Every day at New Life Foundation residents and volunteers carry out a working meditation. This includes anything from helping to make meals in the kitchen, to working in the fields, or turning over the compost!
One of the more recent additions to the working meditation is “Random Acts of Kindness”. It has definitely been a challenge to come up with new things every day and it has become a bit of fun competition to see who can be the most original or most enthusiastic. For me, so far, people will have to go a long way to top former resident Uwe’s day of kindness. He popped up everywhere, filling up water bottles for those working in the fields, washing everyone’s lunch plates, and having a ready supply of limes to cut up and put in people’s water bottles. He even walked around to all the workers supplying them with a selection of freshly cut fruits. What made it all the more special was that his joy in being of service just shone from him – his enthusiasm and sheer pleasure and excitement at making people smile made us smile all the more – and his chance to shine let everyone in the community see what a great joyous heart lay underneath a somewhat shy exterior.
Another high for me in the loving kindness acts has come from volunteer Ellie, who has now returned to be a resident for a month. Ellie took inspiration from the ethos of New Life Foundation and adorned each dining room table with a beautiful piece of prose. Titles included:
- Gift of your presence
- Expressing love and admiration
- Forgiveness, and
- A heartfelt prayer
Some of it, such as the prayers, was prose that had touched her deeply. The others were words that came from her heart and provided great inspiration for those of us blessed to read them.
This is the text:
“Please take the time to get to know me
And you will see, I’m very much like you
I too try to hide my insecurities, pains and sadness
If I seem nonchalant, it’s my crippling shyness
If I laugh too loud, it’s to drown out the sound of my loneliness
If I am rude, I am hurting inside or if I seem insincere I may just want you to like me
Let us take the time to understand each other
With kindness, compassion and acceptance
Thus taking down our defense barriers, brick by brick
So we can get to a place where we are free to be ourselves and live in unity
Love breeds compassion
Let it flow”.