Because We Care

Posted: March 14, 2010 in Philosophical musings
Tags: , , , ,

 

 

You are walking down the street. There’s a man doubled over, lying face down on the ground. His few belongings are scattered all around him. He is unable to get up. You are rushing to work. You see this sight before you. You are trying to look at it from your peripheral vision. You don’t want to stop the smooth strides taking you to your work. There will be someone behind you who will take care of the fallen person, you think.

You move on. You walk a few blocks then you stop dead in your tracks.

 ‘What is wrong with me’, you ask. Why didn’t I stop for this person? What if the few precious moments that elapsed caused a life or death situation for him. You turn around and walk with even quicker strides, your conscience pricking even more. You reach the same spot but find the person is no longer there. You don’t know what happened! Did someone take care off him? Did someone rush him to a hospital? You walk away albeit slowly. You do care! You took more than a moment to realize it and act on it.

You are jogging in the park. The crisp morning air is rejuvenating. You are calm, happy and satisfied with whatever life offered you. You are running at a steady pace inhaling the fresh air, filling your lungs with it. The sun has risen too and spreading its glow filling you with vitality. Alone on the bench sits a small boy looking lost and subdued. His thin shirt protects him from the wisps of cold air.

You are running and don’t want to stop because you have to take the 8 A.M train to somewhere where you have an important job to do. So you keep running, your mind thinking about the meeting with the group and the presentation you need to deliver. You stop at the last bench. You sit down. Then an image flashes onto your inner eye. An image of a small boy lost in the world having nowhere to go. Your heart strings are pulled. You feel guilty for not doing anything and retrace your steps to find him. He’s gone…You don’t know where. ‘Where did he go?’ You ask. Is he safe? Did someone take care of him or abduct him? You carry on feeling a little disturbed.

That’s because you care! You took more than a moment to realize it and act on it.

You are driving down the road. It’s rush-hour traffic. The acrid smell from the automobiles fills the air. You are sweating with the humidity in the air.

You open the windows hoping some air will flush the heat out. But the air is still. Then a small black arm thrusts itself through the glass windows. The hand is moving around hoping to get your attention. You ignore it but it is persistent, hopeful. Then you slowly pull up the glass window still avoiding looking at the little face with a hungry look, by the side of the car. The traffic moves and the boy disappeared amidst smoke and squealing tires.

You look in the rear view mirror. No sign off him. You wonder where he disappeared. Would some money in his hands have helped him eat something? Would it be snatched by his pimp standing by the road waiting? You drive on. The mind is sufficiently numbed. You turn on the radio, hoping the music will dispel the irritable thoughts. But you had stopped for a moment to think about it. You do care! But the moment was lost in the traffic snarl…

Everyday you find yourself at the crossroads of life. Those moments of truths rear their head but the head is turned away. You care about that moment and think about it but it always end’s up being a tad too late to have an effect. You hope that the next day you wake up and the blue skies and warm weather bring a refreshing change along with a few drops of rain. But it does not. Then you have this realization that if you don’t live in that moment it will disappear and will never come back. So you try harder to stay and make a difference so that every moment is not just an ‘after thought’ but a moment that was rescued because you acted on it. Those little moments added up and made a difference in someone’s life.  

Those moments got you late for work but added a golden second to your existing life. You realize that it ‘pays forward’ and soon the entire world is thinking along these lines. A perceptible change is what you notice when you are walking down the street. There is hope for a better world you say to yourself. Many a drops make a mighty ocean and in the ocean of humanity every drop counts.

And it is because you care…but do you care enough to act on it?

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Comments
  1. Meera San says:

    It is the human condition that gives into dilemma. Corruption that brews distrust, is the demons sitting on the shoulders that reign humane instincts… that paves ways to guilt – the stench!

    well, maybe it your other blog “waiting to exhale” that clears up the stench of guilt of our conscience – we pay it forward.

    Good one, loved it and lot of “vegan” meat – will chew on this … ;-)

  2. Wouldn’t it be nice to live in an utopian world where everyone is caring and reach out to others and the concept of ‘pay it forward’ works..?
    Nice to dream about the perfect world :)

  3. Meera San says:

    Nice to dream :-)

  4. Absolutely..dreaming is fun :)