Stories of Kindness from Around the World

The Vegan Cookie Muse


--by greggie, posted Jul 19, 2011

I've been practicing at least one intentional act of kindness a day recently. Today, I had a vegan, wrapped cookie in my pocket, courtesy of some friends last night who requested it be paid forward, just itching to find its recipient. :).

It's an interesting thing, to observe what thoughts the mind tends towards on a walk in the streets, and equally interesting to observe how it focuses when carrying an intention like, "Whose day can I make, and how??"

I was walking through the subway, and passed by a musician strumming his guitar. It was no extraordinary sight, but suddenly I remembered a story of how a world-class violinist played in a subway station once, and only handful of folks stopped to listen to a performance that would normally fill the fanciest concert halls. World-class musician or not, this guy was into it, and so I decided to form an audience of one. :) I found a seat on the floor, and gave him my undivided attention.

What I enjoyed most was seeing this guy enjoy his music! He gave a modest, talented, and heart-felt performance.

After a couple songs, I offered some applause, and got up, readying to go. We chatted a bit first. He told me how the songs were his own, how they were "under construction," that he just does this on the side, and how, despite his guitar case lying open, he wasn't doing this for the money. I could tell. Money wouldn't have done justice to the moment anyway. So I pulled out the cookie, :) and offered it, with the story. "Oh, I'm vegan, that's perfect!" And after hearing how I received it with the request that it be paid forward, he repeated the phrase, as if trying it on for size: "Pay it forward...I can do that too!..in my own way."

I walked off with a big smile, as the young musician balanced the cookie on top of his guitar, like a muse of some sort, and began to riff on ideas for a new song about paying it forward.

I really did experience it to be a great gift -- the gift of a gift.

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Puffin wrote: Wow, good idea! I once gave a box of grapes to a begging woman with a sign saying "i am hungry". I've been taught never to give money- it's not even sure that they get to keep it- but i thought grapes couldn't harm. She was a bit shocked i think, but as i left i saw her eating the grapes. I've started to do the same when people beg for money to buy lunch etc. If they are serious, they wouldn't reject an offered meal :)

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