Day 14 of my 21-day meditation experience. Today I dove into “Gratitude brings Compassion.” This is what I learned: Compassion is supposed to link us together through our humanness. We as humans are more alike than we are different. And yet, from what I see in the world, we humans can’t seem to get along or see eye to eye. Judgment will deny us the connection that ties us together. Persons who practice compassion become a conduit for peace and understanding. Hearts soften and miracles can happen. I am learning to have more compassion for humans. I feel they are tainted from a very young age. Parents influence judgment by telling children what to believe and how to think. I know that is why I am drawn to animals. Animals are so connected to nature that they don’t judge us.
It is taught that gratitude and compassion are linked. The warm feeling of kindness in our hearts is compassion. For me, sometimes compassion feels impossible towards people. My judgment against those who have wronged me sets in and the desire to be right and validate my feelings takes over. I know this creates separation, but sometimes I can’t help how I feel. I am learning that gratitude is the opposite of judgment and one cannot judge and have compassion at the same time. At times, I feel the need to help and not condemn. However, my bruised ego takes over and I feel that the person who hurt me does not deserve my compassion.
Forgiveness is the next step and I find it very much emotionally depleting—especially when I have to do my forgiveness practice over and over for the same person. Even though I know forgiveness loosens the grip of resentment and grudges, it is still a work in progress for me. When I do find forgiveness, I know my awareness becomes all-encompassing. Forgiveness expands beyond me, myself, and I. Forgiveness allows compassion to open up to an empathetic common ground with humanity. In order to purify my soul, I can only offer this without pride or self-regard. When I stop judging others, that is when I can stop judging myself. Once I get to that place, I will be in a state of grace. Getting there is the hard part ...
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