Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Heroes of Kindness - A Review

It's been a while since a virus has brought humankind to its knees. Our thoughts have evolved from concern and bewilderment to despair. And yet we've tried to look at the bright side and revel in nature's recovery. As for me, I revelled in finding uplifting news on acts of humanity during these dire times. But the golden time was short-lived. The dark side of humans found its way back to the news pretty soon. And I found myself drowning in despair. 

But here's someone set out to tell anyone who would listen that the world is not a bad place. How could it be, when he holds the proof to the immense kindness we humans are capable of? True, there may be enough of negativity out there to leave us with little hope, but there is also much positivity that goes unnoticed. 

In his very own words, "Why hold onto burning coal when you have diamonds around you?"

Presenting Dr.Roshan Radhakrishnan's book, Heroes of Kindness, a promising means to restore faith in humanity. Fifty stories of kind hearts and a blissful break later, here I am with a mind free from despair. Because this book is proof that we can make lives better for our fellow beings. It is proof that our race isn't entirely bad. It is proof of hope.

So, what does it take to be kind?

Back when I was going through something, I remember when someone came over and hugged me despite not knowing why I was upset. I had burst into tears the very moment. Sometimes all it takes is a small gesture to make a life better. So was the case when Howie Dittman went to the Pride Parade to offer free hugs, a gesture that prompted many a person from the LGBTQ community to open up to him. A gesture that prompted families to reassess their harsh reactions to their children for being different. 

And so was the case with Glen Oliver when he unknowingly saved a man's life by buying him a cup of coffee. Or even with the women who delivered anonymous cakes to the ones who'd suffered a loss. It doesn't take much to be kind. Imagine the power you and I hold to change people's lives.

We'd think that we would help, after all, given a circumstance. But how many of us would go out of our way to simply bring a smile to a stranger's face? Like Aleem Choudhary did when he wrote replies to over 400 children's letters to Santa. Or when 18-year-old Dalton drove 360 km to a cancer patient to deliver his favourite pizza. Or when Kazi Mannan risked his business to feed the poor. It's amazing to see to what extent one can go simply to make lives easier for another.

What's even more heartwarming is to see ill deeds being reciprocated with kindness. A beggar thief being offered food instead of being turned in to the police, a politician helping out a man who racially targetted him, and so much more. 

Coming back to the present time where we're kneeled down before a virus, there has been much suffering in the times of lockdown. But the kind hearts continue to reach out to the underprivileged. They continue to selflessly do what they can to help their fellow beings lead better lives. All of these heartening stories come together in Heroes of Kindness. There is much in these tales to leave us in awe, well up our eyes, and make us smile.

I've understood that most of our privileged lives have enough resources to make a difference, however small. Here's to all those heroes of kindness who keep humanity thriving. And here's to Dr.Roshan for telling us their stories in a beautiful way. Reading each one of them was an enriching experience. I must say, though, that towards the end the stories seem rushed when grouped together. I would've liked to read them one after the other slowly, the same way the previous ones were unravelled with a gripping narration. 

But this compilation succeeds gloriously in sending out its message. So any time in the future when I too succeed in making a difference in someone's life, I will owe it to you, Dr.Roshan. I will owe it to this book that keeps me inspired.

Book Author

Doctor Roshan Radhakrishnan wears many masks to make people forget their worries. Professionally, he works as an anaesthesiologist in Kerala to relieve pain and suffering. As a blogger, he achieves the same with his words, replacing the mask of an anaesthesiologist with that of a writer. You can find him online on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook or most likely, at his blog Godyears.

Download Heroes of Kindness by Dr.Roshan Radhakrishnan here

P.S - My ebook 'An Ode to the Self' is also available for free download here

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