Category Archives: compassion

FRIENDSHIP!

by Caroline

Friendship is the freedom to express ourselves to another, never having to weigh our thoughts, never having to measure our words.

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ENCOURAGING BOOK

posted by Caroline

Sometimes we need hope, encouragement and support and for me often this comes in form of encouraging words from great books. This morning I found just that in a book I didn’t look at for a while……but gave me exactly the encouragement words I needed today. I think you find it encouraging as well.

From the book: I Believe in You,  edited by Gary Morris     (A Blue Mountain Arts, Collection full of Encouragement and Inspiration)

I Know This Much About You…..

I know that whatever road you choose you will find it rewarding, because you always give one hundred percent to your endeavors. I also know that whoever you encounter on that road will benefit from knowing you, because of the special and caring person that you are. You have wonderful experiences ahead of you. Live each day to the fullest, and never lose appreciation for your blessings.   – Kelly D. Caron

 

 

Shall We Meet

Posted by Linda

Koala Bears are cute little animals, but they also can be fierce. I think that what is going on in the United States today is bring out some of the ferocity. It’s also bringing rise to a lot of frustration. I am speaking for myself, but ever since the election, I haven’t felt the same. I may have disagreed with things in this country, but I have always felt pretty safe, like we would work it out. Now, I don’t know at all. Everyday I wake up wondering what new and devastating thing has happened, and much of it is due to the inexperience and volatile way matters are being handled. I fear that we are headed for a totalitarian government and that we can not get along with our allies, much less anyone else. School children in Canada are not being allowed to visit the US.When has this happened?

What can we do to make the changes that we want to and to feel more settled in our lives. I am offering a group meeting via conference call once a week to air our sadness and fear and figure out how we can best impact the future in a positive way. There will be a nominal fee. Please email me at linda.m.harris@gmail.com if interested in joining.

 

 

 

WHY PRACTICE COMPASSION?

Posted by Caroline

I like to share a great article about researches from Berkeley on why compassion is good and healthy for us in so many ways….

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Scientific research into the measurable benefits of compassion is young. Preliminary findings suggest, however, that being compassionate can improve health, well-being, and relationships. Many scientists believe that compassion may even be vital to the survival of our species, and they’re finding that its advantages can be increased through targeted exercises and practice. Here are some of the most exciting findings from this research so far.

  • Compassion makes us feel good: Compassionate action (e.g., giving to charity) activates pleasure circuits in the brain, and compassion training programs, even very brief ones, strengthen brain circuits for pleasure and reward and lead to lasting increases in self-reported happiness.
  • Being compassionate—tuning in to other people in a kind and loving manner—can reduce risk of heart disease by boosting the positive effects of the Vagus Nerve, which helps to slow our heart rate.
  • One compassion training program has found that it makes people more resilient to stress; it lowers stress hormones in the blood and saliva and strengthens the immune response.
  • Brain scans during loving-kindness meditation, which directs compassion toward suffering, suggest that, on average, compassionate people’s minds wander less about what has gone wrong in their lives, or might go wrong in the future; as a result, they’re happier.
  • Compassion helps make caring parents: Brain scans show that when people experience compassion, their brains activate in neural systems known to support parental nurturanceand other caregiving behaviors.
  • Compassion helps make better spouses: Compassionate people are more optimistic and supportive when communicating with others.
  • Compassion helps make better friends: Studies of college friendships show that when one friend sets the goal to support the other compassionately, both friends experience greater satisfaction and growth in the relationship.
  • Feeling compassion for one person makes us less vindictive toward others.
  • Restraining feelings of compassion chips away at our commitment to moral principles.
  • Employees who receive more compassion in their workplace see themselves, their co-workers, and their organization in a more positive light, report feeling more positive emotions like joy and contentment, and are more committed to their jobs.
  • More compassionate societies—those that take care of their most vulnerable members, assist other nations in need, and have children who perform more acts of kindness—are thehappier ones.
  • Compassionate people are more socially adept, making them less vulnerable to loneliness; loneliness has been shown to cause stress and harm the immune system. TO READ MORE:   greatergood.berkeley.edu

DEVELOP YOUR COMPASSION

Posted by Caroline

Image result for images of compassion Image result for images of compassion  Image result for images of compassionImage result for images of compassion

Nothing helps us build our perspective more than developing compassion for others. Compassion is a sympathetic feeling. It involves the willingness to put yourself in someone else’s shoes, to take the focus off yourself and to imagine what it’s like to be in someone else’s predicament, and simultaneously, to feel love for that person. It’s the recognition that other people’s problems, their pain and frustrations, are every bit as real as our own – often far worse. In recognizing this fact and trying to offer some assistance, we open our own hearts and greatly enhance our sense of gratitude.

Compassion is something you can develop with practice. It involves two things: intention and action. Intention simply means you remember to open your heart to others: you expand what and who matters, from yourself to other people. Action is simply the “what you do about it”. You might donate a little money or time (or both) on a regular basis to a cause near to your heart. Or perhaps you’ll offer a beautiful smile and genuine “hello” to the people you meet on the street. it’s not so important what you do,just that you do something. As Mother Teresa reminds us, “We cannot do great things on this earth. We can only do small things with great love.”

Compassion develops your sense of gratitude by taking your attention off all the little things that most of us have learned to take too seriously. When you take time, often, to reflect on the miracle of life – the miracle that you are even able to read this book – the gift of sight, of love, and all the rest, it can help to remind you that many of the things that you think of as “big stuff” are really just “small stuff” that you are turning into big stuff. (from the book: Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff….by Richard Carlson. PH.D.)