Compassion - My Lesson for The Day

 

Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive." Dalai Lama

In our household, we have a set of angel cards. Each has a one-word spiritual attribute printed on it. My soul mate, Phil, and I take turns selecting a card in the morning before starting our day. We pay attention and see how the message may express itself in our day.

One morning I chose one at random: “Compassion.” On that day, I was in a hurry. I needed to pick up an item at a department store, so I took a comfortable twenty-minute bus ride into town. I enjoyed the scenery of our semi-rural town, the warmth of the female bus driver and the coziness of pleasant weather.

On the way back, after getting out of the store in less than fifteen minutes, I was met with a challenge. This time the bus driver was a cranky, older man who I happened to notice had a hearing disability. The ride was bumpy and scary. Besides driving faster than he should have, he took out a piece of gum and unwrapped it slowly, both his hands lifted from the steering wheel. He then aimed the wrap at the garbage can next to the door and grumbled because he missed. I remembered once before when I had the same unpleasant experience with his driving and his demeanor. As we neared my stop I pulled the bell cord, he but he didn’t hear it, so I missed my stop. When he saw me get up he asked, “You get off here?” Calmly I replied, “Yes.” I didn’t say anything about my missed stop and, instead, simply wished him a good day.



Walking back home, I engaged in negative mental chatter: “This man really shouldn’t be driving! An accident could have happened! He needs an attitude makeover.” Then I remembered the word on the angel card. I also have a hearing disability, though I hoped I came off as more pleasant than this gentleman. The minute I felt compassion, not pity, I came to an understanding that in the journey of life we all are doing the best we can. Having a handicap makes that even more difficult. My heart opened and my mind relaxed instantly. I don’t think this is empathy. I would have come to the same understanding even if he didn’t have a hearing challenge. What a shift! I could once again enjoy the soft breeze and the clear blue skies.

Webster’s dictionary defines compassion as “Sympathetic consciousness of others' distress together with a desire to alleviate it.” Compassion is expressed in different forms: attitude, service, and action. When we reach out to help someone in need, even if it is to lend a friendly shoulder to lean on, we are alleviating suffering. When we keep our mind still without falling into judgment, we are also being compassionate.

I have an open heart, so it’s not difficult for me to live a life of compassion. But the lesson I learned that day was about compassionate understanding of a higher order. In my life, I have been the recipient of different forms of compassion, and for that I’m grateful. The mind is generally busy judging and over-dramatizing as I did that day on the bus. This is what creates separation, whereas the heart simply knows and acts accordingly, often without fear.

In life we need to have love and compassion not only for the world, but also for ourselves and have understanding for one another. This unconditional understanding is not of the mind but of the heart. It is an acceptance that we are all part of the human condition and the illusion of life. No matter who we are or where we are, the attributes of love – one of which is compassion – are what truly matter in the end.



"Beyond Inspiration" excerpt. Available in Amazon.com

A compilation of musings, affirmative prayers and affirmations that are spiritual but without dogma. It's a handy book to use daily to awaken the sacred within you. Readers have commented that the words soothes, inspires and encourages them to introspect.

@Copyright “Beyond Inspiration" 2012



Seeds of Compassion

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Comments 68 comments

ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Hi Marie, I always loved reading your life experiences and the lessons learned! This brings me to a feeling good place again and again. Hugs and blessings. :)


alekhouse profile image

alekhouse 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

I love this hub. It has reminded me to stop and think about being more compassionate. I frequently say to myself "we are all in this together" "this" of course refers to life. If we can be a little more compassionate towards each other, that life becomes even more meaningful and enjoyable.

This hub says a lot about you, Marie. I wish I had the chance to meet and get to know you outside of our virtual space. I know you would bring joy and insight into my life.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago

Hey Marie , Did someone stack that deck of cards, :-] any one that knows you Marie ,knows that you ARE the definition of compassion . I can't immagine you any other way. Very nice advice for others.


Enlydia Listener profile image

Enlydia Listener 5 years ago from trailer in the country

Beautiful practice...it is good to have a method to remind you of "love".


