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Sometimes I witness acts of kindness in others, and I feel inspired. In that small act of kindness, I am inspired to realize that what matters in life is right there. It’s in the way we treat others (and I include the natural world). True success lies not in awards, hard work, appreciation. We can work hard and never be noticed. And we can work hard at the wrong things in life.

We live in a self absorbed culture in a lot of ways. Look at a few minutes of television, and the advertisements appeal to the way we’d like to perceive ourselves, or how we’d like to look, how we want to feel, what we’d like to have. I feel so many of these things are so incredibly insignificant, but we can all drift into the same self-absorption. Any of those things are ok in a small way, but not when they fill our lives.

And then we see the small act of kindness, hear something beautiful, see joy on a face, observe something beautiful. And we remember that everything else is insignificant. These things take us out of our self absorption and open our hearts to the larger picture of goodness and beauty.

On a recent hike with my daughter, we walked past a little field of sunflowers. I saw the beauty not only in the individual flowers, but in the way they all were together filling the area with bright yellow – a bit like a large light shining on the immediate world all around it.

In the last photo, I loved how we could see the mass of bright yellow down the trail (here it was a closed road) drawing us toward it.

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