Sunday, October 08, 2006

My Daily 15 Good People List

Are there 15 good people in the world that I know? At least 15 good people? Then I can sleep well and happy...

This is mantra that I have been using since this past week. About a week ago, I found myself unusually sad and let down one night - unable to sleep. Now this was funny, as a mere month ago, I had prayed to God: "I can feel no sadness in my heart, and I am extremely happy. And I think I may forget You and the real life of the people around me." That prayer was immediately answered with a dream full of sad memories and un-happened terrible futures. (As I was just saying to Yawer a moment ago: "Never posit any awkward propositions to The Universe. The Universe answers!")

Then again, I felt this sadness - usually brought on by a change of circumstances, of weather, and by an inadvertent encounter with people of ill intentions.

So unable to sleep one night, I realized that my mind was more occupied with complaint than with thanks. And that I had been thinking too much about the kind of people who make no heart happy. It's true that they exist, and so do their problems, and their actions - but they are not the only type. Besides, I was just a little too overwhelmed with all the news that I am sensitive to... not right!

All right, so apart from being patient, which is challenging for the heart, I had to be thankful too. Certainly, life isn't all "challenging" - but also "rewarding?"

So first, I let out all problems of my system. I laid down a list of complaints for God to worry about while I slept; as Hu reportedly doesn't sleep all day, night, or eternity. Then I told Hu my strategy: I have to think of all good that happened to me that day. Upon counting, I realized that it was only my impatience that prevented me from seeing that this day was indeed better than the last. And for heaven's sake, that is what a good life is all about!

And then suddenly, I was inspired! Why was I letting my mind brood about the wrong sort of people? Surely, there were at least 3 - no 5! - no, even 10! - wait: 15 good people out there, right now, who I knew personally and closely. People who are wonderful unto themselves and they have been especially kind to me recently. I made a list in no specific order:

1-6. The Mohsins (1 boy pal+1 his wife+2 his sisters +2 his cousins). We share all kinds of stuff, and support each other. They are one family who really listen to me, and I am honored for this.
7-8. My parents. While I was thinking of only having non-family persons on the list initially, I realized suddenly that this is not the moment to rank or separate, but just listen to my heart. And my heart said I must always be mindful of those who we generally take for granted: the ones closest to us.... the ones who make the most sacrifices without getting effusive thanks or even a nod.

Note: I am totally upset at my brothers for not helping me out with cleaning our house, so I postponed their entry until I had found other people. Yes, brothers, you don't know how I get back at you! No Oscars for you gentlemen tonight!
9. O. A. - an azeem babaji person who loves and sacrifices unconditionally for everyone. And for me, despite my extreme bad-tameezi.
10-13. M. Joyo + her three sons: my hosts on the Khairpur tour. Terrific, spiritual, hospitable people.
14-15- on and on: a string of people who have been kind to me or others. Including my villager hosts in Haramosh valley, and a friend who manages charity ops on her own. Plus my brothers. My girl pals... who I don't get to talk to often since they've moved out of town and country.... but who've been there for me... so many people!

Why was I upset to begin with? So it was true - I *was* looking the wrong way!

The list has just swelled on! I chucked out a few persons I have been upset with - sorry, but the heart had to sail on effortlessly through the list and not start worrying afresh. But still, after that one night when I needed a list of absolutely worrying-free people, I have expanded my outlook to those with whom I have multi-tiered relationships. People who are easy to forget because they are always there. People who have so much to offer to themselves and the world. People who on the paths of self-discovery... people who are at a different level from me, but essentially good people.

So each night now, I think of 15 new names... or new things about names who've already made it on My 15 Good People List. If I have been thinking about someone unpleasant, I bring up themup mentally after I have made my daily list, and tell them: "Well, darling, I know at least 15 good people, and somehow you are looking really insignificant rigiht now! So *POOF!* you go!"

Sleep well.

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