Joyful acceptance - Michael J Fox

Tonight I am reading about Michael J Fox. He has always intrigued me because I used to watch his movies and I was very sad when I found out he had Parkinson’s because I saw my grandfather suffering through that disease for many years. 

What is remarkable about all the interviews and writings on Michael J Fox is his chardi kala - a phrase that doesn’t really have a good translation in English. A state of being hopeful and cheerful even in the face of calamity and despair. 

The following quote from Fox, 59, in the People magazine article reminded me of that chardi kala again:

“I’m down to this. My guitar playing is no good. My sketching is no good anymore, my dancing never was good, and acting is getting tougher to do. So it’s down to writing. Luckily, I really enjoy it.”

It is so true that joy is something Fox usually has in abundance.  He cannot do much but he can still write. He has written 4 memoirs and he seems to be enjoying that. And it is such a hopeful message. Perhaps when one day I won’t be able to record or sing, I will be able to write more. Or perhaps just hear. And that will be the best service I can do for humanity. 

This reminds me of Guru Arjan's Meetha Meetha. Whatever you do lord, appears sweet to me says the Guru. This also reminds me of John Milton on his blindness:

When I consider how my light is spent,
    Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,
    And that one Talent which is death to hide
    Lodged with me useless, though my Soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
    My true account, lest he returning chide;
    “Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?”
    I fondly ask. But patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies, “God doth not need
    Either man’s work or his own gifts; who best
    Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is Kingly. Thousands at his bidding speed
    And post o’er Land and Ocean without rest:
    They also serve who only stand and wait.”