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We Need A Revolution In Kindness

We Need A Revolution In Kindness

We have recently witnessed the result of one man’s madness that was unleashed on a group of innocent people in Tucson, Arizona. This recent horror occurred largely because no one responded when the young killer was previously silently screaming for help. And then we witnessed two prominent voices speak up, one in defense of herself and one encouraging greater kindness and compassion.

Sarah Palin used the occasion to defend her own mistakes, such as targeting Congresswoman Giffords, in the process making herself appear to be both the injured party and the savior. She criticized those who “manufactured a blood libel” against her without realizing what it meant, rather than accepting that she might be the one who had erred.

In contrast, at the memorial for the victims, President Obama urged us all to look at our own behavior: “At a time when our discourse has become so sharply polarized … it’s important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we’re talking with each other in a way that heals, not in a way that wounds … We may ask ourselves if we’ve shown enough kindness and generosity and compassion to the people in our lives… what matters is not wealth, or status, or power, or fame — but rather, how well we have loved and what small part we have played in making the lives of other people better.”

The world is made up of endless difficulties and challenges. But blaming others or losing our cool does not resolve the conflict. Such self-centeredness is not kind or compassionate; rather it breeds greed, hatred and further delusion. When we are self-centered we think of ourselves first; when we are kind we think of both ourselves and others.

Wikipedia describes a revolution as a “fundamental change in power or organizational structures that takes place in a relatively short period of time.” Normally applied to politics, we believe this can also be applied to our own inner structures: how we think, talk and behave with each other.

A revolution also means a turning around, so a kindness revolution means turning ourselves away from hate, self-centeredness and derision, toward caring, kindness and compassion. And a revolution is a re-evolution, an opportunity to transcend differences so we can offer genuine respect to one another. Kindness is completely revolutionary: it will change each one of us, it will change others, and it will definitely change the world.

How different our world would be if we were all just a bit more compassionate and kind. So what is it that prevents us? Kindness is free, it never goes bad, it has no sell-by date, we can never get enough of it, and we can never give enough of it. As the Dalai Lama says, “kindness is my religion.”

However, kindness is often overlooked or undervalued. Which is a pity as it takes only a very small amount of it to turn someone’s day from bad to wonderful. Discover kindness. Practice being kind to others for the whole day and see how good you feel. Then try doing it for a week, or even a lifetime!

What does being kind mean to you? Can you see how to bring more kindness into your life? Do comment below.

Related:
Start a Kindness Revolution
Kindness Matters
Why Random Acts of Kindness are So Important

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Ed and Deb Shapiro

You can learn more in our book, Be The Change: How Meditation Can Transform You and the World, forewords by the Dalai Lama and Robert Thurman, with contributors Marianne Williamson, Jane Fonda, Ram Dass, Byron Katie and others. Our 3 meditation CD’s: Metta—Loving kindness and Forgiveness; Samadhi–Breath Awareness and Insight; and Yoga Nidra–Inner Conscious Relaxation, are available at: EdandDebShapiro.com

94 comments

+ add your own
3:39AM PDT on Mar 14, 2013

Thank you :)

5:09AM PST on Jan 31, 2013

Thanks for ....

3:06AM PST on Jan 23, 2013

Kindness is in fact something simple

1:03AM PDT on Jun 23, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

3:36PM PDT on May 2, 2012

ty

2:02PM PST on Dec 19, 2011

Kindness can be taught--your children (and perhaps others) are watching.

1:34PM PST on Nov 28, 2011

Thank you

7:15AM PDT on Jul 16, 2011

It seems as if this problem is also in other countries... that people have forgotten kindness, and that most of them only want to think about their egos and their own interests. Here in germany this is a big problem, too. People have turned into so superficial and egoistic, and these who are not like them, have to wear a mask and hide themselves, of if they don't hide, they are treated as if they were enemies...

"We have learned to fly the air like birds and swim the sea like fish, but we have not yet learned the simple art of living together as brothers." (Martin Luther King)

10:10PM PDT on Mar 29, 2011

As Progressives, we must support Obama in his quest to have total peace and kindness in every area of the world. Libya must be secured with all means possible before we can have kindness and peace.

6:20PM PDT on Mar 13, 2011

"mihi cura futuri"

mine is the care of the future

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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