Many times in our lives we have had someone say or do something that was cruel and unkind. Some of my best teachers have been unkind people who have helped me feel the pain that can be caused by thoughtless words and actions. They have also helped me see that part of myself that can sometimes be unkind. If you notice and spend some time observing those around you whom you might feel embody loving-kindness you will notice that when they speak their words reflect that.
In the East, loving-kindness is considered a spiritual practice, part of what becomes a person’s deep character. How can we move more closely toward building a consciousness of loving-kindness? Repeat this mantra to yourself: “Everywhere I look, I see the face of God.” When we begin to see the divinity within every individual, how could we not treat that person with respect and loving-kindness? Is this easy to do? Of course not, especially when we realize that those we tend to unconsciously treat unkindly (or who treat us unkindly) may be those closest to us. They often serve as a mirror, refelcting back to us some aspect of our own character that needs to be more fully loved. That is why the Dalai Lama called kindness his religion…it takes discipline and commitment to practice. Start a new religion for yourself today. Be kind to yourself and others – it could catch on!
Today in your writing take note of people who have been unkind to you in your past. What can you learn from that? Take a deeper step and look at ways where you have been unkind. What can you learn from that? This week try hard to see the divinity in those around you and treat them with loving-kindness. Realize that by treating everyone else with kindness, you are really being kind to you.