Kindness.

Kindness, to me, simply refers to an act of extending a hand to someone in need of it. The act doesn’t have to be elaborated or witnessed by another to be regarded as an act of kindness. The key to kindness is taking initiative. 

Especially in today’s society where competition is rising so quickly from one individual to another and so on; for the majority of us, we probably find ourselves getting more self-involved to keep up with the race and for some people, to even excel beyond what’s expected of them. It’s a harsh environment to thrive on but as compared to the past, today, it makes it more possible for us to come to terms with the statement – “dreams do come true“.

But in the midst of pursuing our ambitions, kindness is like the alkali that neutralizes the acidic solution (tension) that’s bubbling between one another. That was the only metaphor I could think of to describe and relate it to this situation. Witnessing unscripted acts of kindness demonstrated by random strangers in the public warms the heart, even when you’re neither the giver or the receiver. 

Whether kindness is an obligation or a choice, its meaning differs from an individual to another. Personally, I think of it as much a choice rather than something you’re obliged to do, that you feel obliged to do just because we all belong to the human race. I find it a choice because there’s really no hard feelings if you choose not to be kind and, and not to be mean either.

Talking about this, I remember this quote I came across with in one of Daisaku Ikeda’s Daily Guidance book, which was implying something like “choosing not to save someone is pretty much the same thing as killing them“, but of course it was being said in a less aggressive manner. Sometime back, (let’s say, it’s in a war kind of situation,) I never saw the act of not doing anything to save someone the same thing as sending them to meet their makers. This has little to do with kindness, it’s not that much of a big deal. But I wanted to bring it up because I thought it was very meaningful, memorable enough to get stuck in my head for many years now although I can’t remember the exact words to it. 

Then, awhile ago, my friends were talking about something quite similar to this and we ended up in a discussion about a “What Would You Do?“- kind of situation. A choice of losing your life to conscience, or sacrificing your conscience for life. I thought I gave quite a disappointing answer, at least I feel that way. I tried to excuse myself by saying that I’d never know how I’ll react unless I was thrown in a scripted scenario, like in the hidden camera show. This just reaffirms me that there’s always a difference between what you hope for and what you want to do. There’s always this gap I’ll struggle want to try to close.

Anyway, this is another story to share another time. These are all the thoughts that I have on kindness, for now, before the thoughts run even more wild and deviate from the topic. 

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