In the interior sense, we take our shoes off when we empty our minds. It’s like bowing, a demonstration of respect, a ritual of humiliation in the face of what we don’t know. Most men were never taught how to listen. This is how.
“There was nothing attractive about him, nothing that would draw us to him.” The truly exceptional man requires a second look. The word “respect” is derived from the Latin for look again. He doesn’t want anything from you. He has no intention, no agenda.
This day we honour the braid. Zen says: The seed never sees the flower. The Gita says: Take no thought for the fruits of your actions. Jesus said: Take no thought for tomorrow.
Dad, I know this comes too late but I’ll ask it anyway: Would it matter if I said, “I love you”?
You never smiled. You never cried. You were doing the best you could. Like I am.
Respect (from the Latin for look back at) is a word for what happens when some inner impulse initiates the stop-and-pause of a second look.
Speaking of respect: men cannot live without it.