Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Is compassion the tight rope or the safety net?

A truly compassionate attitude toward others does not change even if they behave negatively or hurt you. (Dalai Lama)

Tonight I meditated with the Bare Bones group and while I strive to let the thoughts come and go, I did snag one and put it in the basket for this blog post. 

It is simply this: A present awareness can give rise to gratitude and a present awareness can give rise to sharing it. 

I remember first approaching Buddhism as a typical Westerner, casting aside any artifacts of the supernatural. For me, the present moment is the most supernatural thing I have ever encountered. Compared to when I first started practicing three years ago, I am often astonished as to what having the present moment as a true home has to offer. 

Being present and compassionate was like walking a tight rope. Now the present is my safety net. It is a place to return to when I am projecting into the future or ruminating on the past. Being able to be grateful is, in and of itself, a gift. From the seat of this gift the things that once hardened me have made me softer and more gentile. 

I still need practice. 

What about you? Is compassion a discipline?

Peace In Every Step
Sean Flanigan
Charlotte, NC

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