All of us have special ones who have loved us into being.
Would you just take ten seconds to think of the people who
have helped you become who you are . . . ten seconds of silence.
~ Fred Rogers

Last night four friends and I had the life-enhancing privilege of spending two hours immersed in the loving-kindness and compassion of Mr. Rogers . . . it is now 19 hours later and I am still deeply affected by the possibilities and hope that were and are contained in his teachings. And I’d like to share them with you.

FIRST OF ALL: Give yourself the greatest gift and go see It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood . . . and take your friends, your children, your parents and grandparents with you. All I can say is that I have never had a movie affect me in this way . . . it was and continues to be an experience like non other.

A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD (the movie) was inspired by a 1998 Esquire article “Can You Say … Hero?” by Tom Junod. Tom was assigned to profile Fred Rogers and was not happy with the assignment. Determined to find that Rogers’ nice attitude was just an act, over time he found himself drawn into the authenticity, love and commitment that defined Mr. Rogers throughout what became 865 television programs, over a span of thirty-one years.

How many times have you noticed
that it’s the little quiet moments in the midst
of life that seem to give the rest extra-special meaning?
~ Fred Rogers

CHILDHOOD AND SILENCE were the things he was committed to protecting through his work. From the first television show he watched as a child until the end of his life, he was concerned about the violence, noise and lack of empathy and kindness that were in the medium and became determined to combat that throughout his life . . . and particularly to present a kind, quiet and loving alternative for children.

As human beings, our job in life is to help people
realize how rare and valuable each one of us really is,
that each of us has something that no one else has, or
ever will have, something inside that is unique to all time.
It’s our job to encourage each other to discover that uniqueness
and to provide ways of developing its expression.
~ Fred Rogers

WHO LOVED YOU INTO BEING? was not just a question that Mr. Rogers asked Tom Junod but part of a meditation that he asked many including the star-studded Emmy audience in his acceptance speech when being honored with their Lifetime Achievement award: “All of us have special ones who have loved us into being. Would you just take, along with me, ten seconds to think of the people who have helped you become who you are . . . ten seconds of silence. I’ll watch the time.” Click here to watch his speech.

Our society is much more interested in information than wonder,
in noise rather than silence . . . and I feel that we need a lot
more wonder and a lot more silence in our lives.
~ Fred Rogers

SO TODAY GIVE YOURSELF THE GIFT OF 10 SECONDS OF SILENCE today to reflect on the special people who have loved you into being. It is both a meditation and a prayer . . .

There are three ways to ultimate success:
The first way is to be kind.
The second way is to be kind.
The third way is to be kind.
~ Fred Rogers

With gratitude for kindness & silence and for all of you . . . please remember that you are special just as you are . . . and see the movie!


Karen Ely, Founder/director
Sedona Women’s Institute

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