Senseless Acts of Beauty

“Do not do unto others what you would not have done to you” (ancient Rabbinic saying, paraphrased)

“So in everything, do unto others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Matt. 7:12 NIV

It has been told that a woman sitting in a restaurant waiting for her order wrote down on a napkin the following words: “Practice Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty”. After leaving her table, a waitress pinned the napkin on the bulletin board. That saying revolutionized the restaurant, and the lives of the staff.

From there it been copied in various forms and the saying has popped up in articles and books. I saw it yesterday on a bumper sticker. What would happen if you did put into practice “random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty” in your own life? What would that mean, and how would you go about it?

Let me offer some suggestions (however, use your imagination, there are thousands!):

  • Let the person behind you in line at the grocery store go ahead of you.
  • Buy a big box of donuts for the office next to you.
  • Give another driver your parking spot.
  • Order a gift (anonymously) for a friend, or someone at work who needs to be cheered up.
  • Order a gift for an enemy, and relish the reaction.
  • Pay for the toll for you and the driver behind you.
  • Pick up some scraps of papers on the sidewalk and throw them into the nearest trash container.
  • Send a letter to a teacher you once had and let them know about the difference their life/teaching made on you.
  • Gather old clothes and give them to the homeless.
  • Go grocery shopping for a disabled or elderly person living near to you.
  • Write a note to the boss of someone who has helped you, thanking them for the job they are doing.

There must be all kinds of ways of reaching out to others. Why not email me with ideas that you have or have done that has brought joy to both you and the recipient. I will collect them all and send them out again to others in the group. Make it a practice-to-practice random kindness and senseless acts of beauty in your life.