Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Path towards compassion

"We become compassionate not from altruism which denies the self for the sake of the other, but from the insight that sees and feels one is the other.” ~Huston Smith

(quote found at this blog)

Today I had a meeting with an old friend who I don't see very often these days. Our twenty four year friendship has indeed been through many twists and turns on its rugged path of love. We shared a house at one time, bringing up our sons, as we kept the wolf of single motherhood at bay. We've shared our spiritual journey as well, holding each other through the mystery, growth pains/gains and elevated illuminations. We've both learnt a lot from each other about so much, and still do. 
Today we talked about the 'shadow'.

The shadow is only there because of Light. The shadow of the self, so rich in its lessons of pain and suffering, and such a cornucopia of ripe pickings for the growth of the Soul. And on the ground, so little comfort and smooth running...

Today I felt deep compassion for each of us, as we reached into the void to access that place of Stillness and Heart in our search for the truth. I found myself opening my heart, for a moment as I drank in the Shadow. 
It was a bit like Tonglen, the Buddhist way of transmuting pain and suffering into Light. (Pema Chodron teaches this so well..)

I am grateful to my old friend, even though on a cellular level I feel myself bracing for the acrid winds of   karma. On a deeper level I am grateful for the momentary crack in the illusion which we busily hold together while going about our lives; forgetting about Love and all-that-is, and that we are all One.

“And can it be that in a world so full and busy, the loss of one
creature makes a void in any heart, so wide and deep that nothing but the width and depth of eternity can fill it up. -Charles Dickens

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