We See What We Look For

January 20, 2013

Suffering Exists, And So Does Something Much Bigger

This video shows a crowd spontaneously breaking out into song after being trapped in a tunnel for three and a half hours.  The song, fittingly, is “Lean On Me.”  This video gives me goosebumps.  It is such a beautiful example of human nature. The world is such a complicated place, full of more beauty and heartache then we could ever see in our own lifetime.  When we let ourselves sit in our fears and anxieties then our view narrows to only see the sources of our fear and anxiety, thus causing us to feel even more scared and anxious.

We must take personal responsibility to widen our range of view…  to see more.  I am not saying to deny that pain is in the world.  Of course it is, and denying its presence would be futile.  But look for the beauty that is also there.  So often it is the very sources of human suffering that becomes the soil for the growth of beauty, compassion, and connection.

Buddhist Wisdom From Mr. Rogers’ Mom

Mr. Rogers has said, “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ ”  Don’t close your eyes to the truth of the world.  We HAVE to see the suffering that exists in order to grow our compassion and connection with others.  But don’t dwell on the suffering.  Pull back and also be open to seeing the human impulse for kindness that will also be there.  Looking for and finding these kindnesses are like finding glimpses into a warm light shining through cracks in the wall.  That light that comes from the place deep within each of us, who all seek to love, to be loved, to belong to something bigger than just our single story.  The world is full of suffering.  And it is also full of beauty. To be fully present we must be open to seeing both.


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