dignity

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There is more to you than meets the eye.

‘The human heart is a theatre of longings.’*

Perhaps the deepest of all Human longings are for honour, nobility, and enlightenment.

We want to be known as trustworthy and loyal, compassionate and giving, with what we know and how we live being one.

I’ll have the opportunity to recognise the dignity of each person I meet today, if appropriate to open my heart to them, and, even to do something for them – something Nipun Mehta names giftivism: the practice of radically generous acts which change the world.’**

Recognising the dignity of another and acting compassionately towards them allows hope to be awakened or reawakened – not only in our world and in the world of another but also in myself.  These are quiet virtues but they are threatening to the way things are.  Ignoring the voices of judgement, cynicism, and fear, we move from being blind to someone to noticing them, from being indifferent towards them to connecting with them, and from being protective to being generous: hope will be born.

If we think we are coming upon an answer, we’ll be disappointed.  When we determine to live in this way, questions proliferate.

In noticing, we begin to ask Why?  

When we draw close to what, we see we ask What if?  

When captured by hope, we ask How?

The alternative requires less effort and enthusiasm, of course, but who wants a world which stings with judgement, cynicism, and fear?

I’m reminded how the Hebrew word for wind ruach can also mean courage.  Perhaps the whispers of our deepest longings, coming from within, are little courage breaths.

There is more to you than meets the eye.  Listen for the whispers.

(*From John O’Donohue’s Eternal Echoes.)
(**From Nipun Mehta’s TED talk Designing For Generosity.  He outlines four movements being necessary to this: consumption to contribution; transaction to trust; isolation to community; and, scarcity to abundance.)

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