Posted by Ronan Scully in Features.

When we allow ourselves to understand the impact our actions have on ourselves, we realise the necessity to take loving action. We each have the power to correct conditions within as well as to affect the world we live in. There are so many ways to apply love in our everyday lives.

Yet, if we do not take care of ourselves and one another, it is virtually impossible to feel and share love with the world around us. As an act of self-love, we can begin to educate ourselves and learn to take care of our physical bodies as well as keep our thoughts and feelings positive and loving. Nurturing ourselves also teaches us how to nurture life around us and lend each other a helping hand.

Practice constant acts of kindness and you bring kindness upon yourself. Forgiveness is the easiest and most powerful act of kindness you can make. It promotes unity and harmony. Our lives are filled with opportunities to experience love, tolerance, peace and joy. When we, as individuals, realise our potential to love unconditionally, we transform ourselves and one another and the world we live in at the same time.

The choice is ours to create a world of happiness, love and goodwill. Every moment of every day is a new beginning. The meaning held in these words opens us to a new way of living and experiencing life. Start each day, each week and each year as a new journey of self-discovery. Let go of yesterday and tomorrow and embrace the power of now. Remind yourself daily of the newness of life in the moment and learn to lend each other a helping hand. An old Irish fable might help to explain what I mean.

Trip to Heaven and Hell

Paddy died and passed onto the next life. When he appeared before God, he was allowed to enter Heaven. He thanked God, but before he left for Heaven, he made one request. “May I visit Hell to see what it looks like?” he asked. The request was granted and Paddy stood at the fiery gates of Hell.

The sights and the sounds stirred him to his depths. Despite the evident great supply of food, everybody was suffering the agonies of starvation. Paddy was puzzled. Each person held a knife and a fork in their hands. There was plenty of food, so why the starvation? Paddy noticed that people were able to pick up the food with their knives and forks, but were unable to get the food into their mouths because the knives and forks were too long. And the one unalterable rule of Hell was that each person must hold the knives and forks at the very end. This was Hell. Each one was completely centred on his or her own needs, unable to get satisfaction.

Then it was time for Paddy to go to heaven and, when he got there, there was the joy and glory and happiness that he had hear about. But, like Hell there was something in heaven that he had also not heard about. Here he found a strange similarity to the conditions that prevailed in Hell. There was the same pair of unusually long knives and forks.The exact unalterable rule was in effect, that each one must hold the knife and fork at the very end, which again made it impossible for each person to reach their own mouth.

But there was one big difference. Each person was feeding their neighbour and each in turn was being fed by their neighbour. This was definitely Heaven. Each person was completely concerned about the needs of others. In this concern for their neighbour, their own needs were completely satisfied.

Thought for the week

As your thought for the week, remember beautiful hands are those that weave bright threads of joy in lives that grieve. Beautiful feet are those that run on errands of mercy from sun to sun. Beautiful lips are those that speak to comfort the mourner and hearten the weak. Beautiful eyes are those that glow with the light of a spirit pure as snow. Beautiful faces are those that seem with the very love of God to beam. Beautiful forms are those that grace with gentle service the lowliest place. Beautiful lives are those that bear for other lives their burden of care. Beautiful souls are those that show The Spirit of God wherever they go.