Tuesday, January 21, 2014

An inspirational story of an encounter by a young man.

I refer to the article “One good deed deserves another by Lee Chee Ho (Sunday Star 19 January 2014).I commend the writer for taking the extra-step to “understand” the poor beggar whom he ignored earlier, who despite being told off rudely came back to help him save his wallet.Very often we tend to get irritated by "beggars" disturbing our private moments during meals with family or friends. Their shabby attire, dirty appearance and at times even their foul-odor puts us off.

Furthermore we have heard a lot of stories of how kind-hearted people have been conned by imposters out to make some easy money or even out to rob us. We have also heard a lot of stories of people cheating people to get some money to be spent on the wrong things – cigarettes, alcohol and even gambling. Most of us believe that such people are lazy and therefore resort to begging for food and money on the streets. But is begging really a lazy man’s job?

All these thoughts run through our minds when we are confronted with a “beggar” who asks for just a ringgit or two. The easiest and most convenient thing to do is to ignore them or chase them away rudely. However at times when we discover the truth behind such a vagabond we then regret the harsh treatment we meted out to him, but it will be too late.

The lesson from this simple story is for us not to be pre-judgmental by just the physical appearance or preconceived perceptions of others especially those in need. We should not judge a person by his looks or appearance but must go a step further to ask ourselves why he behaves in such an undignified manner. 

Often we find all sorts of excuses why we should not help such a person. He is not asking much but why the reluctance to help? We tend to be over -cautious as we do not want to be cheated.

It is often said that there is a story behind every person and there is a reason for the way they are and also that every person comes into our lives for a reason which we may not realize until we get to know them. He may either reveal his needs or more often he exposes our weakness. 

So may be the next time we meet someone like this old beggar, we should stop being judgmental and give the little he asks for as we will never know he may the genuinely deserving one among the many who are not. The judicial principle of It Better that ten guilty persons go free than   one innocent person be convicted” also applies to the genuine poor who seeks help to survive.

Source : http://www.thestar.com.my/Lifestyle/Features/2014/01/19/One-good-deed-deserves-another/

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