“My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.” ― Dalai Lama XIV
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It’s no surprise wicked acts have a greater impression on us than acts of kindness. We are alerted to fear more than goodness.
Psychologists believe we are wired to detect that which threatens our survival and happiness. We give attention to acts of cruelty in the news because it is perceived as a threat to our survival.
In these times of disingenuous social media interactions, unkindness abounds as people hide behind screens.
This does not make it appropriate to abuse others. There is a person on the other side of the screen with feelings we must take into account.
An important lesson in kindness involves asking yourself: ‘How would I handle being the recipient of this?’ If it doesn’t feel good avoid the behaviour.
“Hurt is hurt, and every time we honour our own struggle and the struggles of others by responding with empathy and compassion, the healing that results affects all of us,” avows author and social researcher Brené Brown in Rising Strong.
I wish to leave you with a passage from Mother Teresa’s poem titled Anyway, in which she states: “People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centred; forgive them anyway. If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; be kind anyway.”
Incorporate the smallest acts of kindness into your everyday life and notice the ripple effects. The Butterfly Effect in Chaos Theory asserts that a tiny event in one region of the globe can have a substantial effect somewhere else.
Armed with this knowledge, it is the Dalai Lama who reminds us that if you can’t be kind, avoid harming others