> Quotes > Compassion
What our society today needs more than anything is the spirit of empathy—the ability to put ourselves in the shoes of those who are facing hardship and suffering, to understand and share what they are going through. When the spirit of compassion becomes the bedrock of society, and is embodied by society’s leaders, the future will be bright with hope.
The fact is, when we support others, we ourselves are actually being supported; when we help others, we ourselves are actually being helped. This is the worldview of “dependent origination” taught in Buddhism.
When we reach out to help and support someone suffering in our immediate environment, we are taking a concrete step toward solving society’s larger problems. And by doing so, our own dreams and path forward will come into focus. Above all, we gain confidence and resolve.
When we care for others our own strength to live increases. When we help people expand their state of life, our lives also expand. Actions to benefit others are not separate from actions to benefit oneself. Our lives and the lives of others are ultimately inseparable.
An attitude of compassion does not mean looking down on someone, pitying them in their misery. Compassion is based on respect. We discuss life as equals, learn from each other and strive together to improve our lives.
Our true selves shine and the inherent strength of our lives wells forth when we exert ourselves for others. This is human nature. And this is the way of life Buddhism teaches.
Altruism is the most effective means of self-realization and self-perfection. Doing good for others is the best way to develop one’s own character and find greater happiness for oneself.
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Stories of Hope by Daisaku Ikeda
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Stories of Hope
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