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A few years ago, I took a sightseeing trip to Washington, D.C. I saw many of our nation's treasures, and I also saw a lot of our fellow citizens on the street — unfortunate ones, like panhandlers and homeless folks.
Standing outside the Ronald Reagan Center, I heard a voice say, "Can you help me?" When I turned around, I saw an elderly blind woman with her hand extended. In a natural reflex, I reached in to my pocket, pulled out all of my loose change and placed it on her hand without even looking at her. I was annoyed at being bothered by a beggar.
But the blind woman smiled and said, "I don't want your money. I just need help finding the post office."
In an instant, I realized what I had done. I acted with prejudice — I judged another person simply for what I assumed she had to be.
I hated what I saw in myself. This incident re-awakened my core belief. It reaffirmed that I believe in humility, even though I'd lost it for a moment.
The thing I had forgotten about myself is that I am an immigrant. I left Honduras and arrived in the U.S. at the age of 15. I started my new life with two suitcases, my brother and sister, and a strong, no-nonsense mother. Through the years, I have been a dishwasher, roofer, cashier, mechanic and pizza delivery driver among many other humble jobs, and eventually I became a network engineer.
In my own life, I have experienced many open acts of prejudice. I remember a time, at age 17 — I was a busboy, and I heard a father tell his little boy that if he did not do well in school, he would end up like me. I have also witnessed the same treatment of family and friends, so I know what it's like, and I should have known better.
But now, living in my American middle-class lifestyle, it is too easy to forget my past, to forget who I am and where I have been, and to lose sight of where I want to be going. That blind woman on the streets of Washington, D.C., cured me of my self-induced blindness. She reminded me of my belief in humility and to always keep my eyes and heart open.
By the way, I helped that lady to the post office. And in writing this essay, I hope to thank her for the priceless lesson.
by Felipe Morales
Originally posted by aleon1018
I was homeless by choice for awhile and wasn't very good at it.
Originally posted by DangerDeath
Assuming is not sign of intelligence.
I once assumed I was intelligent...
Originally posted by ExquisitExamplE
In pop culture, the word cynicism generally describes the opinions of those who see self-interest as the primary motive of human behaviour, and who disincline to rely upon sincerity, human virtue, or altruism as motivations.
Oscar Wilde described a cynic as 'A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing'. Others define cynicism as the direct opposite of fanaticism, thus also implying agnosticism as its integral part.
On the other hand, the Oxford English Dictionary suggests as the usual modern definition (per cynic): showing "a disposition to disbelieve in the sincerity or goodness of human motives and actions" and a tendency "to express this by sneers and sarcasms".
Why would one wish to fashion themselves in such a manner? I like sarcasm as much as the next guy, but I do have an innate belief in the goodness of humanity. I'm sorry you've lost yours, or thrown it aside. I have prayed for you. My will is destiny manifested.
But he said he would carry my handbag for me officer