Tuesday, August 17, 2010

We're here for a short visit...


"Strange is our situation here upon earth.  Each of us comes for a short visit, not knowing why, yet sometimes  seeming to a divine purpose. From the standpoint of daily life, however, there is one thing we do know.  That we are here for the sake of others... for the countless unknown souls with whose fate we are connected... by a bond of sympathy."

Einstein's oft quoted declaration points to what so many of us fear about ourselves; that perhaps we're selfish and deliberately blind to the condition of our fellow man.

Could it be that we that we complain about our "rich man's problems" such as our supermarket's lack of good avocados or the rising cost of a good education? Then we neither feel nor say anything about our brother in Pakistan who lost everything in the flood last week. He lost his home, his livelihood, his wife and children. Or how about the African father who weeps because his children are undernourished and he has no power to feed them better?

"We are not in control. We can't change things," one sweet friend said to me yesterday.

Actually, she does change things. Although confined to a wheelchair, she travels with a group to Africa every year accompanying a shipment of things that help communities there. They work all year, collecting goods, then they go to the most difficult places and live in the communities, teaching and helping and dispensing love unconditionally. :) She and her friends at  Casa Fiz do Mundo are on my short list of heroes.

"Estranha é nossa situação aqui na Terra. Cada um de nós vem para uma curta visita, sem saber porquê, mas às vezes parecendo um propósito divino. Do ponto de vista da vida cotidiana, porém, há uma coisa nós sabemos: que estamos aqui para o bem dos outros ... pelas incontáveis almas desconhecidas com cujo destino estamos ligados ... por um vínculo de simpatia."