Just Like Me
“Realizing that the other person is also just like me is the basis on which you can develop compassion, not only towards those around you but also towards your enemy. Normally, when we think about our enemy, we think about harming him. Instead, try to remember that the enemy is also a human being, just like me.” His Holiness the Dalai Lama
When we confine ourselves to our small world, our immediate needs
Albert Einstein famously described this ‘optical illusion of separateness’:
“A human being…experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
Mindfulness, loving-kindness, and compassion meditations are wonderful antidotes for those moments when feeling frustrated with someone (or yourself), overwhelmed with sadness or despair, or feeling separateness or disconnection.
JUST LIKE ME
Take all, or some, of these phrases (or silent prayers) into your day and your life.
Send silent wishes to loved ones, friends and colleagues, a stranger in the street or someone you might be having a challenging time with; do this often, with authenticity and intention. This is a positive and comforting practice in moments of stress, and in moments of joy .. sending silent and heartfelt good wishes into the world.
Just like me .. this person wants to be happy
Just like me .. this person wants to be safe
Just like me .. this person wants to be free from suffering and pain
Just like me .. this person wishes to be loved and to love freely
Just like me .. this person longs for connection and friendship
Just like me .. this person has a body that at times feel pain, stress, illness, and aging
Just like me .. this person has in their life felt lost, sad, hurt, angry and disappointed
Just like me .. this person has at times felt unworthy or inadequate, frightened and unsure
Just like me .. this person has experienced uncertainty and failure
Just like me .. this person cries and is misunderstood
Just like me .. this person at times needs understanding, acceptance, and kindness
Just like me .. this person wants to be kind and caring
Just like me .. this person has dreams and wants to be the best version of themselves
Just like me .. this person has great potential and gifts for the world
Just like me .. this person is on a path
Just like me .. this person wants to belong in a world that honors peace, love and happiness
This practice can significantly shift our perspective from one of lack, caution, anxiety
I have found this to be an invaluable tool when I am feeling troubled, distressed or uncertain about what is happening in the world around me.
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