De Greek profile image

De Greek 5 years ago from UK

How perfectly the Dalai Lama expressed it! One canhardly dobetter than that, can one? Thank you for this, Marie, you have made my day :-)


Fossillady profile image

Fossillady 5 years ago from Saugatuck Michigan

Lovely story about compassion and how you applied it to the situation with the bus drive...the Dalai Lama is a truly sweet soul...Thank you for sharing this...


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Hi Michelle, You also have brought me into a good place with your articles and Youtubes, so appreciate your comments. :) Was thinking of you this morning, by the way, regarding your aunt. Peaceful intentions were sent your way.

Ooh,thank you Nancy. It would be cool if some of us lived nearby. Wish I could insert a heart smiley as we do in Facebook, your words mean a lot! And, yes, we are all in this together. I like to remind myself in our path we will meet the diversity that we have in humanity, and some are suffering within.

Ahorseback, Thanks my friend for your continuing kindness!

Hi Enlydia, Yes, having a focus that pulls us back into a higher state is good to have. Nice meeting you! :)

De Greek, Glad you enjoyed the message of the hub. :)

Fossillady, The Dalai Lama is one of my favorite teachers, I enjoy his simplicity and open heart. I was thinking this morning that in this planet we are blessed to have had and still have amazing loving and a few self realized teachers.


Jackwms profile image

Jackwms 5 years ago

I am 75 years old and very hard of hearing. I live in Lacey Washington. Your story about the bus driver, and the Dalai Lama analogy really hit a chord. I took the liberty of posting your hub on my Facebook page. I hope you don't mind. I was just talking with my son yesterday about compassion, which I think is one of his most admirable qualities. Great hub


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Jackwms, Its an honor that you posted it in Facebook, thank you! :) The more compassion we all have, the better for our little planet.


ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Hi Marie, many tears were shed and yet once again lessons were learned. Something happened inside me when I was in the funeral mass in church. I am okay and moving forward with a skip in my step. Thanks for thinking of me. Your prayers are much appreciated. :)


neeleshkulkarni profile image

neeleshkulkarni 5 years ago from new delhi

the point about having compassion for oneself as well stuck a chord Marie.most often we have to little love and compassion for our own selves and therefore also get into all these negative spirals.

thank you ohh teacher shall imbibe!!!.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Michelle, have little chills as I can understand how the death of a loved creates sometimes powerful changes, if we allow it. Love you spiritual sister. Hugs~

Neeleshkulkarni, Yes, we need to be gentle with ourselves. Thanks for stopping by to comment! :)


Feline Prophet profile image

Feline Prophet 5 years ago from India

May your well of compassion never dry up, Marie! :)


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

FP, I will toast to your comment :::::raising a cup of tea which I am drinking now::::: :)


Dottie1 profile image

Dottie1 5 years ago from MA, USA

From my daily devotion I quote 'True compassion is love in action'. As stated in this hub, compassion can also be expressed at other levels such as in attitude.

I love the idea Marie, of paying attention to how your message is expressed in your day and the lesson learned of 'compassionate understanding'. Excellent!


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Hi Dottie, Thanks for stopping by and adding your thoughts, it is indeed true, that true compassion is love in action. Today we recieved the message of "purpose". :)

By the way, have you watched "Secret Millionare" on Sundays? It's inspiring seeing the compassion/love in action from the millionares who go undercover in the poorest of neighborhoods, to share their wealth by finding worthy causes and people to help. Hugs~


Dottie1 profile image

Dottie1 5 years ago from MA, USA

So it's the message of purpose today, huh! What a great spiritual exercise as you go about seeking its expression! These messages would also make for good exercises on fb's beyond inspiration! Just a thought that came to mind, lol!

Don't think we have that show 'Secret Millionaire' on the east coast but will check it out because it definitely sounds interesting! On Michelle's hub 'If I had a million dollars' I commented that if I had a million dollars I would anonymously do similar acts of kindness as the people in this show. Thanks for sharing!


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Dottie, Hey, good idea, will do this in Beyond Inspirations! You should have the show in the East Coast, its not a local program. I know you will love it, its a tear jerker but in a good way. :)


Dottie1 profile image

Dottie1 5 years ago from MA, USA

Marie, I found it via Google. It shows on Sunday here too! Just watched a sneak preview on YouTube. Will be watching and will be sure to have plenty of tissues!:)


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Great, Dottie! I am chuckling at the visuals of you with a box of tissues! :)


Denise Handlon profile image

Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

Marie, this is a beautiful reminder of how the heart opens with compassion. I have been wondering how you have been-haven't seen much from you, but I am thrilled to see that your partner has a place here as well, and will follow him.

