After Shmuel Greenbaum’s wife was killed by a suicide bomber in a Jerusalem restaurant, he responded to his tragedy not with hatred and anger, but by teaching the world kindness through the personal stories of every day people. His two websites send kindness e-mails to thousands of subscribers directly and are reprinted in hundreds of publications, which reach millions of readers. 

Shmuel is fascinating audiences from Larnaca, Cyprus to London, England with a dynamic presentation. Rather than focusing on hatred and anger, Shmuel focuses on the positive. Through stories and audience participation, Shmuel plays up the emotions of the crowd and rivets his audience’s attention. Participants come away feeling very positive and excited about doing something great.

Audience Responses

This past summer, I had a family emergency. My cousin, who was only 23 years old and one of my best friends, was murdered in Israel. It was very hard for me because I was close to him and I have not seen him for four years when this happened. He was a very young guy, a very beautiful person, inside and out.

After the tragedy, I found myself not being the same anymore. I did not want to go out with friends or do anything. I found myself being more distant with people because I thought that I could not trust anyone after what happened to my cousin. I kept thinking about how people could be so cruel and selfish and just so inhuman and often wondered if there are many, if any, nice and wonderful people left in this world.

After listening to Mr. Greenbaum, I, first of all, was much moved and second of all, his story about kindness and his project about kindness and teaching it to others restored my thoughts. Thank you very much for having him come in. he was absolutely great. Definitely have him come back next semester if possible. 

 –Loyola University, Chicago, Illinois

You came to my high school, Wauwatosa West and I just wanted to say thanks for being inspiring! I was amazed at your personal strength in dealing with tragedy by having a positive impact, and I signed up for the weekly emails so I can (hopefully) go through life constructively, and spread kindness.

 Thanks again for coming!

 - Wauwatosa West High School, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin

Thirteen months ago, my mother was involved in a hit and run accident while crossing the street. Fortunately, my mom suffered only a bruise on her right leg. The first few minutes when I received the news, however, I was uncertain of the outcome. Therefore, I cursed God and the man who hit my mother, with enough rage to kill him if I received the chance.

Today, I could say that if a member of my family or if a close friend were to be murdered, I would seek revenge through violence or at least, displaced anger. I cannot fathom anyone else would think differently. A few days ago, Shmuel Greenbaum proved me wrong.

Mr. Greenbaum was a guest speaker whose wife was murdered by a suicide bomber. Instead of anger, he responded with kindness. His story truly produces astonishment for anyone who hears it..

Stuyvesant High School, New York, New York

> It is sad to look around and understand that so much of our world is defined by hate. As an idealist who has faith in the common person, this observation is especially affecting. But it is inspirational, if nothing else, to see that every so often there are people who try and fight this dreary system that we are born into. A movement such as the one Mr. Greenbaum advocates serves a reminder that we are at least capable, if unwilling, to do kindness.

I walked into Lecture Hall A today, expecting to attend the lecture given by Shmuel Greenbaum for one period. I ended up staying for four. What I saw today was stirring for a number of reasons, and was a great example of the type of intellectual discussion that our school can boast. I also found our guest speaker, Shmuel Greenbaum, to be captivating for several reasons.

Shmuel Greenbaum is an extraordinary human being. The tragedy that he was forced to endure is something that none of us should ever have to be exposed to. And to have to deal with the horrors of September the 11th, a mere 32 days later? Now that defines tragedy in a persons life.  

I don't think that many people exist who could respond to an experience like that with anything but hatred and rage. Greenbaum reacted, instead, with kindness. It is an act, that is equally beautiful as it is hopeful for the future.

Listening to that man speak, your heart lifts. Hearing of all the good that he has put into the world, in the wake of such a horrible catastrophe, you cannot help but adore him. If only more people could live their days out like this man, you think to yourself, if only everyone else could practice kindness in the way that Shmuel Greenbaum has, the world would truly be a better place. It is for this reason, that I deeply admire Mr. Greenbaum, and strongly feel that he is the most commendable person that we have observed thus‑far in this class.

When it comes down to it, there is no denying the fact that Shmuel Greenbaum is an amazing individual, who is truly dedicating his life to making the world a better place. It is so uplifting, so enlightening, so refreshing to hear someone like him talk ‑ to simply bubble over with excitement at the thought of doing good in the world. He is in his way, a role model to us all.

Let me say this. When his compassion campaign hits the New York Subways, I will be one of its most enthusiastic fans.

– Stuyvesant High School, New York, New York

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