I am unaware of the origin of this story and hence not able to offer appropriate attribution. That said, the story is uplfting and worth sharing. So, here goes.
This is the story of two neighbours, one very well off and with all the good things in life and the other not so well off and just about getting by. Often the less fortunate would be at her better off neighbour’s door and asking for things be it milk or oil etc. And all requests were met with grace and politeness. Once, in a reversal of trend, the wealthy neighbour went next door to ask for some salt. The son surprisingly looked at his mother because there was enough salt in the house and wondered what his mother was upto. On his mother returning from the neighbours house with a tumbler of salt, curiosity got the better of him and he asked what prompted her to ask the neighbour for salt when there was enough salt in the house. To which the mother responded, “I don’t want her to feel that she is the only one always needing us. I wanted to convey to her that we need her too so that she feels good about herself”.
Kindness can be shared in small doses. And one need not be well off to make that a character trait. Though it is said that if you want to be rich, then be kind. And when we’re enjoying our days of being kind, we’ve created a posture that spreads.
Being kind may seem like a moral imperative. And, surely in some ways it is.Kind interactions are significantly more productive. When we leave opportunities and pathways for others, they can move forward with less friction.
Kindness is wisdom elevated. In these days when we are so disconnected and afraid, the answer might be to showing up to do the difficult work of connection, of caring, of extending ourselves when it is least expected. Kindness, generosity and possibility are all cogs in the same wheel.