For more compassion in everyday life
Updated: Apr 24, 2021
This morning I was listening to a guided meditation that reminded me of a situation in India…
I was at the meditation centre “Tushita” in Dharamsala (North India) for their 10-day Introduction to Buddhism course. All of the 108 participants sat together in the large hall (called Gompa) in meditation. I don´t recall the topic we were meditating on, I only remember that I was crying. When the meditation was over, I opened my eyes and saw that the girl sitting next to me, had left me a handkerchief. Outside our paths crossed and she gave me the warmest and most loving hug, that I had received in a long time.
Bear in mind, we didn’t know each other; we had only been allowed to talk briefly at the beginning of the course – and then obeyed the precept of noble silence for the duration of the course.
I was moved: So much honest and pure love from a stranger.
Based on my own experience, places and courses like this one bring about so much love and compassion for and from others. Whenever I take part in a similar course (be it yoga or meditation), I feel so much more connected with my fellow human beings – my heart is wide open.
Taking this openness and sensitivity with me, back into everyday life, back into the daily routine, seems to be the true challenge. Back in “normal” everyday life with the “normal” responsibilities, it seems so much harder to preserve this newly won capacity for unlimited compassion – towards friends and also strangers.
I find guided meditations (especially from the Buddhist tradition), working on topics like compassion and loving-kindness (also called Metta Meditation), very useful. I like the ones from Tara Brach in particular. You can find these and others on YouTube or on the free meditation app Insight-Timer.
Another option is, to deliberately recall situations, where oneself experienced unconditional love or gave unconditional love to others; relive the feelings of warmth and take them into the present moment.
For more compassion in everyday life.