I have been giving a lot of thought to what it means to play big.
Imagine you are out of university, enter the world of work, and set your sights to becoming the youngest ever CEO of your organisation. And you set out to do exactly that. Now that could be called playing big, and it does not show up for me that way.
Imagine that you have set up a coffee shop and you dream of having a chain of coffee shops all across the country. And then expanding so that there is one of your coffee shops in every city across the world. And then you get busy turning this feat of imagination into reality. This could be called playing big, and it does not show up for me that way.
Imagine that you are down and out with cancer. Yet, you envisage getting back on your bike and winning the Tour De France. Unimaginable to most and you are totally determined to do so. And you do all that it takes to deal with your cancer, get healthy, get fit, race. You win the Tour De France. Many would call that playing big, and it does not show up for me that way.
It occurs to me that, for me personally, playing BIG is transcending that which goes with ego: self-centredness and vanity at best; selfishness, greed, indifference and/or cruelty at worst. It occurs to me that to play BIG is to put the best of my humanity, our humanity, into action. And in thus doing make a contribution to lives and life itself. Which is why, I find myself deeply moved by the following words for one who lives-walks the path of god:
Be a human, bring out each other’s humanity.
Get rid of hunger, get rid of poverty. Don’t be materialistic, and you will have money, even to give to America.
I have a love of humanity. A love for any person.
Truthfully, I am a refugee from India, but I call myself a human being.
I have become famous for being a human being.
– Abdul Sattar Edhi, Edhi Foundation
I encourage you to watch the short film and allow yourself to be touched by that which is the best in and of us:
If you find yourself touched then I ask that you honour our shared humanity by truly being a human being and calling forth the best of our shared humanity. Here is an idea that has just come to me, how about for one day:
- that which you spend on yourself (say a coffee, a lunch, a restaurant meal…..) you also spend on a fellow human being with a open heart; and
- put into the world and thus share the non-materialistic bounty of life – a smile, a kind word, deep listening, a helping hand.
I am taking on this game, joyfully. And it would be great to play this game with you, play it together.
It occurs to me that you/i/we have a choice. What choice? A fundamental choice: to live as gods or to live as beggars. What is the difference? God gives. The beggar, in whichever guise is always looking for that which he can receive/gain from others. Please notice even a ‘beggar’ can be god. How? Simply by smiling and allowing that smile to light up the lives of those who pass by and receive the gift of that smile.
I thank you for the listening that your create. It is your listening that keeps me in this conversation and calls forth that which finds itself spoken here, at this blog.