The Dalai Lama tells us “If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.” Compassion is the basic building block for a happy and healthy life. Without it we go through life with a fear of the world. We see others as out to get us. Any mistake made was an intentional shot at us or a blow to knock us down. We don’t see other as having good intentions. it is this thought that causes us to lash out, to hurt others before they can hurt us.
if we offer others compassion then we can see the world a basically good and caring. We can see others as not out to harm us but as people with problems and frustrations, just as we have. In this was we allow those around us to have bad days, to express anger, sorrow, or guilt without feeling attacked.
I have often found this to be very difficult to practice. Sure I know to be compassionate and see others for the good they have inside. I know this on a rational level, but not always on an outward level. I have been judgement of many people in my past. I have refused to show compassion for those around me. In this struggle I have allowed my anger and control to be my master.
In my journey to have healthy more productive relationships with those around me i have had to find the compassion within. It was always there, buried deep within. Hidden from the world to maintain the image of a strong, self-reliant man. I thought to be compassionate towards those most in need was a weakness. “If only they had more willpower or were more dedicated to themselves they would not need my compassion.” This is the thought that drove me.
I can now offer compassion. I know listen when someone needs an ear to vent, or a hand to hold through the hard times life can throw at us. I am more willing to offer up a kind word to the person down on their luck in a hard moment of their lives. I still have the judgmental voice come creeping in from time to time but i am now able to drown it out. I can see it as the angry control freak in me wanting the world to be they way i want it to be. This, of course, is not possible or rational. now I just let him finish his rant in my head then tell him he is wrong and this is the new me and he is compassionate!