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It’s good to remember that other human beings are like us. We are born the same way; we die the same way. While we’re alive it’s better to be able to trust each other as friends. We earn other people’s trust when we show a genuine concern for their well-being.
Love, kindness, compassion and tolerance are qualities common to all the great religions, and whether or not we follow any particular religious tradition, the benefits of love and kindness are obvious to anyone.
For some people the idea of compassion entails a complete disregard for or even a sacrifice of their own interests. This is not the case. In fact, we first of all have to have a wish to be happy ourselves – if we don’t love ourselves like that, how can we love others?
"Climate change is not the concern of just one or two nations. It is an issue that affects the whole of humanity and every living being on this earth." (From HHDL's Message to Delegates to the COP24 UN Climate Conference https://t.co/GEbUIOEPIl)
Everybody appreciates kindness, but unfortunately our modern education system, with its materialistic goals, doesn’t have much room for inner values. We need to make people more aware of such inner values on the basis of scientific findings, common sense and common experience.
We need friends and friendship is based on trust. To earn trust, money and power aren’t enough; you have to show some concern for others. You can’t buy trust in the supermarket.
Even more important than the warmth and affection we receive, is the warmth and affection we give. It is by giving warmth and affection, by having a genuine sense of concern for others, in other words through compassion, that we gain the conditions for genuine happiness.
Human beings are social animals. What brings us together is love and affection—anger drives us apart. Just as we employ physical hygiene to protect our health, we need emotional hygiene, the means to tackle our destructive emotions, if we are to achieve peace of mind.
We all want to live a happy life, so we have to learn to live together in trust and mutual respect. We do have differences of race, nationality, religious faith and so on, but these differences are secondary in comparison to our equality in being human.
The quality of what we do depends on our motivation, which is why we have to learn how to cultivate a compassionate mind.
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