It is by the sacrifices you do for another person that you would be judged on the capacity to help that person.
I have always done what I wanted, but however I have been lucky. People who do things only for themselves cannot be satisfied, like Rabbi Hillel said: if you are only for yourself, what are you? but to combine your profession into one in which your desire to help others is combined with your desires which helps you connect with the greater universe, which the Indians call the Spirituality. If you are not for yourself, rabbi Hillel continued, who will be for you?
And there is no time like the present time. If not now, when, asked the sage.
It is this concept of not wanting to be a participant in “If not now, when that many of the westerners or those people who espouse western way of thinking, can look at the future gloomily. A New Zealand psychiatrist had written : people are waiting for the curtain to open and the stage to reveal what will happen, what they don’t realize that the curtains are already drawn and we are the actors and on stage. And we are our own scriptwriters, we write what we want to say and when the script writer has packed up and gone home, the actor on the stage, ourselves, have nothing to say, looks around for someone to prompt to say something. Un alma sin raices es una injusticia, the poet must have echoed the same sentiments.. a soul without roots is an injustice.
I have always sacrificed for a group of people. Poor people of Jamaica, then American Indians and many many other poor people.. but the rewards have been many and I am judged by many by the rewards that have come my way, rather than the original intentions of mine which brought those rewards without being asked for. So they ogled at my comfortable life in Jamaica but not at the long days at the clinics in the countryside over rough roads where I had to comfort and give medicines to 100 patients per day..They praised the food cooked by my neighbor the chef on dinners that I put out every night in Cuba, without realizing that Cuba was one great sacrifice: financially, emotionally and chronologically. Everything was a gift. I carry that within my self. The first ever gift was Australia. Intellectual curiosity of Sweden was the next; the open mindedness of Americans came next, Anthropological education, medical education in Miami, one gift after another…but the greatest gift in my life of course is that I am a Jew.
2006 a great gift arrived at my doorstep. I was so overblown by it, that I remember clearly telling my nurse at the Indian clinic: I am sorry I can no longer work, I must go home and I will come back later..
This particular gift compares with the four greatest gifts in my life: being a Jew, being an Australian, being a doctor to the Indians and living in Cuba…these are ambient materialistic immoveable quantificable parameters, the presents that repeat themselves are the friends who have traipsed through my life…
2007 France 2008 Cambodia and Malaysia and Austalia and as I begin 2009, I know in my heart it would be France once again.
Friends, I have to be where I am needed and I am of more use
Where I get, in return the connection to the universe of human beings..
Yes, in 2009, I will visit Eretz Israel to see my nephew Shmulik and also my dear younger brother Shimon and his bride Avital.
Yes, in 2009, I will visit Malaysia to visit my best friend in Asia, MunChing and all the new friends I have made in Malaysia which has become my second home after France.
Yes, in 2009, I will visit Australia, even if it is just to see my friend Sandra and her husband..
Yes, in 2009, I will visit Cuba, to visit my colleagues and my daughter and relive the glorious moments of that moveable feast that was cuba for me.
Yes, in 2009, I will visit Miami, to be with my sister Jacqui, who is more than a sister to me.
Yes, in 2009, it would be also an year of Mothers; my birth mother in India, my other mother in Malaysia, my Cuban mother in la Havana..
Yes, in 2009, it would also be an year of Sisters: my sister Jackie, my sister Dar in Yakima, my Indian sisters, Georgia of Hocank and Sylvia of the Kickapoo (who said, you don’t travel alone, good spirits travel with you). There is a group of five women, I think of as one, all UmonHon Indians, one way or another: Vida, Mitexi, MiHusa, Noni and Michele. I know I will see them all..in 2009
But in 2009, France will be my home, that is where I would be, my body and my soul and my heart, to be particular, Paris, France; at the little house in Ave Jeanne by the Seine.