This post is from the Thich Nhat Hann fb page. Perhaps it will be meaningful to someone else as well. (A complete smile -- what a notion. :0)
Being asocial, I barely meet people. From the time I stepped into Mumbai, up til now, there’s this one person who I never fail to not see! Kamesh, is a homeless man, aged 77 and he sleeps daily in the Juhu bus stop. He never begs for food or money but accepts everything he receives with great gratitude. Be it in scorching heat or in pouring rain, he never fails to smile. While people are hoarding all the stock up, he has a rusty little bag, and a few clothes. A flute. And a book to scribble. Sometimes a water bottle. In winter, under the moonlight, he sleeps and a constellation of mosquitoes form the blanket over him. Their buzzing is his lullaby. I never saw him sick or even coughing. Not even once!
I make it a point to meet him daily! I derive great hope and joy to see such a complete smile on his face. He I consider is the richest person on this earth. I met him again yesterday. I couldn’t offer a place at my home since I don’t have one myself. I asked him if he is scared of the epidemic. He thought for a while and told me, a firm no. “I have been sleeping on the road for ages as you know, I never got dengue nor any other disease” he told me. “I am not scared of any virus or anything, only scared that humanity (insaniyat) in people shouldn’t die” he added. And he wore a big smile as he prepared to sleep. His smile was the only colourful thing I could see against the background of the black and white world. Suddenly all fears vanished.
It reminded me immediately of this excerpt from Mitch Albom’s book “Have a little faith” I read a while ago. This is a sermon given by Rabbi.
HE SLEEPS IN THE STORM
A young man sought employment on a farm. He handed a letter to his potential employer that read, “He sleeps in a storm.” The desperate owner needed help, so he hired the young man despite his enigmatic letter.
Several weeks passed and, in the middle of the night, a powerful storm ripped through the valley. Awakened by the storm, the owner jumped out of bed. He called for his new employee, but the man was sound asleep. The owner dashed to the barn and to his amazement, the animals were safe with plenty of food. He hurried to the nearby field only to see that the bales of wheat were already bound and wrapped in tarpaulins. He ran to the silo. The doors were latched and the grain was dry.
And then the owner understood, “He sleeps in a storm.”
“My friends, if we tend to the things that are important in life, if we are right with those we love and behave in line with our faith, our lives will not be cursed with the aching throb of unfulfilled business. Our words will always be sincere, our embraces will be tight. We will never wallow in the agony of “I could have, I should have.” We can sleep in a storm. And when it’s time, our good-byes will be complete.”
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