Unseen Angels

Whilst absorbing the pep talk from my morning Oprah newsletter that discusses how one can tap into one’s true power (that one being me today), I ran across a mention of a video that clearly demonstrates the meaning of true empowerment. The shocker is that it is a video involving what most of us would consider to be a hopeless person. Turns out this “hopeless” has spread far more love and hope than many of us would dare. And, unwittingly. In other words, she had no idea how her small act would open the hearts of so very many.

I don’t want to elaborate too much because this is simply something you need to see for yourself. The short of it is as follows: the film crew of the reality show What Would You Do?, once again taunting the public so as to gauge their flexibilities, had set up a scenario wherein a person would “fall out” in public and response would be captured on hidden camera. Their documentation shows that should a well-heeled person suddenly fall face-forward onto the pavement, within a few seconds some passerby went out of his or her way to offer assistance. Alternately, should a person who appeared to be a beggar or homeless or drunk crumple in place, most folks just walked on by. With one glaring exception.

Angel Linda Hamilton

Often homeless herself and barely able to walk without the assistance of a cane, Linda Hamilton, not only stopped in her tracks to check on a fallen brother, but, not possessing one of her own, prompted person after person to break out their cell phone and call for an ambulance. Most people ignored her as readily as they ignored the fallen man. When, finally, someone decided to engage and the authorities were alerted, all who’d come to the man’s aid waited patiently as the man (an actor, of course) found his way to his feet. All except Linda who, having done the exceptional, was allowed, suddenly forgotten and under-appreciated by the lingering crowd, to wander away from the scene as though she had never appeared.

Naturally, as all of this, with the exception of the passersby’s and Ms. Hamilton’s interplay, was staged. And what a film it makes. You can see it on Youtube.com by clicking here. Go see it. Now. What you will see is a blatant demonstration of contrast, similarity, misinterpretation, and, eventually, forgiveness.

When the affluent looking actress hits the pavement, most anyone, who sees her as they see themselves, stops immediately to help out. “This could be me,” they think. Similarity. But, in contrast, when an assumed indigent passes out in public, most see him as definitively separate, apart, different and, unfortunately, unworthy . .. or so shows the film. That is until someone, having likely walked in this male actor’s shoes, appears on the scene. Here, even in a mind perhaps considered less capable of critical or abstract thinking, the thought surfaces, “This could be me.” Similarity. Yet most of the people approached by this well-meaning Samaritan, not only rushed past the fallen actor, they saw both him as well as the pleading “accomplice” as unworthy.

Judgment. Fear. Arrogance. Separation. Division.

When one of “our own” is threatened, we’re all over it. When, however, it is “the other,” we could seem to care less. What we fail to recognize is that we are ALL our own! Each and everyone of us! No, in a hectic world, we may not have time to take care of everybody. But we must “bother” to exercise compassion whenever the moment should arise. We must “bother” to lift each other up.

As clearly shown by this poignant document, it is a matter of seeing. Truly seeing. If we see others, anyone at all, as unworthy, we become unworthy. Judge not less you become the judged. Think I’m missing the point. Watch the video again. Those who helped the affluent fallen woman saw her as worthy and become worthy helpers. Those who resisted the unworthy man, become, right before our very eyes, unworthy. Some of them, in the eyes of many viewers, being far too like us, leave us feeling a little heartless and ashamed.  (If they don’t, perhaps you should check yourself for a pulse.)

Why this sense of discomfort? Because in some deeply buried dungeon of our hearts we instinctively, inherently recognize that ALL are worthy. It matters not who falls or who walks by or who reaches in to engage. When our brothers are mistakenly seen as different, forgiveness is nowhere to be found. But when we understand that we all tend to fear as well as fall, some more or less often than others, when we can see that we all need a hand up, ALL, at one time or another, forgiveness is all that remains.

Your world will push you today. Respond with love and forgiveness and watch your world change.

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~ by a.b.johnson on 04/06/2010.

One Response to “Unseen Angels”

  1. Thank you so much for this. There are tears in my eyes….thanks!
    When I recognize that I am one with everything and everyone, I cannot ignore that I am responsible for everything is happening around me. There is only one mind. Forgiveness is my choice right here right now!!!

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