A meditation for fostering compassion, from Thupten Jinpa.
As you contemplate the various ways in which you are the beneficiary of contributions from so many people, including countless strangers, acknowledge that it’s the presence of others that makes it possible for you to live, it’s their presence that gives meaning to your existence, and it’s their deeds that contribute toward your welfare.
Now allow your heart to open so that a sense of appreciation and gratitude may begin to arise in you. Abide in this state, and whatever positive thoughts and feelings you happen to experience, let them permeate your entire being.
Next contemplate this thought: “Just as I feel happy when others wish me well, and feel touched when others show concern for my pain and sorrow, so everyone else feels the same way. Therefore I shall rejoice in others’ happiness and feel concerned for their pain and sorrow.”
Once again, recalling your profound recognition that others aspire to happiness and shun suffering the same way you do, open your heart to rejoicing in others’ happiness and connecting with their pain.
Now—having brought to your mind the fundamental recognition that, just like you, all others aspire to happiness and wish to avoid suffering, as well as having reflected on the deeply interconnected nature of yourself and others—let your heart become permeated by the sense of connection with others.
From A Fearless Heart: How the Courage to Be Compassionate Can Transform Our Lives, by Thupten Jinpa, PhD, with permission from Hudson Street Press.