied. When he missed morning count, because he was in too much pain to make it to the count, he was given a week of solitary confinement.
Finally the family received a call that we should come to see him, because he would most likely die shortly. Obviously a “cop killer” is not looked at with the most compassion by prison guards or other personnel. We had never experienced any kindness from the guards of the small prison in an old coal mining town, even in the two days prior to my brother’s death. In fact, there was an air of anger about them. Except for one guard…as he walked us from the infirmary where my brother would die alone to the prison exit, he said, “I’m sorry about your relative. It’s difficult seeing a loved-one in that condition.” In that moment, those simple words meant the world to me…for someone other than myself, my brothers, and my mother to recognize that this suffering person was more than just a “cop killer” to be hated, but a human who deserved compassion and who was a loved-one of others. To me the guard’s words were so simple but one of the most profound acts of kindness I’ve received…the recognition of another’s humanity.



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Camille

posted October 9, 2007 at 9:55 am


I am Buddhist and I belong to a temple in the area I live. One day I was there visiting the Monk and it had turned out to be a cold day. I was there visiting and the Monk saw that I was cold and right there he gave me the warm shirt he was wearing off his back and told me to keep it.
That was a profound act of kindness.



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Norma Fuller

posted October 9, 2007 at 10:09 am


There is a gentle man who was a passing friend of my father’s. They saw each other about town and stopped to talk once in a while. He would even stop by our house to chat every few months (especially when he saw my father tending to the landscaping) then jump in his car and continue on with his day. I don’t even recall this man’s name but over the years my mother would mention that he had stopped by again. Since my father, Norman’s death on Sept 26, 1996, this same gentle man has stopped by our home whom my mother still lives in alone now that her seven children have left. This gentle man continues to drop by with the kindness of a stranger bringing fresh produce and reminding us of the dear father we all miss so much. This act is powerful because he didn’t know us well but chose us to spread kindness to and it touches me deeply everytime my mother mentions he stopped by bearing gifts. It reinforces my memories of a happy home, a bright sunny day, fresh cut green soft grass and mom and dad and six brother and sisters and much love.



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Michael-Ann Belin

posted October 9, 2007 at 10:18 am


well not necessarily the most wholesome moment… but certainly profound in nature for me. As a runaway teen living on the streets of Houston in the Westheimer area, over a period of a month or so i grew accustomed to seeing a quite dirty and clearly crazy homeless man out on the streets.
He always wore an olive-drab trench coat, long, messy, matted, greasy curls framed his face – and sporting an out of control beard/mustache.
He favored having angry discourse (even shouting) with an invisible partner nearly constantly, at times becoming quite animated as he “physically engaged” his unseen foe… i was afraid of him and steared clear of him as did anyone in his proximity.
After a bad night i woke up on a picnic table behind one of the bars. i walked out into the harsh morning of the street and all i could think of was how good a cigarette would be… and then i saw the crazy boxer-man. For whatever reason, at the time, i though i had nothing to loose and walked right up to him as he engaged that someone i could not see while his erratic gestures indicated they were not getting along well as usual.
i just calmly asked him for a smoke…like you would a friend.. certainly not like the crazy man he seemed to be.
He stopped and turned toward me, his crazy mannerisms instantly melted away. He looked me in the eye very pleasant and lucid. He said he did not smoke as it wasn’t good to do so. But then he happily offered to give me enough returnable glass bottles from a stash he had hidden to buy myself a pack.
There was absolutely nothing at all threatening about him. It was as if we had been friends. So i followed him to his stash as we chatted.
i told him how surprised i was to be talking with him, it was obvious he was not the crazy man he had seemed. Why? Why did he choose to seem so?
He told me he had learned a long time ago that people fear what they don’t understand, particularly insane people. Being homeless, he had found he was much safer living this way.
He counted out bottles and handed the exact amount i would need to exchange.
I thanked him and wished him well and in turn, he wished me the same.
We parted ways… never spoke again…but we would see each other from time to time in the street, only once did he ever make eye-contact. I think it was his way of saying “Hello.”



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diane kussak

posted October 9, 2007 at 10:21 am


When my mother was weak and fragile from a disease that soon after took her life, she insisted on creating a meal for me. Afterwards she insisted on cleaning the dishes as well. Her role of caregiver was always of utmost importance to her.
As I watched her washing those dishes I was overwhelmed by her kindness and love. I often recall that image of her sitting on a chair next to the kitchen sink, since she was too weak to stand for any length of time. She passed over 25 years ago, yet that image of her always warms me as it reminds me of her unconditional kindness.



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Helena

posted October 9, 2007 at 10:25 am


The most profound act of kindness I have ever witnessed was; a tourist was asking for directions to a museum on a late Sunday afternoon. He was so far away from his destination that my mother and I offered to take him. He got in the car and we drove him directly where he needed to go. He was very grateful.



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chris cardillo

posted October 9, 2007 at 10:51 am


When i was using drugs, I would often ask for $ from people in the street. At times they would oblige. I would say that i was hungry, but always use the $ for more drugs. One day, i asked a man for a dollar. He said actually, i have $20 for you. I was thrilled. A big score! He then said “c’mon, we’ll go spend it on a nice meal for you” i was a little puzzled, but followed reluctantly. He took me out to a restaurant and i had the best meal I’ve had in some time. then he took me to his house to shower and he gave me some old clothes and shoes. Wow! I thought what I needed was a fix of drugs. This gentleman and his incredible kindness “Fixed” me in a different way. I’ll never forget it.
Chris



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monica

posted October 9, 2007 at 10:54 am


I have witnessed/received many profound examples of kindness in my life, though i guess the one that stands out right now is when i was in high school. I was one in a large family of children, felt lost, alone, unloved and as if no one cared. I had just entered the 9th grade and felt completely overwhelmed by “high school”, that i could not succeed, and therefore did not try. I was one of the silly students, always making jokes and laughing, though inside i was hurting and sad. Failing just about every class, one day my science teacher took a few of us students aside and said he really wanted to help us, he wanted to know what he could do to help us understand the material and succeed in his class, he said he knew that we were capable, just not why we were failing. He offered extra time and whatever else we could suggest that would help us. That simple gesture changed the course of my life forever. I went on to be the highest GPA in his class that year and was awarded position in the Who’s Who in Science publication that year. I will NEVER forget the simple few moments of one kind and caring person’s attention that i so desperately needed in my life.



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Aaron Winkler

posted October 9, 2007 at 10:54 am


When I was 15 yrs old, my life-long friend, Kate(I’d known for 13 yrs) died in a car crash with two of my other friends one of them being my girlfriend (Meagan.) A few days later my grandmother was checked into the hostipal for lung cancer. The cancer was far along and we were going into her hospital room one by one to say our goodbyes. I was a numb, dry, stone, emotionally at this point as I had been crying for about 3 days striaght over the 3 deaths of my good friends. As I walked up to my dying grandmother she grabbed my hand, kissed it, and with tears running down her face she said, “I’m so sorry for the loss of Kate I know what great friends you both were.” This single act by my grandmother on her death bed taught me so much about her compassion, kindness, fearlessness, and strengh that she got through her faith. The thing that bothered me the most about losing my best friend was that I never got to say goodbye and that I loved her. From the wisdom of my grandmother she asked me if I wanted to her to tell my friend anything when she saw her and I told her to tell her, “I love her, miss her, and will see her again!” Through this act of kindness, wisdom, compassion my dying grandmother w