During this religious time, many of us engage in prayerful reflection and family traditions. We think about our roles in charity, voluntarism, and community wellbeing. Participation in activities that aim to promote wellbeing in others is usually hidden from view.

People are uncomfortable with claiming positive contributions to society, as being anything less than humble is regarded as pompous and arrogant. In my view, Canadians have long suffered from a poor sense of self esteem, failing to own the positive ways we have shaped local, national, and international initiatives.

We often defer to others to claim what is truly Canadian in character and deed. Certainly, we can never forget the perils of nationalism. Our diverse citizenship reminds us to never become so bold to think as Canadians, we know best. A gentle breeze, a walk in a protected conservation area, or a breathtaking mountain view are some of the important ways we experience freedom.

During holidays, we reflect on those people who paid for our freedom and remain forever grateful to those in our lives who helped us along the way. What are the ways you plan to embrace the gentle in your own hearts and share it with others ? Are you prepared for unexpected responses to a gentle embrace ? Is the gentle even possible in our modern times? If not, what can you do to be the difference ?

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