When we think continually about ‟I! I! I!” and only talk about ourselves, we considerably reduce the size of the world that we want to be ours. The events that occur in the narrow sphere of selfishness affect us deeply and will certainly disturb our inner peace. The situation is very different when we feel primarily concerned with others and bear in mind that they are so numerous that, in comparison, our own personal concerns are negligible. If on top of that our desire is to remove their suffering, we will not get discouraged. It will give us more courage and determination, in contrast to self-pity, which depresses us and reduces our courage.
Oral Teachings given in Schvenedingen Germany, 1998.
Hal works for the Homeless Empowerment Project (Vendor License 135) selling newspapers to raise money for Boston’s street people. He lives in the South End near Mike’s Diner. He was a roofer but has had both knees and a hip replaced.
He’s clean, works hard, dresses well and is well spoken. But he also is black and often not given the recognition he deserves.
The saying “old age is not for sissies” struck me as being appropriate for this image. This gentleman was walking very slowly and deliberately down this empty corridor. He struck me as resigned to his condition and particularly brave about it.
I don’t know what his name is but he’s been doing his radio gig for decades now from his perch on a stone wall in Boston Common. He “broadcasts” the news at the top of his lungs as people, hurring to work, stream by. Today it was “It’s gonna rain hard at noon…the Bruins won in overtime 2 to 1 and the Celtics lost to the Lakers.”
It wasn’t raining when I took this picture but I think the “radio” thought it made for a better background. (It did.)