True Kindness

“The most powerful medicine we can offer for suffering of any kind is simply kindness.” – Dzogchen Ponlop

True kindness allows us to say “You are not alone.” “I see you.” “I hear you”, and perhaps most importantly “I am with you.” Kindness is the type of genuine connection that can change the trajectory of a life. If you’re in a position to do so, you should always be willing to give food, shelter, work, etc. but remember that [mks_highlight color=”#eeee22″]every one of us is always in a position to be genuine and kind.[/mks_highlight]

It’s important to understand that helping others doesn’t mean we have the goal of “saving them”, or setting them on the “right course” according to our own view. If there is any way we can really “save someone”, being kind and genuine is probably the only way. You don’t save people by pushing them toward a specific goal that you have in mind for them. If you have such motivations, your actions are more like those of a sales person than a genuine friend. There’s a lot of egocentricity in wanting to be a savior.

Instead, try to be a genuine friend to others. When you have a genuine friend, you know that they will always be there for you. A genuine friend isn’t trying to “convert” you or “save you”. A relationship can go bad when one person is trying to save the other. You may be trying to rescue a friend or partner from grief, depression, the wrong political/religious views, nevertheless, you must respect the integrity of each individual and your own limitations of knowledge. In most cases, kindness is all you need to offer. A kind and genuine heart can melt the barriers that separate us. Although another person may be experiencing sadness or a difficult situation, your kindness can convey a healing sense of warmth and peace.


About the Author
Noah Rasheta is a Buddhist teacher, lay minister, and author, as well as the host of the podcast Secular Buddhism. He teaches mindfulness and Buddhist philosophy online and in workshops all around the world. He works with others to make the world a better place as he studies, embodies, and teaches the fundamentals of Buddhist philosophy, integrating Buddhist teachings with modern science, humanism, and humor. He lives in Kamas, Utah, with his wife and three kids.