Tuesday, March 16, 2010
From One Holy Beggar to Another
In a previous post I mentioned that I realized I was more a giver than beggar. (Critical thinking is so important: taking a long, higher, deeper look at the situation from other angles!)
I was then puzzled about my role as the Holy Beggar. Did I indeed have to get out on a street corner, begging bowl in hand, perhaps a dog or other attention - sympathy getter at my side, a compellingly designed and annotated sign professing my sincerity, need, etc.?
I recently saw such a fellow HB, he was about 30+, clean shaven, baseball cap, jeans and a T shirt, day pack, cardboard sign, "Need help. Please!" standing on the medial strip before a freeway on-ramp. I was on my way to my volunteer job.
Instinctively I plunged my hand into the Holy Begging purse and pulled out a dollar, signaled for him to come and gave it to him. He had a nice manner, thanked me. I then asked whether he was out of work (Yes. I'm a day laborer and didn't get work today. I need money for food.) I told him I was out of work myself, over a year. He agreed it was tough out "here" and thanked me, again.
The light turned green and I entered the roadway.
So, while I wasn't personally begging, I made a connection and felt that I empowered him to do it for me. He held my place and that of millions of we folks out of work in this miserable economy. Thus, I was doing what I did well and perhaps he was doing OK, too.
Something to consider. I think there's some sort of spiritual rightness about it. We are helping each other.
I really miss spending money doing mitzvot (good deeds) even in simple ways.