As a keynote speaker I travel many miles and that means I spend a good deal of time in taxi cabs where you can always engage in light conversation with the cab driver. This as you know, happens in every city in every country, even if you don't speak the native tongue you can have a good ole chat by nodding, waving hands, pointing and laughing. Memories of me in the back of a cab in Cairo and the answer to every question I asked was... you got it, "Yes." The taxi ride I always remember is this one when the taxi driver asked me about God.
Enroute to Toronto airport the cab driver turned to me and asked if I would like to talk, and of course I said yes. He wanted to chat about religion and asked did I believe in God. I thought, by his turban, that he was Sikh. My reply was, “Which one?” and that set the tone for the next forty minutes as we journeyed to the airport.
He repeated my answer, “Which one?” then offered, “but there is only one.” I had to counsel my new found friend who was an elderly professorial looking man driving taxi to earn his living. He had also mentioned he was an artist which led me to think he would be open to new ideas. I continued with a rather long “Ahhh…” - I was thinking how to parlay my end of the God question, “...well not exactly only one God…” was my reply and his eyes locked onto mine via the rear view mirror as I added, “there are twenty-two main religions and each has a different God or spirit or entity or point of view and then aboriginal peoples have spirits in everything don't they, from wind to rain to rocks and trees and people, too.” He was getting my point of view of the God question and I could see he was summing up the many God options other people have.
Then he asked, “Well sir if you don’t mind me asking, what religion are you?” One of my favourite questions to be asked by the way and my answer was Goodhism. I waited for the reply, "You said Buddhism?" I corrected him which brought forth a “Goodhism! Goodhism? What is Goodhism? I have never heard of Goodhism!” I told him it's not well known and the membership is small. He asked how many members and I replied, "One. Just me." Well he liked that response so much we swerved and changed lanes as he laughed and checked the rear view mirror again, looking over his shoulder to make sure I was still where I should be and hadn't left the cab in a puff of smoke. Those Goodhists. Ya never know!
He tells me I'm a very funny man. I get that a lot. He pushes further for more information. He's interested. "So what is Goodhism all about, sir, please tell me, I want to learn from you?" I explain it's simply doing good. Simply holding the door open for someone as they approach it - that's doing good. Helping someone in any way, that's Goodhism. I tell him I once bought an elderly lady her dinner - she didn't know I had done so as I asked the waiter what her bill would be and added it to mine. Why? Well she was on her own. She looked lonely. She reminded me of someone. It came naturally. I shared some Goodhism. My Sikh pal and I reached Toronto airport in good time and we shook hands and away he drove still shaking his head and I am sure saying to himself, Goodhism, Goodhism.
Goodhism can be added to any religion you practice or philosophy you live by. Think of it as an App for your i-life. You know as if you were an iPhone and you wanted to download some goodness so you could share it with others in your five, your friends, fans, followers and connections. Are you thinking yet how and where you could do some good? A friend of mine who travels way more than I do, reached out and shared some top level good. He purchased a cow for a young man in Thailand so he could become, or start to become self sufficient. That's Goodhism. If you normally charge for your services and decide to give it away, do it for free for someone in need, that's Goodhism.
Now you have to be careful of being taken for a ride by the bad guys when your only intention was to share some good. There are some slick characters and companies out there waiting for people who like to do good and easily separated from their money as they hear the plight of others somewhere in the world. At least that's what the brochure says, they need your help and the large dark brown eyes staring off that brochure page make it tough to refuse. It's the guilt route to good. It doesn't work. The bad guys will bank your good. The best way to share your good and practice Goodhism is probably locally where you know the rules. No need for fanfare or recognition. You don't need it. Just do it. Make good and move on.
Walking along the path, move a coffee cup from the street to the garbage can. Goodhism. Handing a dollar to a street person when they ask for twenty-five cents, Goodhism. But again be careful of the franchised street person. You can tell them from the people on the street who actually need some help as they are sporting the latest "make the passerby feel bad for me" attribute. Of late it has been a mangy looking dog. Poor thing. But it's a winner. The average person cannot walk past that dog. They stop. They chat. They are told "My dog is hungry and I don't have enough to feed him..." Kaching. Not from me however. Why? Because I've watched and seen such street people limp out of sight and once in the back alley, and it's a miracle, regain the proper use of their legs!
Save the good for those that truly need it and appreciate it. Make a telephone call to someone who might be on their own and in need of a chat. Each weekend I call three aunts in the UK who have lost their husbands and where my Dad used to be the communicator, and he has since passed away, I make the calls. It feels good to lift a spirit once in awhile. That's Goodhism. Just to eyeball someone walking towards you, to offer them a smile and a nod, Goodhism.
You know the adage, what goes around comes around, and that's part of Goodhism. Your good will come back to you as long as you share your good without intent or need for gain. Goodhism might just be one level above Buddhism and if it is, then all I can say here is Om words and upwards. Put some Goodhism in your life and quietly share it with those who need it and remember this saying Big Self - Big Problems, Small Self - Small Problems, No Self - No Problems.