Jamal, a retired Navy veteran, served in the Army for over 30 years. He shared his experience of serving in the Navy with our volunteers in the Disaster Recovery Center.
In the face of disaster, he knew how to prepare a Safe Bag to duplicate important documents and how to change clothes and food in a short time. Although the fire spread quickly, and thousands of neighborhood houses were destroyed, Jamal’s escape was more successful than others’ thanks to his prior training and survival knowledge.
Our volunteers were surprised when Jamal said, “I didn’t lose anything,” while other disaster survivors sadly said that they had lost everything. Jamal explained that he felt this way because everything exists in his heart and remains in his memory, including his house, his furniture and his wife, who passed away one year ago.
After Tzu Chi volunteers talked to Jamal for a while, they felt inspired by his abundant life experiences. Even though he had tangibly lost everything, he went to the Disaster Recovery Center and received a cash card to maintain his life.
In life, there are many who appear ordinary, yet contain their own uniqueness. As Dharma Master Cheng Yen said, “The eternal Dharma-assembly at Vulture Peak can be found in every moment.”