Category: Love and Compassion


Life on Repeat

It can sometimes feel like life is on repeat. We see the same lessons replaying in our life, sometimes with different people or slightly different circumstances. It all seems too familiar, like we’ve been there before, and perhaps we have. It’s easy to chalk it all up to coincidence or even some divine punishment, as if we were paying some penance for a long forgotten sin whose debt has long since been repaid.

We tell ourselves that we know, that we understand, and that we will be different the next time we are presented with a given set of circumstances. But, will we really be that different? Will we stop and remember all the times we’ve turned our backs? We like to tell ourselves we will, and perhaps God or the universe presents us with these opportunities, not as a test or punishment, but as a chance at self-redemption. Perhaps we are given these opportunities, not to gain God’s love, because that love as already been there, but to show ourselves that yes, we can be different. We can be compassionate. We can be understanding. We can show love. We can be our better selves. We can be these things and are these things at all times, no matter how we judge ourselves and others.

There are no perfect set of circumstances where the peace of the world will show itself. It’s up to us to make it happen. We make it happen in our daily lives, through our interactions with each other, through compassion and understanding, one moment at a time.


Sacrificial Love

There is no qualifier that can explain unconditional love. Some say love is sacrificial, that in order to love, one must sacrifice. To sacrifice however, suggests one must give something up, that one must balance one outcome over another outcome. If love is love, is it not so, regardless of outcome. If one must measure the money lost, or the time given as a means of love, then perhaps it was not a love given freely. Love without bounds, knows no sacrifice too great or too little. It knows no time, and has no constraints. It is given freely and accepted freely.


The Sick

Mother TeresaThe sick are not a burden upon us, but a reminder of our humanity. They remind us of compassion, a compassion that is often lost in a world of billions of individuals but seemingly disconnected individuals. Trapped in our own sense of self, it is often easier for us to disconnect, to wash our hands of others and the world around us.

We seek an escape. We do it through our work, television and through the many mindless distractions that fill our lives. And yet none of those things brings us back to a grounded reality in who we really are as people. In a world of many distractions, it is easy to isolate our emotions and even our spirit from the things that truly matter to us. If not for ourselves, we must take notice at those around us. Let us take notice of our family, our friends and even the strangers who come through our lives.

Suffering is all about us, and many do it alone. There are many brave faces, and many more aching hearts. Through compassion. Through loving comfort, through prayer, and even through a smile, the burdens that seem unbearable become feathers on our backs.


Love is Like an Acorn

Acorns on the GroundLove is like an acorn. Many acorns drop to the ground from high up above. Some are buried. Some are taken by squirrels and other critters as sustenance. Others still fall onto infertile soil.

Every once in a while a great fire comes and ravages the entire forest. Nothing is quite the same. Charred tree tops and a blackened expanse are left in its wake. There is devastation. But under all that smoldering, and in the midst of all that seems hopeless, what was destructive has actually brought life and rejuvenation.

The fire in all its destruction has allowed some acorns to crack open and for seeds to be planted. And from these seeds, mighty oaks will grow. Into the sky like majestic reminders, they breathe life, and restore the beauty that was always there, the beauty that was never lost.


Rescue Helicopter

Rescue HelicopterToday I saw a fire rescue helicopter land from my office. When the rotors stopped and the wind stopped blowing, nurses came with a gurney to transfer a patient from the helicopter to the hospital. It was only a few yards. The person who came out was a mere four feet, if that, accompanied by what could only be the child’s mother.

What struck me more than the sight of the child and the thought of what might have happened to him, was the sight of the pilot. As everything came to a calm, and all who was left on the helipad was the pilot, there was an awareness, an awareness of the graveness of the situation. The pilot did a quick inspection of the helicopter, simply walking around it and giving it a once over, but his eyes told more.

It was not that it was routine, as I’m sure it was, but his stare was dead. A dead stare into the barely visible downtown skyline said it all. None of what was in front of him mattered. A mother, shell shocked, or perhaps just being strong for her child, was stone faced, and nurses who probably see more in a single day than most can handle, kept the child and mother calm. The gravity of life weighed on him. Only a few feet from the edge, his hands firmly in his pockets, he has not moved. Life goes on on the streets below him. Cars scurry about. People’s lives continue. All of it is masked by the smog that fills the air. None of it seems to matter.


