Islands of Kindness

by johnandterri

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“There is perhaps no surer road to peace than the one that starts from little islands and oases of genuine kindness, island and oases constantly growing in number and being continually joined together until eventually they ring the world.” – Dominique Pire, OP

The long, hot and very tiring aspect of walking the Camino puts a lot of stress on you emotionally and physically. At the end of a long day of walking, you arrive at your alburgue pretty much “hot and bothered”, so to speak.

You are mostly focused on getting your own immediate needs met and not really focused much on your fellow pilgrims. Being kind to each in these moments is hard as we are so focused on our own needs. Yet we are all called to be kind regardless of our circumstances.

I read a story recently about a mother who sought to chastise her quarreling children. She admonished them to be “kind” to one another. When her little girl inquired what “kind” meant, the mother carefully explained the term.

Shockingly, the child then asked: “Mom, do we know anyone like that?”

The world needs kindness. By being kind, we have the power of making the world a happier place in which to live, or at least greatly diminish the amount of unhappiness in it so as to make it a quite different world.

I guess that is why I liked the quote I started the blog with today. It all begins with each of us becoming an “island of kindness”. To become a “island of kindness” does require us to have a desire for it in your life. It also means we have to work at it as well. To focus on it and make it apart of your daily life.

Here are three little don’ts and three little dos for us all to work on each day (I took these from a book I have been reading called “The Hidden Power of Kindness”.

Don’ts:

  1. Don’t speak unkindly of anyone.
  2. Don’t speak unkindly to anyone.
  3. Don’t act unkindly toward anyone.

Dos:

  1. Do speak kindly of someone at least once a day.
  2. Do think kindly about someone at least once a day.
  3. Do act kindly toward someone at least once a day.

The world is unkind only for the lack of kindness in the individuals who live in it. Let’s all work on spreading out kindness to ring the world.

Blessing and grace,

John

Photograph of the Week

Island Time

This image was created from a photograph of gulls on a sand bar at the mouth of the Pajaro River. The Pajaro river empties into Monterey Bay in Northern California. It is a great birding area.