“Action without vision is only passing time, vision without action is merely day dreaming, but vision with action can change the world.”
Nelson Mandela Former President of South Africa
He is free, not me! I often thought this as I passed the homeless man under the bridge. What a crazy notion, but is it true? I run from one place to another, sometimes with my checklist in mind. Not thinking, not stopping, no vision, perhaps just passing time. Consciousness, my father would clearly articulate to me. Awareness, a word that makes me pause to even attempt to understand the energy that it brings. From one point in time to another, from one place to another, moving without direction, acting without thought. Then I stop as I once again pass my friend whose temporary housing is under a bridge. His cardboard boxes to keep him warm. His radio to pass the time. The little tree that is a proof of life and connection. I hurry past him at first not wanting to disturb him, perhaps a little frightened. However, it finally enters into my awareness that I have noticed him. And then there is a shift. Then, it all changes, I stop, share a smile and we both acknowledge the existence of the other. My vision for myself is “I am free”, the first action I shall take is to believe it. His gift to me, so simple, so pure. Then with awareness I am so grateful to my friend who lives under the bridge because in one quick moment in time, the paradigm that is my life takes on a different tone and meaning. He shares with me what I perceive to be his freedom. The connection that is made is a blessing as my vision takes on an action to ignite the awareness of it all. Simply put I in my small way, this awareness can change my world, perhaps the world. All because of my friend who lives under the bridge, maybe you have seen him too. Perhaps, he looks a little different, perhaps he is dressed a little different. Once strangers, now because of a shared smile, I take the time to wave with appreciation going a little slower as I pass him on my way home! A small, but profound change in my world, and perhaps his as well. There is no greater freedom than that.