Life’s Too Short

Whether you believe there is a life after this life or not, the fact that this life is short is a certainty. In fact some use this as their mantra for all that they do in this life. “This life is short, so why not?,” or “Life’s too short, so let’s do…” Fill in the blank. No one denies that we should not let the worries of this life weigh us down, but the fact that life is short is not an excuse to not care.

It is not an excuse to harm, disparage or walk over others. It is not a license to run life rough shot over the lives of others. We affect each other. Whether we are family or strangers to each other, or whether we are separated by oceans, borders or even by generations, the things we do affect each other. Reality is not all that we see and it is certainly more than we often choose to see.

These things may not make a person care any more than perhaps they should, but it should make one question. What am I running from? What am I hiding? Why do I fear? There is no rush to death. There is no rush to happiness. There is no rush to love for you are already there. You have never left. Stop hiding. Stop running. Stop fearing. Life’s too short.


Rise Up!

Man would hijack the name of God and claim it as their own. God/Allah is called by many names and yet He has no name. To call on God is not to utter a sound with one’s mouth, but to speak from a loving and just heart.

None of man’s laws can ever prevent one from seeking and accepting God’s love, for His love can never be shackled. His love can never be bound whether by leather bindings or man’s laws.

Do not descend into the fear others have made for themselves. Rise up. Rise up!


Practice Giving

Giving HandPractice giving. Practice it not for the one who receives but practice it for yourself. Giving is not only an exercise of expressing kindness, but also of humility and trust.

In giving we must learn to trust the intent of those who seek help and even of those who would deny it. The path for all of us is different so in giving do not judge the choices of another. Do not judge the clothes one wears, or the conditions with which one lives. Judge not one’s behaviors, but remember them as you. See the humanity in all even if some choose not to see it in themselves.

In giving we must trust our heart that we are led on a path of betterment of not only the recipient, but of ourselves. We are the saviors of no one but ourselves. See yourself not as one’s savior but one’s companion for we are all discovering what it means to live, together.

Most of all, we must learn to trust that as long as we follow our heart that we will always be provided for and nourished. When the heart and soul are nourished, all worries fall aside. The world becomes a smaller place and the worries foremost in our minds become like specks of dust in the night sky. Nothing seems as important as it once was.

Practice giving and remember who you are and meant to be.


Indefensible or Away From the People

RiskGuarding your heart is a lot like defending a capital, or a strategic city in a game of Civilization or Risk.

In those two games, there are typically two approaches. One involves choosing your boundaries such that there are large walls and as few neighbors as possible such that one can minimize the number of enemies or threats that are on their immediate border. Another strategy in similar games is again to minimize your boundaries, build moats and live high atop in towers or on platforms so as to minimize others’ abilities to reach you.

Although these strategies might fare well for games, it’s not always well suited for life. Isolation often breeds contempt. It prevents us from being able to understand others. We see life as we wish to see it, but we must also allow others that same opportunity. Yes, it might seem easier to live in isolation, without having to worry about other’s choices, but then what would life be? We can live for ourselves. We can live for God or some higher power, but does that not mean living for all of creation, even if we don’t always understand it?

The beauty of conflict is that it shows us who we are when things get rough. It shows us what we are willing to put up with or hide away. It’s a catalyst for getting us on the right path, whatever path that may be for each individual.

So yes, guard your heart, but allow it to be open enough that when love or kindness comes your way, you are able to accept it without question. Allow yourself to be blessed.


How to Keep a Smile

Expect nothing of others, let alone oneself. Each person, each creature is an individual with their own needs and desires. What may seemingly be right for one may not be right for all, or even for ourselves in another moment in time.

Take each moment as it comes and treat every experience as a new one. Treat each interaction, whether it is with a stranger, someone you love or even with someone with whom you do not normally get along, as if it were the first interaction. Do not become a stranger but rather walk with an open mind and heart that you may always walk away with God’s or the universe’s best intentions realized.

Do not condemn before giving life and others a chance. Do not walk in blindness. Open the eyes of your soul that you may see the light of life in every being and in all that you do.

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