You never really know what affect you’ll have on someone’s life. Simple gestures can make a lasting difference. Sometimes we hesitate to reach out in a simple gesture of kindness, because we’re uncertain how it will be received. When you feel this way, share the light anyway. Believe it will make a difference, even if at times it doesn’t seem that way.
No, not everyone will respond to kindness. When you share the light, not everyone will recognize it. But if you keep putting it out there, sometimes it will make a difference, maybe even a big difference.
Here’s an example. I have a large cork board in my office, which is mostly covered with papers related to my work. But around the edges are a couple of thank you cards from my nephew, which remind me of the special he and I share.
There are also a few funny cards from my sister and a picture of my cat when he was a kitten—both reminders of other special bonds in my life. And there are two small pieces of paper, courtesy of one of my yoga teacher friends. Printed on one of these small pieces of paper is a candlelight meditation. The other contains the text of a Sanskrit chant to the celestial physician.
When You Share the Light, It Doesn’t Have to Be Dramatic
Sometimes simple things have great impact. Years ago, before a doctor’s appointment, I asked my teacher if she knew a chant for health. She wrote this chant on a scrap of paper for me. It goes like this: Om Sri Dhanvantre Namaha (om-shree-donvon-trey nahm-ah-ha).
I later typed those words in large purple letters and tacked them to my corkboard, so I could read the words while seated at my desk. I’ve chanted it many times since when stressed about some health-related issue or other.
Soon after she gave me that chant, my teacher stopped teaching that particular class, and we lost touch for a year or more. Then one day, we reconnected, and she invited me to another class she was teaching. There, she gave me and the other students a tealight with simple instructions for a candlelight meditation printed on a piece of paper. The meditation is below:
Well, a few months went by, and that class ended too. Later that year, I ran into her again at another location where she was teaching. I began to take her class for the third time. This time, she encouraged me to do something I’d been putting off for too long—publish my book, Yoga Circles.
A Light That Continues to Shine
Life goes, and we’ve lost touch again. But my book is published, and I still chant to the celestial physician and do candlelight meditations. Sure, I probably would have published the book eventually or come across the chant or instructions on how to do a candlelight meditation some other way. But that’s not really the point. The point is someone took the time to share the light, and now I have it to spread to others.
When you have something to share, no matter how small, share it. Giving a few words of encouragement or taking the time to write something down for someone else may have more of an impact than you realize. And that impact can last a long time—maybe years, maybe a lifetime.