The Sundaytimes Sri Lanka

Passion comes from within


This line from the book Monsoon Rain and Icicle Drops written by Libby Southwell has helped me through a lot: “Dreadful things happen all the time. You must not allow it to shake your confidence in the world, because the world is still the same place. You are just beginning to understand it better.”

Whenever people have questioned why we volunteer so much and needlessly go out of our way to help others, be it human beings or animals, I always say if not us, who will? It is our responsibility to be a good neighbour, a caring friend an informed citizen because every little act that we make has a ripple effect on life. Everyone we meet through our journey in life brings us a lesson, a memory…even an experience.

It is up to us to open our hearts and be generous with whatever we have. In fact the more you have been given in life, the higher responsibility you have to give those in need. I am not saying start big or donate money to a charity and feel good about yourself. Go out and meet people who have less than you, spend time with them, hear their stories, share knowledge and experiences. Trust me, you will walk away a richer person.

Be aware of what you say and how you judge a situation thrown at you. When you walk across the street and see a lifeless dog or cat on the road, don’t walk away. Right there is your chance to make a difference. If your car is stuck in traffic and you see children begging on the street, don’t think they belong in a school and look away. If you see a need, you have all the opportunity in the world to make a difference. It maybe one dog or cat you save, one child’s life you impact but think, even the smallest and kindest act will make a difference and that in itself has a ripple effect on society.

Love comes in many forms. But there is no point in having a lot of love in your life if you can’t reach within and at the very least and be compassionate. Know that bad things happen in this world – poverty, suffering, death, war, famine, environmental degradation – all of these are issues that we think are bigger than us. We think what can we do that will make a difference? Just because I donate money or go volunteer at a shelter, that does not mean that it will effect these issues, that all of these terrible things will disappear?

Remember that although we have no control over the terrible things that happen, we do have control of how we choose to react to it. You see, we all live in the same home and in that sense, we are all one family. A family should be a democracy, not a dictatorship, where one person disregards the feelings of others and does as he pleases. That would be how we would all live in a perfect world. But we don’t and that in itself is the reason why we should understand who we are and what our purpose in life is and be committed to making a change. Be passionate about not accepting second best, because we all deserve the same rights and opportunities.

As Howard Hughes once said: “Passion will make you crazy, but is there any other way to live?”This column was written by a STITCH volunteer to learn more information on STITCH visit  www.stitchmovement.com

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