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“People livin in competition. All I want is to have my peace of mind.”
–Boston, Peace of Mind (lyrics)

“It’s not about the money, money, money . . . We need to take it back in time. When music made us all UNITE.”
–Jessie J, Price Tag (lyrics)

Last night I was watching a movie that came out a few years ago: “Millions” by director Danny Boyle.

The film’s main character, a seven-year-old boy named Damian, converses with saints and ponders how to help the poor when a bag of cash mysteriously falls from the sky. The saints tell Damian that even a young boy can make a difference, and sometimes a miracle simply means doing what is right, in the moment at hand. Helping others doesn’t have to be complicated. And even ordinary people can be saints: people who raise children, help animals, teach students, offer visionary tales, imagine a better world . . . and treat others with kindness.

That movie cheers me up when I’m feeling sad. Music does the same thing. It lifts my spirits and shows me that I’m not alone. Lots of people care. Even when we don’t always know the “right” thing to do, there’s an answer waiting: one that speaks true for our hearts.

I need uplifting and hopeful messages to keep me on track. Like Damian, I also occasionally need help from above. I find asking for guidance and listening for answers extremely beneficial as I navigate my way through this world. People can be complex. We misunderstand one another. We disagree. We argue with our spouses, neighbors, romantic partners, children, co-workers, and relatives and then feel disappointed that the world is not more peaceful.

I like movies and songs that remind me that our time here is limited and we have to make the most of it. In the end, the job, the money, the fights, the worries . . . are not what it’s all about. I believe if we put even small amounts of kindness in place, we’ll accomplish a tremendous amount for ourselves and for each other. Kindness is not necessarily easy though. It takes work, patience, and practice. Ask anyone raising children, going through a divorce, or in a committed relationship how easy it is to be kind in the heat of turmoil! That’s real spiritual work, and it’s not for the fainthearted. As the Buddhist saying goes, “It’s easy to be a holy man on the mountain.” It’s not so easy in our day-to-day living. But more than anyone outside of ourselves, we benefit from our kind acts—because our hearts feel better. And when we are true to our hearts . . . we create a more caring, peaceful world.

My affirmation for today: Kindness to myself. Kindness to others. Kindness in my thoughts. Kindness in my speech. Kindness in my heart.

In joy & gratitude,


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