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With your entire being, keep blowing. Propel the flame of compassion, love, understanding, kindness, and forgiveness. Blow just a little harder still. Feel relief wash over you as the stress of carrying all of THAT for millennia washes away from your shoulders, your mind, your entire body. The weight of those mind-created concepts turned beliefs turned reality is stifling enough to have pinned humanity under it for aeons. Now your own deep reverberant cries begin.

The Power of God’s Love

From unfathomable depths—deeper than your chest or belly—emerges a wail that is echoed from the walls of the farthest reaches of eternity. You cry harder still with the relief that comes as you forgive yourself, and everyone else, for ever having believed the false notion of separateness, the false notion that the body is anything other than a HOLY TEMPLE within which all of your prayers are received.

All of them, without exception. This is the only fall from grace that ever occurred—the great forgetting of what IS. The great forgetting that heaven is here and now, that we are manifestations of the divine, inherent within us the same power that birthed the universe, that birthed the vast expanse of eternity within which we are privileged to do our life dance. We are that. It never has been, and never will be, any other way. The return pilgrimage begins here and now. Existence itself is cheering for us. As your warm salty tears fall to the earth with the relief of releasing that false notion of separateness, with self-forgiveness for ever having looked into the eyes of another and seen anything other than your own divinity peering back at you, you might fall to the earth on your knees.

You might hear her whispering. You might just place your palms on her exquisite aliveness one that is daily forgotten , your forehead to her Earth forehead, and listen as she pleads for a softer, gentler touch. All the while, never stop blowing on that fire of kindness, compassion, eternal love, understanding, and forgiveness. With my hand linked to yours in communion, I march into that raging fire and let any vestige of separateness consume itself. And should I ever forget again—for a moment or a year— please, please remind me.

Sharon Salzberg ~ Metta, the Practice of Loving Kindness

While it is a self-remembering, we cannot do this alone because we never were separate. May we develop the strength not to forget in the face of those who have not yet remembered. We are responsible for all of us. Now imagine that you are the one going through that suffering. Reflect on how much you would like that suffering to end.


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Reflect on how happy you would be if another human being desired your suffering to end, and acted upon it. With constant practice, that feeling can be grown and nurtured. Act of kindness practice. Imagine again the suffering of someone you know or met recently. Imagine again that you are that person, and are going through that suffering.

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Now imagine that another human being would like your suffering to end — perhaps your mother or another loved one. What would you like for that person to do to end your suffering?

Imagine that you do something to help ease the suffering, or end it completely. Once you get good at this stage, practice doing something small each day to help end the suffering of others, even in a tiny way. Even a smile, or a kind word, or doing an errand or chore, or just talking about a problem with another person. Practice doing something kind to help ease the suffering of others. When you are good at this, find a way to make it a daily practice, and eventually a throughout-the-day practice. Those who mistreat us practice.

The final stage in these compassion practices is to not only want to ease the suffering of those we love and meet, but even those who mistreat us. When we encounter someone who mistreats us, instead of acting in anger, withdraw. Later, when you are calm and more detached, reflect on that person who mistreated you. Try to imagine the background of that person. Try to imagine what that person was taught as a child. Try to imagine the day or week that person was going through, and what kind of bad things had happened to that person.

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Try to imagine the mood and state of mind that person was in — the suffering that person must have been going through to mistreat you that way. And understand that their action was not about you, but about what they were going through. Now think some more about the suffering of that poor person, and see if you can imagine trying to stop the suffering of that person.

Compassion and the Individual

And then reflect that if you mistreated someone, and they acted with kindness and compassion toward you, whether that would make you less likely to mistreat that person the next time, and more likely to be kind to that person. Once you have mastered this practice of reflection, try acting with compassion and understanding the next time a person treats you.

Do it in little doses, until you are good at it. Want to Read saving….

A Guide to Cultivating Compassion in Your Life, With 7 Practices

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  • Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Ocean of Compassion: A Guide to the Life of Universal Loving provides inspirational guidance for the cultivation of the essential virtues necessary to live a life whose purpose is to overcome our mistaken ways of acting and thinking and become a Buddha for the benefit of all.

    It explains how to cultivate this motivation, called Bodhichitta in Buddhism, and how to shape uni Ocean of Compassion: A Guide to the Life of Universal Loving provides inspirational guidance for the cultivation of the essential virtues necessary to live a life whose purpose is to overcome our mistaken ways of acting and thinking and become a Buddha for the benefit of all.

    It explains how to cultivate this motivation, called Bodhichitta in Buddhism, and how to shape universal loving into a truly transformational life through the practice of the virtues of generosity, patience, effort, moral discipline, concentration, and wisdom.