Hong Ik In Gaan, “Service for the Benefits of Humanity”
– An essay by Saya Aizeki-Nevins
Taekwondo has inspired me to help my family, friends, and community in as many ways as I can.
First, I help my family with various types of cleaning in the house. I help to put the laundry in the washing machine, hang it up, and sort and fold it when my parents need me to. Also, I organize the shoe area, because I make most of the messes there. I scrub, mop, and organize the bathroom every Saturday as well.
In addition, in the summer, I help out in the family garden. I cut off the dead flowers, harvest ripe vegetables and fruits, and weed unwanted plants. I also have my own plot of garden where I grow various types of flowers. I pick out the types of flowers in the Spring and then plant them in the early Summer. This helps to attract bees and butterflies to my dad’s flower garden, which is behind mine.
Third, I help take care of my sister when my parents need my help. I make her dinner, set up her shower, and help her with her homework. I also help my sister understand stories when they are too complicated.
In regards to helping the community, my parents have taught me many ways to respect and help the environment. If I see litter on the ground, I find the nearest trash can or recycling bin and dispose of it. My family doesn’t own a car, so if I need a ride somewhere, I have to ask a friend or family member. I try to walk and not to ask for rides as much as possible, because driving creates pollution. Also, I compost my food scraps, which turns into nutrient-rich soil to strengthen the earth.
I also help my neighbors by babysitting their children, weeding their gardens, and helping out when asked.
At school, I help my teachers by doing my work and paying attention in class so they not have to spend time and energy to discipline me.
Additionally, when I am walking to school, I greet people that I pass on the street, even if I do not know them. This will give them positive energy and inspire them to share their energy with others. This creates a chain of positive energy, and can make many people more outgoing and enthusiastic throughout their day.