The Dalia Lama answered five questions at the turn of the century. As I reread this today I find it to be even more relevant than in 2000. We are at the end of the second decade of the 21st century and these words soothe me and inform my behavior.
The Dalai Lama was asked five questions.
1. How do we address the widening gap between rich and poor?
2. How do we protect the earth?
3. How do we educate our children?
4. How do we help Tibet and other oppressed countries and peoples of the world?
5. How do we bring spirituality (deep caring for one another) through all disciplines of life.
The Dalai Lama said all five questions fall under the last one. If we have true compassion in our hearts, our children will be educated wisely, we will care for the earth, those who “have not” will be cared for. He was asked, “Do you think loving on the planet is increasing or staying the same?” His response, “My experience leads me to believe that love is increasing.”
He shared a simple practice that will increase loving and compassion in the world. He asked everyone to share it with as many people as they can.
- Spend five minutes at the beginning of each day remembering we all want the same things (to be happy and be loved) and we are all connected to one another.
- Spend five minutes–breathing in–cherishing yourself, and breathing out–cherishing others. If you think about people you have difficulty cherishing, extend your cherishing to them anyway.
- During the day extend that attitude to everyone you meet. Practice cherishing each person you meet as well as your family. A simple smile can bring light to another.
- Continue this practice no matter what happens or what anyone does to you. These thoughts are very simple, inspiring and helpful. The practice of cherishing can be taken very deep if done wordlessly, allowing yourself to feel the love and appreciation that already exists in your heart.
May we all take time each day to cherish all the beauty that surrounds us and all the people that bring love and joy to our lives, including ourselves.