Stories are some of the most powerful tools that we can use in teaching our children the lessons of life. Everyone loves a good story, and when the story is from our own experiences, the impact of the lesson is even greater.
This is a photo of my grandfather (my dad’s dad) holding my daughter when she was still knee high to a grasshopper. One of the greatest life lessons I have ever learned came from a story about him, told to me by my grandmother when she was teaching me the importance of human compassion and the power of Karma:
My grandfather was a doctor in his youth, and served as a medic for the Democratic Southern Forces during the Vietnam war, fighting against the invasion of the Communist North.
In 1975, after the fall of South Vietnam’s capital city of Saigon and the resulting end of the war, the Communist Regime took power and one of the first things they did was draft a list of known members and allies of the Southern regime… a kill list… and my grandfather’s name was on it.
During times of peace, before the war that destroyed our homeland had begun, my grandfather was a very successful man of medicine. He treated countless patients with ailments of all sorts, and charged for his services accordingly.
However, unlike many doctors both at that time and (sadly) now, money was not the be-all end-all of his life’s work. When the poor people of the town came to him with no money, he treated them anyhow… with no thought of repayment or favors in return. He just did it out of compassion for his fellow man, and the belief that it was the right thing to do.
Over time, he developed a reputation in the region as a kind-hearted healer, and earned the respect of the citizens who lived there.
It was Fate that one of these citizens happened to work in the office where the order was given to arrest my grandfather for execution, and when the worker discovered the news, he took action.
In the dark of night, he risked his own life and family by sending his wife back to town to warn my family of what was to come… and because of this, my grandfather was able to escape in the cover of darkness to the safety of hiding.
My grandmother, with conviction, believes in our duty as people to live with compassion and help those in need regardless of their status in society. She believes that this builds good Karma… and that Karma was what saved her husband’s life.
With that, I hope that today has found you with joy. I will be a little light on blog entries for a while as I am switching gears to work on my novel.
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