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Appreciation's Sunshine
3/11/2015 4:53:01 PM

By Hakim Abdul-Ali

There are many instances in life where I truly have to step back and simply "Give Thanks" in so many ways to the Most High Alone for everything. If you're a spiritual believer, I assume that you're already there because you know that without the Creator Alone's mercy and help, where would you and I be.

Just recently, a beautiful African-American sister approached me on a local street, and she thanked me for an article that she had read that I had written in "The Chronicle." She said that the article made her think of what it meant being of color in today's world, especially in America.

As I listened to her dignified tone, this sister told me that she had a brother who was in prison, and she was sending him some of my past my articles, because she said could feel that I wrote with depth and poignant spiritual insight. I was humbled by this sister's words to me because I was taken by surprise by her dedicated support of "The Chronicle."

Even with that, I had to offer some clarifications to her about what I'm going to call "Appreciation's Sunshine" in a real sense of the expressionistic flow of that aphorism means to me. I going to say to you as I said to her, that "All praises are due to God Alone in and under all circumstances." I live by that motto because, in its essence, is the foundation of faith in the Originator Alone of everything and everyone.

That's the only time I feel strong enough to to tell anyone, including you, the reader, that's what giving thanks and being deeply appreciative is really all about is in my thoughts. The sister agreed with me, but she said that she wanted me to know how much she (still) appreciated what all of the journalists, writers, and columnists,who are in the Black Press, do.

On that point, I offered to the sister that, hopefully, expressing the sentiments of some, if not all, of my fellow colleagues in this sometimes, visceral business called journalism. I said that in my head, the word appreciation is an appetizing ray of sunshine that flavors the work, struggles, sacrifices and life of this daily experience we casually called the living process.

Without appreciation for what we do and without appreciation for what is done for us in "hue-manity," the merest task would become a burden for even the so-called dedicated of the universe workers to endure without recognition. Remember the lyrics of the soulful tune that related that "there's no sunshine when she's gone." And, in a weird sense, that sunshine seems to point out the lack of appreciation shown to and for what's done for you and others. Think about that mightily.

As you do, I think that we need to show each other how much sunshine, or genuine appreciation, we have for others who have and do labor hard to make our lives better, even in the minutest degrees. Don't hold back, and that sister was letting me have some genuine sunshine when she was voicing her most respectful appreciation for what we in the nation's Black Press do. It's hard work.

I don't know if you're feeling my vibes, but if you are, then please scope what a wise spiritual teacher once said to me about acknowledgement. He said that "appreciation is often withheld for fear of of an advantage being taken care of." Think about that closely because my wise teacher taught me that nothing could be more foolish. He told me that such a man (only) takes advantage of himself because appreciation is like oil's liquidity on worn and dry unused parts of neglected and uncared for machines.

It makes everything and everyone work better. I believe that because when sunshine, or appreciation, is genuinely extended, it starts off everything and everyone with smiles galore. Yes, I did say smiles because extending (authentic) smiles is a vital pat of showing how continued appreciation keeps things running smoothly without wear and tear on sunshine's machinery.

Do you catch my not-so-subtle drift? You and I are God Alone created machinery, and I truly think that many hypothetical "hue-mans" waste away because of halfhearted efforts in life's relationships and vocational efforts simply due to, in many sordid instances, a lack of sunshine , or appreciation, thrown in their direction.

So, with that being said, I'm of the resolute opinion that all "hue-mans" desire to be loved, and when"Sunshine's Appreciation" is not given, then one of the most powerful tonics that another "colored" soul can extended to another created being is forever lost in space. To be appreciated is a necessary ingredient that all "hue-mans" consciously desire and need in order to be balanced in life. Love is sunshine.

I shared my thoughts about this with the sister who said she felt that she needed to share a little sunshine with her brother behind the walls because she sensed that he deservedly needed a little sunshine and she had a lot to give. That made me feel good, and I told her that I really, really appreciated her because her appreciation of what I and other journalists in the Black Press do, week in and week out, without fanfare and small wages, is the loving sunshine seasoning that gives zest to our work efforts.

To that beautiful and encouraging sister, on behalf of all the folk associated with bringing the Black happenings to the nation's concerned and supportive "colored" masses, I appreciate you. Thank you for showing your supportive gratitude for "The Charleston Chronicle," and remember when you appreciate what you do and have--even greater things will come your way. For today and and always, that's, "As I See It."

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