Rediscover moments of compassion
Spiritual understanding is attained through the right life experiences and vice-versa. This virtuous cycle of self-discovery starts with a genuine intention to grow into the better version of ourselves. It is a conscious search for moments of presence and inside peace. Therefore let’s have a closer look at a short spiritual message about compassion which I found along my travels. I hope it will inspire you as it did for me and help your inner-self on its spiritual path.
“Whatever joy there is in this world
All comes from desiring others to be happy
And whatever suffering there is in this world
All comes from desiring myself to be happy
But what need is there to say much more?
The childish work for their own benefit.
This Buddhas work for the benefit of others.
Just look at the difference between them!
The practice of equalising oneself with others
is a holy and mystical practice.”
In this short message, Shantideva shares his wisdom about compassion. He tells us that everyone will get more out of giving to others than from receiving. By the simple act of giving, we force ourselves to put in the shoes of others. We dissolve our ego boundaries and promote a sense of unity with our neighbour. Our inner-self and outside perspective start to melt together. In return, we get a feeling of connection, that first involves us in safety and then provides an expansive feeling of joy. I am happy because you are happy. This positive attitude, also known as love towards the other or empathy, helps us to correct our emotional congestions or our emotional depletion. It will make we forget our fears, disappointments and cravings. We experience a moment of real inner-peace.
On the contrary, more we desire ourselves to be happy, more our suffering will proportionally grow. It’s like a never finishing competition, where we continually try to satisfy our demanding ego and its changing expectations. This mind game will seem like we are never getting to the final line, and that’s when negative thoughts and energies will start to haunt us. Happiness is an illusion of our ego that we start to feed since we are very young. Like a drug, we crave for its ups and suffer from its downs. Balance is what we should aim.
Shantideva ends up by telling us that the practice of compassion is a path towards spirituality, self-discovery and peace. Although the action of giving is simple, we so often forgot it in our routines, blinded by our complicated desired life. I believe the first step is to detach yourself from the unstoppable train of thinking and find moments of presence in our day-to-day. Then, we will feel able to create giving moments with our family, friends and even strangers.
Start easy and small, simply: smile away, maybe try to make someone laugh, share your sweets without thinking twice, especially listen without judging, and even better just give someone a compliment for no reason. Feel the outcome. Absorb the experience. If you understand, then aim bigger!