You have written a wonderful example of how the fear triggers a reaction of constriction, blame and negativity, and then,m so beautifully, spirit allowed for the nudging of rememberance-a desire to do things differently-respond, not react.

I love the idea of the Angel cards, and I work with a set of angel messages daily as well. They were made by one of my teachers when I was training for my therapeutic energy work.

It is a wonderful way to start the morning.

Have a blessed week, Marie. Nice touching base with you again.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Hi Denise, I find that with all that pulls us in different directions in our daily life, in my case our business which is really a 7 day job, which often finds me packing orders in the a.m, as we handle an online business as my s/o works in remodeling during the day, its important to incorporate mindful living, so, we use the cards as a focus compass, and in the late evening, I generally watch inspirational Youtube videos. In between I try to catch up with reading the hubs by friends or new writers that may catch my interest, but its hard to keep up with all the goings on in Hubpages. Still it's a community I enjoy, love the people I have met, and hopefully will never dissapear. It's great to touch base with you! Thank you for adding your insightful comments, your presence is always appreciated. :)


anjalichugh profile image

anjalichugh 5 years ago from New York

What a lovely message Marie! You simply said it all....nothing left for me to say.

Nonetheless, I would like to share something with you. I was an arrogant, aggressive and angry woman when I was younger but the adversities I faced, helped me mellow down to the extent that I almost turned in to an empath. It was a sudden overload on my system with all those emotions surging inside. Even though I battled with my own emotions and the ones that I picked up from other people, I guess it was worth it, as, I had at least learnt to relate to someones pain. I had developed the ability to understand the reason behind inherent weaknesses and strengths in people I interacted with. Condoning and forgiving became much easier. So long story short, if I hadn't witnessed pain & misery from close quarters, I would never have become HUMAN in the first place and would never have understood 'compassion'.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Anjali, Thanks! And I had little chills reading your shift from the way you related to the world in your younger years to where you are now. In the midst of whatever weaknesses we may have, if we have an open heart, life's lessons will transform us into a being with compassion and often grace.

I used to be very volatile in my youth, whatever came into my mind, I would say it without censoring myself, but life taught me to use wisdom and compassion. No matter how angry I get, I will not put down anyone, even if I may be on the recieving end of a putdown, as was in the case of the emotionally abusive ex. Thankfully, these dynamics are no longer part of my life.

Can I be be blunt? I know you are a lawyer as well as a Reiki healer, and I often have wondered about the two very different worlds of a lawyer requiring an aggresive personality in order to protect a client, to being compassionate and nurturing as healer would be. Now I think I understand; you are blending your world very well. Good for karma!

I always enjoy your beautiful energy, thanks for stopping by. :)


dayzeebee profile image

dayzeebee 5 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Love the essence of compassion shared in this hub Marie and may I just say that I am honored to be one of the recipients of your love and compassion --- constantly given generously. Oh how blessed I am. Hugs:)


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Daisy, thank you and likewise, my friend. Was thinking last night that I am indeed blessed to have connected with you and Michelle spiritually. :)


V Kumar profile image

V Kumar 5 years ago

Great hub. Thanks for sharing.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Thank you, Kumar!


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 5 years ago from malang-indonesia

Very inspiring hub. Thanks for writing this, my friend. Take care and have a nice weekend!

Prasetio


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Thanks Pras for reading and commenting. Its always good to see you. You also have a lovely weekend!


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 5 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA

Hi Marie, it`s so nice to come back and read your inspiring words again. Life is much easier with adequate quantity of compassion, if all people would be like you, this world would be very nice place to live on. I hope you are well?

A lots of love and happy Easter to you and Phill.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Hi Tatjana, good to see you as always! Thanks for your loving words, very much appreciated. :) it indeed would be so beautiful if we have like you said and adequate quantity of compassion but as we both know, the conciousness of the mankind has not yet reached the level of Love; too much jugement, fear and anger still going on.

