Sun | Sep 24, 2017

Everyone is fighting a battle

Published:Wednesday | August 5, 2015 | 8:00 AM

Worthy of a thousand repetitions on any given day, is this thought:Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle - Plato.

And as we all know, battles differ and can be great sources of pain to the individual. The man walking down the street, the lady standing at the bus stop, the one sitting in the executive chair are all fighting battles, many times, in their minds. To compound the problem in many instances, 'painkillers' are either unavailable or ineffective. But hear this; an ounce of kindness offered on any given day could make that difference between winning and losing some of life's fiercest battles. Be kind, therefore.

Kindness involves generosity, care, compassion, love and affection. It centres on the good of others and enables us to assume their position. We become upset by their suffering, and uplifted by their joy. How do you measure up today?

Then there is also self-kindness (kindness to self): (a) understanding your own shortcomings and not doting on failure, (b) perceiving your own experiences as being part of humanity, and (c) being mindful of holding in balance your sense of success, failure, happiness and pain. People who show kindness to self are among the happiest in this world. It seems that in the midst of all the pain in the world, we can experience pleasure, eenh? Ummmh.

People who show kindness to others are rewarded in many ways. The act:

- Reduces feelings of loneliness and isolation.

- Decreases negative feelings, like anger and rejection.

- Promotes the release of endorphins, which make individuals happy and calm.

- Improves one's sense of well-being.

Generally, acts of kindness help to maintain good physical health: it promotes the production of 'T' cells in the immune system, which helps to fight illnesses and diseases. Stress-related health problems improve with acts of kindness. And guess what, depression and anxiety, which can trigger a heart attack, can be significantly reduced with simple acts of kindness. Wow! What an inexpensive way to maintain one's health! Let's cash in.

As we celebrate 53 years of Independence, there are yet many neighbours who are held captive by their circumstances. Their pain continues to be debilitating. The little they can do to emancipate themselves is not enough and needs a little 'mek up' from others. By considering our interdependence, as a people, rather than our individual independence, it will give us that push to reach out and help to relieve the pain of others by simple acts of kindness. And those who know me well will tell you that I believe strongly that despite our circumstances we can all show kindness to someone else, thus helping to relieve his/her pain - be it physical, emotional, spiritual, financial, psychological, etc. If it's not too much to ask, would you be a pain reliever and enjoy a pain-free day?

 

Opportunities to help

 

-Mitzie, lost everything to fire. Asking neighbours for furniture and clothing for girls, ages seven and 12.

- Neighbour, fighting for survival. Asking for a sewing machine to help with the fight.

- Rose, St Andrew, unemployed mother of five in need of food. Also needs clothing for nine & 11-year-old girls.

- Neighbour, wife walked out with every piece of furniture, leaving him on the floor. Asking neighbours for a bed. Sickly and can hardly manage.

- Flowretta, unemployed single mother, asking for television.

- Neighbours, asking for khaki uniforms for boys - sizes six and eight. Shoe sizes 34 & 36.

- Roslyn, St Catherine, asking for a dining table.

 

Thanks for helping

 

- Neighbour - giving pants & shirts for little boys - 12 and 15 years old - Clarendon.

- Nicole, Clarendon, giving two-year-old clothing to neighbour in Clarendon.

- Janet, St Catherine, for donating a sewing machine.

- Merle, Clarendon, giving khaki to Georgette - Clarendon.

-Neighbour, Manchester, giving bed linen to neighbour - Clarendon.

- Sonia, St James, for donating single bed.

To help, please call Silton Townsend at 334-8165, 884-3866, 299-3412, deposit to acct # 351 044 276 NCB. (Bank routing #: JNCBJMKX) or send donations to Hello Neighbour c/o 53 Half-Way-Tree Road, Kingston 10. Email: helloneighbour@yahoo.com.