Taxi driver Constantine has a simple but profound philosophy for living his life:"It's about love. Opening your heart and exchanging energies with each other." His words landed in me like water sprinkled on fertille ground. "Yes! " my heart and mind agreed as he went on to explain that life was too short, too precious to waste and that we each had a reason to be here. And as far as he was concerned, it was all about connecting with each other and doing what we could to help.
I felt brightened and encouraged by his cheerful, warm presence which seemed to sum up, in a nutshell, what I took away from the Insight Dialogue retreat I had just attended at Gaia House in Devon. Retreat leader, Gregory Kramer, developed Insight Dialogue as a way to help us deepen social interactions and to work with what gets in the way. We started and ended our week by reflecting on acts of generosity that we had witnessed, received or which we ourselves had performed. And one of the things that struck me was how speaking and listening from a place of presence are real acts of generosity - and that they are practices to be cultivated and honed over a lifetime.
As he dropped me at the station and helped me with my bags, Constantine's words and presence felt like a true gift. "It takes courage - but if you listen to your heart, you will find your way."
Thank you Constantine.