Friday, January 19, 2007

Have you ever finished a day feeling rotten? I mean most days, I would finish work feeling good. Tired but good & sometimes accomplished. But not today. I am ashamed of myself, to be honest.

I had a late lunch today in Maxwell. As I was heading back to my office, at the cross road junction I saw an hunched back old man. He looks like a rag-and-bone, collecting soda cans from the rubbish bin. And he looks a little mentally-challenged to me. He shuffled very slowly to the traffic light, carrying 2 large bags of empty cans.

I was waiting to cross to another side of the road. Because he shuffled so slowly, he missed his green man & had to wait for the next one. In that moment when I saw him, a voice inside my head said 'help him, talk to him.' But my feet didn't move towards him. Instead, I turn to cross my side of the road.

During the walk back, I silently cursed myself. Why didn't I help him? I wasn't rushing for time. In fact, I had time to spare.

Then a thought struck me. I was embarrassed to be seen helping him. I started thinking of past encounters where I could have stepped in to help but didn't and it was pretty consistent. I was embarrassed & I did not want to be the odd one standing out. I want to belong, to be popular, to be able to blend into the group.

This afternoon I saw ugly me and I'm not proud of me.

3 Comments:

Blogger vegancat said...

Give yourself a pat on the back for being aware. We all start elementary and we all have "neglected" for "rushing for time" :)

10:17 PM  
Blogger vegancat said...

The Four Opponent Powers
(lightly edited transcript)
by Ven. Thubten Chodron© at Dharma Friendship Foundation, Seattle. 10 Aug 92
Contents (click on heading to view text)
• Does ‘me first’ approach make us happy?
o Learning to take care of others
• Negative behavior reflects an unbalanced mind
o Purification helps to restore balance

• The Four Opponent Powers:
1. Regret
° Regret is not guilt
° Sorting out and acknowledging our responsibilities
2. Restoring the relationship
° Altruism as antidote to harming sentient beings
° Taking refuge as antidote to harming holy beings
° Avoid being sectarian
3. Determination not to repeat the action
4. Remedial Actions

10:23 PM  
Anonymous veganmeow said...

How many others did not even 'see' this man...let alone hear that inner voice. We must learn to trust that voice...I too, struggle to overcome this 'fear' when it comes to approaching humans.

11:21 PM  

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