Giving: Tis the Season

Giving: Tis the Season

All it takes is one moment to change you forever.

This is Narayanan Krishnan’s story.  Narayanan Krishnan, is an award winning chef who was headed to Switzerland to work in a 5-star restaurant. On a quick visit home to say good by to his parents he saw a very old man under a bridge eating his own human waste for food.  He was shocked into silence and he asked himself…

What is the purpose of my life?

This life transforming question changed the course of his life; he began feeding this man, and today, he get’s up at 4AM every day…rain or shine…no holiday’s…and feeds the mentally ill, homeless, destitute, and elderly who are abandoned by their families and often abused, three meals a day, every day.  The hot meals he delivers are simple, tasty vegetarian fare he personally prepares, packs and often hand-feeds to nearly 400 clients daily.  Krishnan also carries a comb, scissors and razor and is trained in eight haircut styles that, along with a fresh shave, provide extra dignity to those he serves.  Simply stated, he cares.

He sleeps in Akshaya’s modest kitchen with his few co-workers. Since investing his entire savings of $2,500 in early 2002, he has taken no salary and subsists with the help of his once-unsupportive parents. In June of 2002 he created the non-profit Akshaya’s Helping in H.E.L.P. Trust to support his cause and to help reach a greater number of people.  The word Akshaya is Sanskrit and means “undecaying” or “imperishable,” and was chosen “to signify that human compassion should never decay or perish”.  Expanding the visibility to a much larger audience, in 2010, Akshaya U.S.A. was founded to help support Akshaya’s Helping in H.E.L.P. Trust, as well as other similar organizations.

This year he was voted as one of 2010’s top ten hero’s for CNN’s Unsung Heros award.  Well deserved, wouldn’t you say?  By the way, the other nine are also very inspiring…Personally, I find people who are selfless givers both beautiful and inspiring.

We are all human with the same basic necessities, so imagine if these people lived on your street. Don’t wait until tomorrow, when you can make a difference TODAY!

Here in America we are a remarkably charitable people.  No other country approaches Americans who give the most money to help the needy and others, either through time, public donations, or private donations.

So, in the spirit of Christmas, what can you do to start a year around habit to help people in your community?  Giving is a Little Bit of Beauty™ for sure!

The CNN Heroes program will be re-telecast on Christmas Day.

One of our deepest cravings is to be recognized and encouraged. When you encourage others, you lift their spirits, enhance their self-confidence and add fuel to their motivational fire. Perhaps more than anything you give them hope and inspiration. Will you commit to being intentional about encouraging others this holiday season? -via ‘Little Things Matter’




  1. Debbie Goldberg 5 years ago

    Irene – Wow. He is an amazing man. Thank you for sharing his store. Very inspiring and thought provoking at this time of year.


  2. Donna McCord 5 years ago

    An amazing and inspirational example of what we are all called to be. I hope that many who see this man in action will also be inspired. What he does is not easy and even more difficult for those of us who live in such abundance as we do in this country. I would love to believe I could be that selfless, but honestly don’t know if I could sacrifice everything the way he has done. It is very humbling. Thank you for posting this and sharing.

  3. Julie Labes 5 years ago

    I had already seen this video…can’t remember where But thanks fir reminding us that we can all try to be better

  4. Robbie Schlosser 5 years ago

    Hi Irene,
    Thanks for this powerful story! We’ll probably hear quite a few similar stories during this holiday time of giving. We can hope that little by little they’ll encourage people to pause in our all too busy schedule of getting things done, and wonder about what things are most worthwhile doing in the first place. This story is good inspiration for deciding to fight “the good fight”.

  5. Awesome. God speaks to and through us in so many ways. Yes, there is much suffering in this world, the answer is charity and humility. Thank you so much for sharing Narayanan’s story.

  6. Jennifer Duchene 5 years ago

    Love this story and this man, for what he embodies is the true energy of joy. This is not a sacrifice for Narayanan, it is life he embraces with his spirit and his soul. I hope that a little bit of his beauty will sprinkle all over the world, so that we all may be blessed enough, to encounter a moment of sheer awe, belief & dignity with our fellow man.

    Jennifer Duchene
    Home Makeover Mixtress

  7. Beautiful story. Would that we could have the courage, drive, and trust that this man has. Thank you for writing this. I had heard a bit of the CNN story but hadn’t followed.

    Judy Stone-Goldman
    The Reflective Writer

  8. Sherri Lynn Wood 5 years ago

    Wow this brought tears to my eyes. So few care for the homeless and mentally ill. What a calling.

  9. Pat Zahn 5 years ago

    Oh my gosh, Irene, I’m balling like a baby. What a beautiful beautiful man…my normally verbose self is speechless.

    Pat Zahn

  10. I posted this on my page a couple of weeks ago but it hasn’t lost its power no matter how many times I see it.

    I totally agree with Jennifer that I don’t think he thinks anything is a sacrifice. He is doing what he believes in. Unlike most of us, we may believe in something but never take the action like he has taken action. I’m not sure I could ever believe in anything with the intensity like he does enough to do what he does. But I guess we never know until it happens.

    Thanks for sharing Irene.

    Candace Davenport ~ Little Books with a Big Message

  11. Darcie Newton 5 years ago

    I am so inspired by individuals like Narayanan. If we all agree that our biggest gift is to give and focus on finding our unique way to give, the world must improve. Thank you for sharing this inspirational story.

    Retire with Real Estate

  12. Fiona Stolze 5 years ago

    Thanks for sharing this. I was really inspired by him stopping and listening to his calling and taking action on it. That is what gives his life meaning. And he certainly adds value to others’ lives. What a story.

    Fiona Stolze

  13. Louise Edington 5 years ago

    Wow! I am truly moved to tears. Very inspirational. He really is a hero. Can’s say any more.
    Louise Edington
    Facing Fears and Frontiers Over Fifty

  14. Lisa Vitale 5 years ago

    This man is my hero, I’ve seen his video before and was brought to tears by his immense compassion. Very few people in this world could do what he has done.

    What a wonderful thought to share this on your blog and bring to the attention of others, especially this time of year. Thank you.

    Lisa Vitale

  15. Very inspirational, great to see people that still “care” about others.

  16. Bruce Barone 5 years ago

    It IS an amazing story.

    I saw him on the CNN special.

    The story brought tears to my eyes.

    I asked myself then what can I do to make the world, my community, a better place.

    I am going to make a change. Make a difference.

    Thank You, Dear Irene, for this story.

    With Love,

  17. Lisa Ann Landry 5 years ago

    What a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing.

    Lisa Ann Landry
    Vibrating Positive Energy to Unleash the Genie in All

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