I Want to Be Kind When I Grow Up

When the Boy in The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse written by Charlie Mackesy is asked what he wants to be when he grows up, his answer is “Kind.”  Later in the book Horse states, “Nothing beats kindness. It sits quietly beyond all things.” I thought for a while about kindness sitting quietly beyond all things. Why does kindness choose to be unobtrusive? Why does kindness sit quietly? In what ways is kindness beyond all things? When I reflect on the kind deeds done to me, they really do seem to have one thing in common—a quiet, hidden, almost shy approach. Some virtues are measurable; for example, patience might endure hours, days, weeks, years. Other virtues are obvious. Courage is seen in remarkable deeds of heroism. Mildness surrounds a person with an aura. Wisdom and counsel are heard through words. Reverence is witnessed in its hushed tones, its folded hands and bowed head. But, according to Horse, nothing beats kindness. It just sits quietly beyond all things—beyond all virtues like an almost imperceptible fragrance, like a faint melody of chimes carried in the wind, like an invisible guardian angel. Kindness is the faint echo trailing every good deed and compassionate word. Nothing beats kindness.

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