Updated: Mar 23
I have practiced for mindfulness meditation for more than 25 years but it wasn't until after I became a mother than I really developed a compassionate mindfulness practice. By this I mean I began developing the capacity to be able to pause and reflect on my automatic behaviours and genuinely help myself and others. I'm by no means an expert, instead I prefer to embody a beginners mind and here's what I have earned from being compassionate.
Compassion naturally arises from the practice of exploring emotional, psychological and physical pain. I have learned so much from my own suffering and that of others through my private practice work and insights gleamed along the way. Habits, patterns, relational emotions, the psyche, impulses and orientations that exist in these inner realms of suffering are complex.Compassion practice is the opposite of avoiding, resisting, numbing, defending and all the ways we unintentionally perpetuate our suffering in the desire to be free from it.
A deeper exploration of these qualities of suffering allows awareness to emerge and we can discover that the awareness is always there and everything is arising from it and it's an essential aspect of our being. Through this realisation, compassion naturally radiates outwardly from us and toward all beings. This compassion is powerful, free, open and boundless.
In the spaciousness of mindfulness being our spontaneous responding has a freshness, harmony of action, appreciation, creative value and wonder; our presence offers this generously to all. Begin with awareness and realise this is not a product of our experience but something we can come to know if we are willing to explore the true nature of the mind.
“Compassion has nothing to do with achievement at all. It is spacious and very generous. When a person develops real compassion, he is uncertain whether he is being generous to others or to himself because compassion is environmental generosity, without direction, without " for me" and without " for them". It is filled with joy, spontaneously existing joy, constant joy in the sense of trust, in the sense that joy contains tremendous wealth, richness.”