September 19

Reflection

We can reject everything else: religion, ideology, all received wisdom. But we cannot escape the necessity of love and compassion.  This, then, is my true religion, my simple faith. In this sense, there is no need for temple or church, for mosque or synagogue, no need for complicated philosophy, doctrine or dogma. Our own heart, our own mind, is the temple.The doctrine is compassion. Love for others and respect for their rights and dignity, no matter who or what they are: ultimately these are all we need. So long as we practice these in our daily lives, then no matter if we are learned or unlearned, whether we believe in Buddha or God, or follow some other religion or none at all, as long as we have compassion for others and conduct ourselves with restraint out of a sense of responsibility, there is no doubt we will be happy.”
Dalai Lama XIV

Prayer

Nothing is so strong as gentleness. Nothing is so gentle as real strength.
St. Francis de Sales

Action

In your encounters with other people remember that each of us sometimes needs to be given a little slack. Try to develop this attitude.

Suggested Reading

Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.
Matthew 18:21

If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over.
Matthew 18:15

God’s dream is that you and I and all of us will realize that we are family, that we are made for togetherness, for goodness, and for compassion.
Desmond Tutu

Grief can be the garden of compassion. If you keep your heart open through everything, your pain can become your greatest ally in your life’s search for love and wisdom.
Rumi 

If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men.
Francis of Assisi

We can learn the art of fierce compassion – redefining strength, deconstructing isolation and renewing a sense of community, practicing letting go of rigid us-vs.-them thinking – while cultivating power and clarity in response to difficult situations.
Sharon Salzberg

A religious man is a person who holds God and man in one thought at one time, at all times, who suffers harm done to others, whose greatest passion is compassion, whose greatest strength is love and defiance of despair.
Abraham J. Heschel

Make no judgments where you have no compassion.
 Anne McCaffrey

The value of compassion cannot be over-emphasized. Anyone can criticize. It takes a true believer to be compassionate. No greater burden can be borne by an individual than to know no one cares or understands.
Arthur H. Stainback

It is lack of love for ourselves that inhibits our compassion toward others. If we make friends with ourselves, then there is no obstacle to opening our hearts and minds to others.
Dalai Lama

Compassion is a two way street.
Frank Capra

 

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