This is my second blog about my compassion journey that begins later this month at a week-long learning retreat called Boundless Compassion.
This is a journey to deepen my understanding of compassion, of collaborating with others to bring compassion to our community (business, education, faith communities and neighbors), and bringing consciousness to my business clients of how compassion directly impacts their culture, staff productivity, and sustainability.
In preparation for this week, I’m reading Boundless Heart by Christina Feldman, cofounder of the Gaia Houses retreat center in the UK. Feldman says that to cultivate a boundless heart, we must learn and nourish four relational qualities in our lives:
- Kindness – it teaches us a way of being in this world.
- Compassion – it protects kindness from falling into sentimentality.
- Joy – needed to temper the raw edges of sorrow and pain.
- Equanimity – it brings kindness and compassion patience and steadiness.
These four qualities exclude no one – “their cultivation is dedicated to the well-being, peace, and freedom of heart of all beings.”
One way to sustain the intentions and phrases of these four qualities is to learn about the “Honeyball Discourse”. This discourse is from the Buddha’s path of wakening:
When we repetitively dwell upon fear, ill will, or obsession then we essentially get better at it and we create default mechanisms. If we incline our hearts to intentionally be kind, compassionate, and joyful with equanimity, we experience a shift in our minds and our world of experience.”
To make that shift is part of the journey of living a compassionate life.
I welcome you to post your experiences of making this shift from patterns of ill will to loving kindness.
Thank you for being on this journey of compassion with me.