I was reminded this week that I am a guest here. I had to agree with the person who told me that. Yes, I am a guest here. I am a guest in the world. Everything existed here before I arrived, and it shall remain once I am gone. The truth is that it does not matter where you or I were born, we are both guests on this planet. Most of the tall trees that embellish the landscape are older than us, if we do not harm them, they shall see us leave.
It probably is a sense of false ownership what does not allow us to share what already exists. In the contemporary world there is this special thirst for accumulating. But tell me, what are you taking with you after death? Where are we going with all this buying and consumption? How many shirts, shoes, houses or cars will you be able to use in your lifetime? And specially, how many do you really need?
How many people in the world have to suffer our overspending that depletes the earth of its treasures, and enslaves millions of peoples in endless work, that is really meaningless?
On the other hand, I also attended a social reception. I saw there many people who have welcome newcomers to this part of the world. I have memories of people that gave me an opportune hand when I needed it. People gave me and my family more than just things; even though here was plenty of material help. They cared about us. They were patient and kind.
They shared their thoughts and ideas and heard ours.
It was not easy. Sometimes both they and us thought we each had exactly the right answer to issues. It took time and love but eventually after trying a lot we could relate to each other. It was through working, talking, planning and doing that trust grew. We also learned to appreciate our mutual experience and life.
I received so much from the people in the local area, then later as I taught English to ENL students, I always wanted to share with them how the people here are not like the Hollywood characters that appear in the movies.
I always wished that each one of those immigrants would have the opportunities that I had of getting to know wonderful people here. I also wanted the local people to have the wonderful experience of relating to people from other countries and other social settings.
Life is so abundant! It is up to us to share it and make it full of meaning, or make it a daily routine of empty motions that do not touch others.
Yes, I even though I was born in New York. I am just a guest here. You are too. Shall we share paradise before we leave? Or shall we hide in fear behind closed doors and high fences? I believe that sharing here will help us understand better how to understand what is happening abroad.
Today once more I am inviting you to break the cycle of indifference and apathy. Join others in this journey of love.