“The wise man will not allow a single ill-won penny to cross his threshold; yet he will not refuse or close his door against great riches, if they are the gift of fortune and the product of virtue.” – Seneca
There are all kinds of things that could be counted as great riches but one in particular is often overlooked and often declined due to the effect accepting it would have on our own ego.
People will offer us assistance with all sorts of things, they may hold a door, offer to buy us lunch, or simply offer a word of encouragement or a compliment. And how often do we in turn decline or rebuke those gestures?
Why? These are not ill-won riches. These are the reflections of how we carry ourselves in the world. People want to help or be kind to people they think would help or be kind to them. When we are offered these blessings in life and we turn them down we take away the opportunity the other person had to feel good about themselves. This could have set the tone for them for the remainder of the day. In a way, by refusing the kindness of others, we run the risk of ruining their day for them. Let’s not do that.
Let’s instead approach the riches that people offer us, great or small, with a sense of gratitude.
virtus fortis vocat