Self Reflection on Helping Others and Being Grateful
I write this piece not to boast about two recent events but to understand myself better in light of them.
Upon receipt this week of a request for donations for a new school’s library, I had the opportunity, which I enjoyed, to go through our family library at home and to select some long-held treasured books we can donate next week so others can read them.
Also after becoming aware of an opportunity this week to help a colleague with his religious requirements, I went and participated in an afternoon service (called Mincha) so he could have a quorum (a Minyan) in which to say the mourners’ prayer (Kaddish) for his mother, A”H, who recently passed away.
Of course, I felt personally satisfied from both courses of action and grateful for the opportunities to do both. And both of these I did to help others. Yet in doing so, I think I also helped myself, to see myself more clearly, certainly but not only as a result of some of the self-reflection that took place thereafter.
In looking for more understanding, I went to the internet.
There I explored Mincha, the afternoon religious service, partly because I did feel refreshed from taking the time to participate.
Thus, I found a website called “Mincha Moment: Taking Time to be Grateful,” at http://www.minchamoment.com/. The essence of the site is that we should take a moment in the afternoon [the site recommends 2:30PM], every day, to reflect and to be grateful for it all.
I liked that, and it helped me to know that I am grateful for who I am and for the opportunities I am given to do what I can do.
From there I took a tangent and stumbled upon a much larger concept of gratitude – being grateful for life itself.
This concept I got from a web page about a prayer called Modeh Ani which thanks God for the gift of life. See, http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/623937/jewish/Modeh-Ani.htm .
So here I am, grateful every day for the gift of life and for the opportunity to help others every day that I can.
I think that is why I like mediation so much as a profession.
In mediation, I can help other people to find the relief, or the release, or the satisfaction from (or the acceptance of) the end of a dispute and the resolution of a conflict which has been consuming them, so they too can appreciate their lives going forward.
So that’s who I am … and I am grateful for who I am and what I can do.
David I. Karp is a full time mediator of real estate and business disputes in Southern California. His website is at http://karpmediation.com . He apologizes for any ads affixed to this post by wordpress.com; they are not his.