Sunday, May 27, 2012

Share what's in your heart (and what's on your plate)

"Share what's in your heart," read a poster at Brother Xavier's school in Kolkata.  This particularly interesting poster features a little girl sitting in a toy truck, sternly looking at the camera.  I laughed at the irony of the angry child teaching the importance of sharing her emotions.
It is so important to share your thoughts and love for other people.  This act of sharing can be practiced in unlimited ways.  An ear for listening, borrowed shampoo, touch.  For me, and others in this group, love is apparent through our interactions at the meals we share.  Reaching arms, spoon feeding, and vigorous nods of approval are not uncommon sights at Blue Sky Cafe.  We want to enjoy our food, but we also want to make sure that everyone else can experience our satisfaction.
During our mornings at Prem Dan, we feed the women chai, buscuits, and lunch.  Some women just need the plate handed to them before they begin to eat it with their cupped hands.  Others require much more care, and we spoon feed some women their lunch.  I have never had someone rely on me in order to be fully nourished, and it is an alarmingly powerful experience.  I volunteered at Shishubavan, a kind of nursery, and fed some of the adorable children there.  Feeding the elderly and toddlers is so similar, and I am reminded for the hundrenth time of our human similarities.
Feeding can happen on so many different levels, and I like to think that we are constantly feeding each other here in India.  Whether that be through actual food or through friendship, it is so important that we are being nourished.

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