I often listen to BBC news when I get a chance to do so, as their global focus offers an opportunity to become aware of what’s happening around the world. One of the themes that shows up constantly is how polarization and aggression seem to be in the forefront of so much human activity these days. It may always have been this way, but we now have access to knowing what’s going on in places we may never experience in person.
This current global situation brings to mind the importance of expressions of kindness, as well as a commitment to actively cultivate kindness in our everyday lives. Many of us remember the time when “random acts of kindness” was a subject that was often in the forefront of our awareness. For me, these acts of kindness not only benefit both the giver and the receiver, but they also benefit our collective human consciousness—that field of consciousness that contains everything that humans express and experience. We often talk about environmental pollution here in the physical world. It’s also helpful to remember that we are also in a collective psychic environment which is generated by our collective thoughts, feelings, beliefs, and responses. What we do individually immediately becomes part of this collective field.
For this week’s practice, I invite you to explore, perhaps more deeply than you have, your relationship with kindness.
- What do you think of it as a concept?
- How does it live as a dynamic principle and activity in your life?
- What kinds of acts of kindness are natural to you?
- Do you offer acknowledgement and appreciation for the acts of kindness that come your way from others?
These are but a few inquiries I invite you to make around your relationship with kindness, your beliefs about it, and the activities you engage that express kindness as part of your everyday experience. Notice what happens if, for this week, you make kindness an up-front quality in your awareness and actions.
As always, please remember to bring along curiosity as your constant companion and to pat gently on the head any judgments that may arise. Allowing them to move on through reinforces the awareness that they are just the next thing arising and flowing on by without your having to do anything with or about them. It’s actually a way to be kind to yourself by not having to do battle with thoughts you’d rather not have.