Happy Easter to you as well and lots of hugs and love.


shimla profile image

shimla 5 years ago

“Sympathetic consciousness of others' distress together with a desire to alleviate it.” I love that definition. A beautifully and inimately written hub about a natural quality of consciousness that loves to find expression. We use the angel cards too and give special attention to whatever comes up througout the day - today I picked up TRUST. I found your lovely comment on my article this morning, which lead to me reading this beautiful hub so I will trust in the Source of things to guide me through the day and forever.Thanks and voted up.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Hi Shimla, thanks for stopping by and adding your energy and kind comments here, and for the vote up! :) Today we recieved the card of ABUNDANCE, and it showed up in interesting expressions, such as a total feeling of contenment for the richness that being around nature gave us.


Rebecca E. profile image

Rebecca E. 5 years ago from Canada

as always I am in awe of your writing, you say so many things is so few words, love this hub... I've stumbled it and hope that you'll get traffic blessings for this powerful message.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Rebecca, Oooh, I so appreciate your stumbling my hub and your encouragement. Thank you and many blessings to you!


daravuthz profile image

daravuthz 5 years ago from Cambodia

Voting up, Great Hub. Thanks for writing on this subject.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Than you, Daravuthz for the vote! :)


DjBryle profile image

DjBryle 5 years ago from Somewhere in the LINES of your MIND, and HOPEFULLY at the RIPPLES of your HEART. =)

This hub is so beautiful that it made my day complete. Being compassionate is difficult to do all the time most especially when we are exposed to the real world of rudeness and selfishness. This hub is a very touching way to remind us, how wonderful it is to be compassionate and how it can make our life and the life of others more beautiful. Thanks for sharing another hub that gave more meaning to my life! Voted up for a useful, awesome and beautiful hub!

- Jen


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Hi Jen, I have been the recepient of the occasional rude person and it doesn't feel good! Such as wishing someone a good holiday and getting a sneer in return. Yikes. Thanks so much for your awesome votes and your beautiful spirit!


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA

Marie,

You are far more compassionate that I am, and I wish sometimes I did not let things get to me. On Sunday I let a comment someone made towards me really hurt my feelings, and I realized that it was not about it at all. I am better at letting things go then I was years ago, but I still need to get better at things.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Julia, I too am sensitive, I think being human, most of us have a button that when pushed brings on our emotional reactions. I have lost some of my over sensitiviy though, but I am still a work in progress. Hugs to you.


MellyMoo profile image

MellyMoo 5 years ago from Australia

Great hub! For me now, this is the only way to live isn't it ... with compassion I mean


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

MellyMoo, Yes, absolutely! :)


De Greek profile image

De Greek 5 years ago from UK

Compassion is such an important word, though :-)


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Yes it is, DG! :)


NiaLee profile image

NiaLee 5 years ago from BIG APPLE

VioletSun, I thank you for that hub and for the Dalai Lama's message which explains a little further your idea. I believe in Love and Compassion and very funny, I pick u p my cards too and compassion popped up a lot at a time I needed to calm down, forgive, connect the right way with people around me. Compassion, forgiveness, patience, understanding are so necessary parts of that Love that goes everywhere. I sometimes reduce all that and more into: Be Love.

I tell myself Be Love when things get challenging, Be Love when I deal with somebody difficult, Be Love when I need to get the strength to stay on tracks or fing alignement in my experience.

Be Love and Peace everybody, love and peace to you all.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Nia, I agree with your thoughts... Being willing to be love aligns one to the attributes of love which includes compassion. It can be challenging at times as we live in a world of duality and ego but it's a worthy way of living. Thanks for your beautiful thoughts.


carcro profile image

carcro 5 years ago from Winnipeg

Great hub, couldn't agree more, we all need to show more compassion, not just for others, but ourselves too. Everyone has a story to tell, so its best not to judge others, but have compassion for their plight. Thanks for sharing this! Voted Up and Beautiful!


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 5 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Carcro, I agree with your comments that everyone has a story to tell. Thanks for the vote and rating! :)


ubanichijioke profile image

ubanichijioke 4 years ago from Lagos

A classical piece, evidential and informative. Compassion is a quality we all must imbibe. Be blessed


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 4 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Yes, compassion is an important quality to have, helps us be kind to one another. Thank you for reading and your comments.


