Selfless Acts Around The World

Helping Hands

 

In today’s world, where every individual seems only concerned with looking out for themselves, it can become quite disheartening. I know of some people who believe that it is their God Given right to get the best for themselves, and leaving nothing for everyone else. Sure, there is nothing wrong with taking care of oneself first…BUT when it is done at the expense of others, it becomes an entirely different “constitution”. Especially when we are the ones made to bear the “expenses”.

So, if everyone needs only to care about themselves and their loved ones without any regard for others, or even their environment – how would our world look like? What would become of us, as humanity? Would we become more selfish?

I would not be surprised if we might end up in a “dog eat dog” world – where there will be no winning, only degrees of losing. Someone, somewhere is bound to “suffer” due to the intensity of “competition”. It can even become a very hostile and dangerous environment. Only the strongest (whatever that may mean) will survive, and the weak or meek will become “animal feed”.

I seriously do not think that we would want to go there.

I like to believe that all of us value peace, happiness and above all, a better world. But we cannot create a better world if each of us becomes completely self-serving. The world would suffer immensely if we do let ourselves go that way. Our precious world may end up looking like Syria’s back yard. Hence, kindness or compassion may be a necessary “weapon” to counter selfishness.

Without loving kindness, we would not feel that sense of “interconnectedness” between one fellow human being to another.

Without compassion, there would be nothing to stop us from harming others. 

Kindness

 

I have said this many times – IT TAKE REAL STRENGTH AND COURAGE TO BE KIND. 

It is always easier not to care about others, not to think of others and just do whatever the hell we like. When we do not have to care about the consequences, we do not have to think about their pain or suffering. We simply shut out, or shut down. That may be easier…for some.

However, to be kind – requires us to care deeply about our own actions, speech and thoughts. Because we would have to carefully consider about their effect on those around us. Including, our environment. Yet the platform where kindness thrives is so fragile. All it takes is one individual’s selfish stunt to reduce it to rubbles. Hence, loving kindness requires constant reinforcement – from ourselves, as well as from the collective whole. Without our united and concerted effort, little would be accomplished. It is really our combined force as a people, or a nation, and humanity that becomes the source of miracles for all. Therein lies our greatness and beauty.

This is why random selfless acts resonate with us. It stirs our souls and touches our hearts, regardless of age, gender, race and creed. We smile when we read a story about stranger who made quite an effort in returning a person’s belonging, as illustrated by the pic below. He found a wallet while looking for his mobile phone that he thought he had left in a rented car. Then he took the trouble to mail the wallet and all its contents to the rightful owner. In the letter below, he wrote that he had used 10 dollars from the said wallet for shipping it out to the owner. 

random-acts-of-kindness-20

And when we come across an establishment which displayed how much they care about those less fortunate through their actions, we are inextricably moved – like this Dry Cleaners below. 

random-acts-of-kindness-2

Even more so, when we witness ultimate selfless acts which require a certain self-sacrifice. It may even move us to tears. We cry because we understand what that particular selflessness truly means.

Self Sacrifice

 

A group of 200 Japanese pensioners volunteered to work at the damaged Fukushima nuclear station so that the young can be spared. Not many people would willingly “give up” their lives to save others, let alone people they may not even know. Hence, to see these pensioners risking their own lives for others is an emotional experience. 

All the above stories are random selfless acts from all over the world. They are a mere sample of humanity’s great compassion.

Despite how harsh the world may seem, and how badly behaved some people may be – our earth is still filled with noble and kind individuals. They would stop to help a fellow fallen athlete rather than finish the race, because they understand the true meaning of glory. These are the kind of humanity’s heroes who we respect and salute.

Selfless runner  

The very reason we recognise and appreciate their acts of kindness, is because their kindness reflects our own.

Their compassionate attributes can only inspire us, if we ourselves have those same potential, or possess that very same nature. Hence, selflessness (or the potential of selflessness) exists in all of us. Yes, in you and in me.

However dormant or shrouded it may be, or even forgotten – doubt not that we can only identify with what we already know, and hold within.

Their gracious act of kindness is a window to ours.

 

Giving

 

Here, please understand what selflessness entails.

Selfless acts do not diminish us in any way or form. We do not lose bits of ourselves just because we started to care more for others, or give more to others. In other words, it is not about neglecting our needs and putting someone else’s needs above ours. Unless you choose to, of course.

It is about doing what you can, when you can, and understanding how your one kind gesture can make a world of difference to someone else. 

So, don’t worry if a smile is all you can afford to give at this time. A sincere smile can really lift someone’s gloomy day. And if you can do more, go ahead. Spread the love and joy 🙂

At the end of the day, it is also about what we are ready to give, and how much we can do at the different stages in our lives.

It is NOT just about giving money, or any material things – especially, when one cannot even afford to put food on the table to feed the family. It is about the generosity of our hearts and how it is translated into our attitudes in our everyday lives.

For example – It can begin with us making that genuine effort in controlling our impatience or anger. Hence, our daily selfless act is in working on being more patient and not running on a short-fuse. And we can start with just our family or friends. When we get the hang of it, we can widen our circle to include strangers and all others. The reason we wish to work on our impatience or anger is to become more caring to those around us. It can be as fundamental as that.

Yes, there are many ways to be kind, and many levels of selflessness.

There are also many “formats” for us to express our compassion.

We just need to decide on which is best for us.

Selfless 

Rest assured, when we keep “improving” on our own kindness and selfless acts, we would be on our way to fulfilling our own greatness. It becomes our legacy.  

As they say ~ no act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. 

It is the only universal language in which even the deaf can hear and the blind can see. I dare say, even the animals can feel it too.

So, begin from where you are and go at your own pace. There is no need for comparison (with anyone or anything).

Never think that your act of kindness is insignificant. For all you know, it may make a HUGE difference in turning someone’s life around – as it would yours.

And if you have or know any stories of random acts of kindness and selflessness, please do write to me, and share them with me.

I’d love to read them. I may even feature them, either in this blog, or my FB Fan Page, or both.

As always, start your own brand of fearless living and love the life you live.

Peace to all and THANK YOU! 🙂

randomacts2

 

 

 

Being Afraid Is Human, But Staying Afraid Is A Choice.

4 Comments
  • Lim Kooi
    August 31, 2013

    I love the stories above and know that you are intending to put more stories in book form.. I’d like to share stories but am not sure what to put in the stories like names of people, places and so on. I am also only familiar with fb so perhaps we could get in touch through fb. namaste.

    • shirleymaya
      August 31, 2013

      Hi, Lim Kooi

      Thanks for your kind words. Yes, I love collecting inspirational stories. You could write to me via my CONTACT icon in my blog, or email me at shirley@shirleymaya.com. Through FB is also fine, my FB Page is https://www.facebook.com/FearlessShirley
      Looking forward to hearing from you. THANK YOU 🙂

  • Jaya
    September 1, 2013

    Hi Lim,
    I too believe as there are plenty of kind souls in this world who needs to be recognized,though kind actions were not performed with the intention of recognition. Loved your blog

    • shirleymaya
      September 2, 2013

      Hi Jaya,
      Thanks for your comments. I am glad you liked the blog. Yes, many selfless acts are performed without intent of recognition. In highlighting them, I hope it would inspire all of us. By the way, I realised that you addressed to Lim. Who is Lim? 🙂