A Sentiment

God knew what He was doing when He sent a gentle breeze and brought a lovely butterfly to set my heart at ease. The happiness of your friendship and the gentleness of your words have touched my life in special ways and now I feel assured. Thank you for your loyalty and for reading everyday. I only hope you find things to make a happy day.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Muhammad Ali and Me

Muhammad Ali's message to the world, when he was asked: What would you like people to think about you when you're gone? This is written just as he said it while he could still talk.

He took a few cups of love.

He took one table spoon of patience.

One table spoon, tea-spoon of generosity.

He took a few cups of love.

He took one table spoon of patience.

One table spoon, tea-spoon of generosity.

One pint of kindness.

He took one quart of laughter.

One pinch of concern.

And then he mixed willingness with happiness.

He added lots of faith.

And he stirred it up well.

Then he spread it over a span of a lifetime.

And he served it to each and every deserving person he met.

As the stars came out and shone for Haiti, it was boxing legend Muhammad Ali who spoke loudest by sitting there in silence... about the need for charity in times of hardship.
Appearing on stage in a wheelchair and unable to speak, the former boxer – who suffers from Parkinson’s Disease – looked on as comedian Chris Rock read out a speech he prepared earlier. He sat in the wheelchair looking up at Chris, while he was reading what Ali would have said if he could have. It was, for me, along with those tragic pictures, the most touching moment of the telethon. Here is what he wrote for Chris to say.
“By any name, charity can bring the people of our planet together … charity changes lives and saves lives … we call upon all the good people in every corner of the world to help … please give now,” he said. “In my life I’ve been called by many names. There are many names for the charity of the people of the earth and one of them is Zakat.” I looked up the meaning of "Zakat" and here is what I found...(One of the most important principles of Islam is that all things belong to God, and that wealth is therefore held by human beings in trust. The word zakat means both 'purification' and 'growth'. Our possessions are purified by setting aside a proportion for those in need, and, like the pruning of plants, this cutting back balances and encourages new growth.) His appearance brought tears to my eyes.

I love boxing...When I was a girl...my sweet little old mother would listen to the Friday night fights and when TV came on the scene she loved wrestling. We all did in the 50's...TV programs were very few. We would go to the neighbor's and line up the kitchen chairs, and bring the dip and chips, and watch Gorgeous George wrestling. Watching boxing is something that I share with my husband too. He used to box, in his youth, and tells me so many stories about his experiences. He grew up in the 50's also and we share so many memories. We follow the sport now and really enjoy a good match.
Muhammad Ali doesn't speak anymore and the days since he floated like a butterfly and stung like a bee are long over.(it must have been the hardest handicap for this man who loved to talk and regale us with his poems and banter)What remains intact is the indomitable will and the sense of devotion to his public. When Muhammad Ali arrived in Britain...on a fundraising tour for his foundation, he was determined not to use the wheelchair that he relies on most of the time because of Parkinson's Disease. Aided by his wife Lonnie and their host Ricky Hatton, who showed the couple round his gym, the legendary boxer raised his arm to greet the crowds. Then for a few seconds he took off the sunglasses shading his eyes, allowing well-wishers to see his face more clearly .Once inside, the sports hero – who was in Britain to say goodbye to fans before he becomes too frail to travel – was presented with a cake. The initials on top read: 'GOAT' - Greatest Of All Time. "He was going to come in a wheelchair initially but then he said I can't have Ricky Hatton meet me in a wheelchair, I've got to walk in," explained Ricky, himself a boxer."That's a boxer through and through. That's a boxer's mentality and that's a champion's mentality."He's not just one of the greatest boxers of all time, he's one of the greatest men of all time."Bearing in mind how poorly he is, for him still to come to the gym, raise his hands to the fans and have a picture, that's why he's the greatest."

Well, the greatest was at the telethon.... he is always there for a good cause...The telethon brought in millions and millions of dollars. I hope that it helps rebuild the country that has suffered so long.



Barbee' said...

Amen, I agree!

Noelle said...

Hello Balisha,

I hope others follow his lead and give to Haiti. Such a horrible tragedy that has brought the best in so many.

PS. I love the new look of your blog.

garden girl said...

I've never been a boxing fan Balisha, but Muhammed Ali wins my admiration and respect for what he's done, and continues to do helping others, in spite of his own physical challenges.

cwa said...

The moment with Muhammad Ali was extremely poignant. I sat there in silence soaking in the message. It reminded me how often God uses our suffering to make us more sensitive to the pain of others.

Rose said...

I watched the telethon Friday night, and I agree Ali's appearance was one of the most moving of the evening. I thought the whole telethon was inspiring, and I hope that it prompted many to donate to this cause. The people of Haiti are going to need help from everyone to rebuild their shattered country.

I'm not a fan of boxing, but I do remember listening to the fights when Sonny Liston, Ali, and others of that time period were boxing. I remember seeing Ali light the Olympic torch as well--was that in the last Olympics? He has become an inspiration for so many.

Thanks for dropping by and for the tip about Ellen's show--I'll be gone tomorrow, so I'll have to record it.

Balisha said...

I really don't know any woman who likes boxing.I guess that Dad working at night and me being there with my Mom...who loved it...really rubbed off on me. She was more of an influence that I realized. She was a typical Mom...who sewed all my clothes, loved to cook but never gardened.She loved TV and her soap operas. I guess she would be the typical June Cleaver of her day.

Amber Star said...

I remember watching Ali box. My dad and I used to watch the Friday night fights or Saturday night fights together, if it was my weekend with him. Mohammed Ali came from Cassius Clay and he was a real man. He lost some fans when he converted to being a Muslim, but he was just so good I couldn't be upset with him. There is a commercial that uses his voice saying "Float Like a butterfly, Sting like a Bee". It causes me to remember some fun times with my dad and how fun Muhammed Ali was.

It was nice when his daughter was on dancing with the stars. She is a beautiful woman and her dad and mom showed up for her dance sequence. It was like seeing royalty.

Anonymous said...

I like Ali a lot. I will have to do a blog on him one day since he is from Kentucky. My parents loved wresting and we watched at the neighbors, too, before we got our first t.v. I remember hearing those wrestlers names. I really enjoyed the telethon and Ali.