Ain’t That the Truth

It seems old Winnie still has a lot of fans. I got some interesting responses, both online and privately, after I quoted Winston Churchill on this blog. Actually, I quoted reader Christine quoting Churchill, and it seemed to strike a chord with people. We enjoy pithy sayings from eminent individuals, don’t we? For one thing, these truisms are usually exceedingly well articulated – these folks are poets or leaders or orators or academics, so they know how to turn a phrase. But it’s also stirring when we come across a piece of wisdom that simply rings true, sometimes on a most fundamentally human level.

The other day, a faithful longtime 50 Good Deeds reader – okay, it was my dad – sent me a link to the Power of Kindness Movie. If you can get past the soppy background meditation music (think dental office meets MIDI file), this three-and-a-half-minute video features one-liners about kindness from a run of well-known men and women. Churchill in fact starts us off but we also hear from Mark Twain and Leo Buscaglia and Princess Di and Ralph Waldo Emerson, among others. There are some stunning nature scenes for your pleasure.

What’s your favourite inspirational quote about kindness? Here are a few bonus tracks, not included in the video:
Dalai Lama: “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” (Yeah!) And: “If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”
Eleanor Roosevelt: “When you cease to make a contribution, you begin to die.”
Warren Buffett: “Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.: “Life’s most urgent question is: what are you doing for others?”
Mohandas Gandhi: “Man becomes great exactly in the degree in which he works for the welfare of his fellow-men.” Plus: “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
Nelson Mandela: “A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.”

If you like these, then have a peek at the Power of Kindness Movie. Call it your mid-week lift: It worked for me. Thanks, Pop.

4 responses to “Ain’t That the Truth

  1. Lovely video

  2. My mom gave me two good phrases that have guided me well:

    If in doubt, don’t.

    Always be honest, even if you can’t always be kind.

    Of course, when you have to be honest, but not necessarily kind, you can still be nice.

    Thanks again for the link. I’ll have to check to see if my web stats are rising.

  3. I’ve had people ask me what’s in it for me when I want to do something that will help others and not necessarily benefit me monetarily or in any other way. What is in it for me is the knowledge that I’m contributing and, selfishly and privately, one hell of a great feeling. What else do you live your life to do? If we all contributed, what a world it would be.

  4. Thanks for the comments! Christine, I agree with the first of your mom’s pet phrases, but for me, the second definitely depends on the circumstances (when someone asks “do I look fat?”, I think kindness may trump honesty!). Linda, lovely.

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