Divine Abode of Loving Kindness
When asked about his religious beliefs in an interview, the Dalai Lama said,
“My religion is kindness”. These words of deep compassion came from a man who was politically undermined and driven out of his own country by the Maoist communists, who since then has had to watch his entire race be subjected to political persecution and discrimination.
“My religion is kindness — the Dalai Lama”
When asked about his religious beliefs in an interview, author James Baldwin said, “I believe that the whole world is being held together by those few individuals who really know the meaning of love. I believe in love”. These compassionate words came from a man who was discriminated against his entire life, who grew up watching his family and his entire race be brutalized and publicly humiliated. In the world James Baldwin grew up in (1940’s through 60’s America), prejudice and discrimination against African-Americans had been socially institutionalized.
“I believe that the whole world is being held together by those few individuals who really know the meaning of love. I believe in love. — James Baldwin”
No matter what the odds were against them or the intensity and negativity of the oppression, the loving kindness of these two men remained undiminished and their quality of heart would not be obscured.
Individuals like these have proven that no worldly conditions can prevent love from being realized and expressed and no one and nothing can stop it. Not any individual nor an entire government.
Meditation teaches us that true love, like the mind, is not dependent or limited, but is infinite and immeasurable. This quality of loving kindness is stronger and more resilient than any negative force that can ever be brought against it. It is the precious jewel in the lotus. The precious jewel of our love that exists in the lotus of every human heart just waiting to be realized.
It may be obscured but never destroyed and that is why it is considered to be one of the four brahmavihāras, the Four Immeasurables or the divine adobes.
Meditation is the practice of realizing our brahmavihāras, our four immeasurables which includes loving kindness. They are called immeasurable because they have unlimited beneficial factors and a boundless, limitless capacity. These four immeasurables are: loving kindness, compassion, appreciative joy and equanimity.
The seeds of these qualities exist deep within the ground of every human being. These qualities naturally germinate, grow and blossom within us and are cultivated and realized through regular meditation practice. Meditation allows us to experience this transformation and experience the natural loving radiance of our minds and hearts.
The ancient Zen teachers called this “seeing your original face, the face you wore before you were born”. You have always been the essence of loving kindness.
To make loving kindness your religion or your practice, according to the Dalai Lama, is to dissolve all separateness between yourself and others, between yourself and your world.
To recognize love as the primary unifying factor of all life as James Baldwin proclaimed, is to realize the boundless power of love. This is the real power of loving kindness; the recognition of your own jewel in the lotus and than the recognition of that precious jewel in others. Loving kindness is like a seed at the core of our being; it is the ground of our being.
In meditation we practice non-judgement, non-grasping, non-attachment to the present moment which opens up our minds and hearts to a calmness and clarity that cultivates, making room or space within for the brahmavihāras to grow and manifest. Practicing loving kindness can change the way we relate to stress, confusion and negative emotions in our lives. It can make all the difference between surviving in the world and truly living.
“Practicing loving kindness can change the way we relate to stress, confusion and negative emotions in our lives. It can make all the difference between surviving in the world and truly living.”
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