Cleanclover profile image

Cleanclover 4 years ago from Piece of land!

I meditate daily and so by going deeper and deeper into myself I an more compassionate towards people around me. More and more people should meditate and make this earth a better place.

Thank you for the hub. It's very enlightening.


NiaLee profile image

NiaLee 4 years ago from BIG APPLE

Violetsun, thisis a beautiful seed you have sown in our hearts and bodyminds! Thanks again for reminding us to let go of negative energy and recenter on the positive, for ourselves and others.

I happen to have conflicted feelings about some situations and you just reminded me that I am a being of light, love and peace, so I will do what I do as such!

Love and peace on all, blessings on all the universe and especially to my hubpages friends.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 4 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Cleanclover, thank you for the reminder to meditate and to go deeper. When we connect that place deep within us that is Eternal we are bound to become more loving and compassionate as it's our essential nature. Again, thanks for your reminder.

Nialee, I also have moments of conflicted feelings, it's part of being human, but at least we are aware of them and can "observe" them and let them go, even if we may have to do this again and again. I find that focusing on things that fill my soul keeps me from falling into negativity...

I have to visit your Hubs as well as Cleanclover's. Have not be very active in Hubpages lately, but do not want to lose touch with my hubpages friends, especially the spiritual ones. :)


ubanichijioke profile image

ubanichijioke 4 years ago from Lagos

Great words, attitude and a positive article. Well brewed and composed!


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 4 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Thank you for your encouragement! :)


KimberlyLake profile image

KimberlyLake 4 years ago from California

Very nice article. Thank you for sharing your personal experiences with us. It is important to monitor our perceptions as we go through our day. I agree if we can stay in a peaceful place in our mind and attitude we will be happier people. Love is to give, even to our enemies.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 4 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Hi Kimberly, Just saw your comment today. I agree about monitoring our perceptions as we go through our day as it's so easy to get into a negative mind state.


Parks McCants profile image

Parks McCants 4 years ago from Eugene Oregon U.S.A.

Thank you VioletSun.

It is said that if you ask for it, it will come to you. I wasn't looking for a message of compassion today, but it came to me through your writing. This is a wonderful thought provoking piece that I believe most can relate to.

Getting rid of the negative thought, places one on the path to a joyous, fulfilling life.

As I give to you, so shall you return the gift to me.. It's that simple. As a surfer,young father,trades-person, business owner, boyfriend, husband, mentor, consultant- my life continues to evolve on a daily basis. I wasn't always a giving, truly kind person. And the older I become, the more often I must look back to my own past, slowly shaking my head in the nod of self forgiveness.

Were evolving...


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 4 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Parks, we all do the best that we can at whatever point of awareness we were, so forgiving ourselves is important. I admit, however, at times I may catch a glimpse of some foolishness in my younger years, but know better than to beat myself up, so I stop. :) And yes, we are all evolving, thank goodness. Thanks for your reading and comments!


justmesuzanne profile image

justmesuzanne 4 years ago from Texas

Love the anecdote and good tie-in with the thoughts of the Dalai Lama! Excellent perspective! Voted up and awesome! :)


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 4 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

I love the Dalai Lama, such a good spiritual teacher. Thanks for the vote up! :)


Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 4 years ago from East Coast, United States

I've been thinking about compassion and the apparent lack of it in today's society. On FB, someone has been posting pictures of young men lying on the sidewalk, sleeping on curbs, etc. The question is then asked, "Is this guy on heroin?" Then the comments. People seem to think this is funny. It's heartbreaking.


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 4 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

Dolores, My goodness, that's cruel. This is why we as individuals need to be the compassion we wish to see in the world.


loveofnight profile image

loveofnight 3 years ago from Baltimore, Maryland

too often we react without thought, forgetting to consider the fact that our fellow humans are also going through this thing called life. it may take a village to raise a child but it can also take a village to raise/help guide an adult by way of compassion and love......a good read indeed,be well


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 3 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie Author

I agree with you, it's important to learn how live mindfully so we don't react from ego. Love and compassion is the higher road.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 2 years ago from Southern California, USA

Compassion is definitely a lesson we should all learn.

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