By: Heather Blanchard
A few months ago a sweet yoga friend and student named Fran posted the above quote on Facebook with a beautiful message. I asked if I could share her post in my classes that week as it went straight to my heart. There is another quote she mentioned that states “Extending one hand to help someone has more value than joining two hands in prayer.” Not to cause a stir to anyone with faith of any kind, but to share the importance of how we affect each other on a molecular level. Fran is truly full of love and light, and is kind to all.
She went on to share this mantra or prayer, which is her intention each time she practices on the mat:
“Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu.”
You may have heard us sing this in classes at the studio. It translates to this: “May all beings everywhere be happy and free.” Some yogis add the following as well: “May the thoughts, words and actions of our lives contribute to happiness and freedom for all.”
The world would be a different place if this was everyone’s mantra! Extending hands, kind thoughts and words to all would foster the peace we crave. A few years ago a bestselling book titled Humankind: Changing The World One Small Act At A Time was published. It was written by a man named Brad Aronson, who took the advice of a patient advocate at the hospital where his wife was battling cancer to start a project with his son as a distraction from endless hours spent at her bedside. The book details how acts of kindness helped his family through their biggest challenge, and the ripple effects of their own kindness project within their community. Brad highlights many stories about seemingly small acts of kindness that changed thousands of lives, and those that spun into nonprofits helping people around the world. It is truly inspiring to read, and makes a wonderful gift for those you love or anyone journeying through challenges. I’m happy to say Brad’s wife is now cancer free and healthy.
We were created to love, and being kind is one of the most important things in life. Kindness first – to all. Even in the darkest of times, we have something to give, to offer, to lend.
“Unexpected kindness is the most powerful, least costly, and most underrated agent of human change.” – Bob Kerrey
XOXO, Namaste, Heather