A Meditation on Compassion from the Dalai Lama

 

The following is an excerpt I took from “The Art of Happiness.” It is a meditation on compassion taught by the Dalai Lama. The intent being to feel for another and establish a genuine bond with another soul in anguish. Through building compassion with others we create a more peaceful and joyous world. 

 “In generating compassion, you start by recognizing that you do not want suffering and that you have a right to have happiness. This can be verified or validated by your own experience. You then recognize that other people, just like yourself, also do not want to suffer and that they have a right to have happiness. So this becomes the basis of your beginning to generate compassion.

“Begin by visualizing a person who is acutely suffering, someone who is in pain or is in a very unfortunate situation. For the first three minutes of the meditation, reflect on that individual’s suffering in a more analytic way—think about their intense suffering and the unfortunate state of that person’s existence. After thinking about that person’s suffering for a few minutes, next, try to relate that to yourself, thinking, ‘that individual has the same capacity for experiencing pain, joy, happiness, and suffering that I do.’ Then, try to allow your natural response to arise—a natural feeling of compassion towards that person. Try to arrive at a conclusion: thinking how strongly you wish for that person to be free from that suffering. And resolve that you will help that person to be relieved from their suffering. Finally, place your mind single-pointedly on that kind of conclusion or resolution, and for the last few minutes of the meditation try to simply generate your mind in a compassionate or loving state.”

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