Being A Father
I had never before thought to say Happy Fathers Day to those in passing who are obvious daddies, but it worked. Response was phenomenal. Perhaps we’re looking at a group of people who feel and are a bit underappreciated these days.
On this gorgeous day I saw dads pushing strollers, riding with their kid on bikes, or even some walking with wife and offspring. There was one man by himself waiting by the street light to cross on Marion, and I expressed to him, ‘the mantra’. He must have been in his 60’s so I assumed he had not been a bachelor. His response – “And happy father’s day to you.”
“Thanks,” and it hit me that I didn’t have kids, so I didn’t deserve the title. When I returned from a faster than usual pace at walking due to running late for a speaking engagement, I received a poem via internet from a student of mine addressing me as father. This was then a confirmation, as a monk, you are a guru, which means you’re a guide, a coach, counselor, and cheerleader all at the same time – all are functions of a parent.
Furthermore, you lead by your example in roles that are both traditional and contemporary, the father figure is known to provide, protect, achieve, be heroic at doing dangerous things, be effective in emergency situations, and also be a donor as in begetting children.
To say happy father’s day during the morning’s trek to total strangers was a way to repay my own father who was a good dad. Although deceased, I still feel I can thank him through others for doing all of the above and including taking the time to tell me of the birds and the bees.
I had two occasions today to speak from 14.4 of the Gita about Krishna’s post in this regard. “All species born into this world come from the womb of nature with Me as their seed giving Father.”