An Open Heart: Practicing Compassion in Everyday Life by The Dalai Lama, Nicholas Vreeland

By The Dalai Lama, Nicholas Vreeland

Compassion-sympathy for the anguish of others and the will to loose them from it-is wrestled with in all religious traditions. but how does one truly develop into a compassionate individual? What are the mechanisms through which a egocentric center is reworked right into a beneficiant center? during this acclaimed bestseller, His Holiness the Dalai Lama writes easily and powerfully in regards to the daily Buddhist perform of compassion, supplying a transparent, sensible, inspiring creation to the Buddhist route to enlightenment.

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He did his best to protect his people and keep his aggressors at bay while also pursuing his studies and his practice of the Buddha’s path to salvation. In 1959, as the Chinese Communist forces prepared to bomb his summer palace, the twenty-five-year-old Dalai Lama fled his country. More than 100,000 Tibetans followed him. Living in India and throughout the world, they now devote themselves to an extraordinary nonviolent campaign for Tibetan freedom. From the Indian town of Dharamsala, nestled in the foothills of the Himalaya, His Holiness has established a democratic government to serve his people — those still in Tibet, the great number who live in Indian refugee settlements, and those in other countries.

There was a relevance to violence and war. However, today we are so interdependent that the concept of war has become outdated. When we face problems or disagreements today, we have to arrive at solutions through dialogue. Dialogue is the only appropriate method. One-sided victory is no longer relevant. We must work to resolve conflicts in a spirit of reconciliation and always keep in mind the interests of others. We cannot destroy our neighbors! We cannot ignore their interests! Doing so would ultimately cause us to suffer.

This technique is not in and of itself Buddhist. Just as musicians train their hands, athletes their reflexes and techniques, linguists their ear, scholars their perceptions, so we direct our minds and hearts. Familiarizing ourselves with the different aspects of our spiritual practice is therefore a form of meditation. Simply reading about them once is not of much benefit. If you are interested, it is helpful to contemplate the subjects mentioned, as we did in the previous chapter with the nonvirtuous action of senseless talk, and then research them more extensively to broaden your understanding.

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