Ode to Compassion
Morning has broken through the darkness of the skies.
Shadows, remnants of darkness, begin to form,
an extension of living on this earth,
an extension of being human
with a human body and a human mind.
As the sun rises and takes its place in the Eastern sky,
my mind begins to plan the day,
all the things I have to do
to survive and thrive,
while my soul’s only desire is to open up to receive
the love that flows around me
and through me.
And compassion begins. It flows through my soul,
into the crevices and folds of my brain,
washing away the cares of the day.
My hopes and dreams settle into their proper place
waiting for the right moment to begin their daily search
waiting for the flow of love,
the energy that will make all things happen
in the right order,
at the right time,
for the right reason.
The shadows disappear in the noon day light.
I stand in awe of the life I feel around me,
of the life force that flows through me.
I sense the divine light that in beyond my human eyes.
I begin to see, to touch, to feel
that divine presence washing my mind and heart
until my sole desire is to share this abundance with others.
As I reach out to touch, ecstasy flows into my heart and mind.
I love this life, these divine moments,
this body that lives and breathes,
this heart that desires to care,
and this mind that can take me
to the place I need to be.
During the past few weeks, we have been looking at acts of compassion; so today, let’s try to grasp what true compassion really is. Compassion is defined as our emotional response when we perceive suffering that results in an action to help. Connecting with others through compassion is, above all, an act of love. Where does this kind of love come from? What does it look like? What does it feel like? There are the three kinds of love that come from romance, being parents, and having intimate friendships. All of these forms are examples of two way love. We create; we give: we receive. In compassionate love, we give from our mind, heart, and soul without any thought or receiving anything in return.
Compassion separates us from the animal kingdom and even from the parameters of normal human functioning. We are not compassionate to gain approval from others or even to satisfy the needs of our ego. It is not a feel good activity in the sense that we experience pleasure when we are sharing our resources with those who have less. It is not about casting out the feelings of guilt when we have more than we need and others are barely surviving. It is not even feeling better when we get rid of the feelings of feeling guilty. If we have abundance, we simply have abundance. It is what it is. Whether we share our abundance or not is not really compassion in and of itself. Compassion is not part of the process of balance that is needed for a healthy mind; although in true compassion, the mind does comes along for the ride.
True compassion is the natural function of our heart. It is a feeling but it is more than a feeling. It is a desire to share our walk with another, but it is more than just a desire. It is an action. In true compassion, we share our resources as a means to connect and share the love energy from our heart. When we sense the emotions and feelings of someone else, our soul reaches out to try to balance their negative energy with our positive energy, the energy of compassionate love. When we give, there is a smile that says, “I will stay with you through this difficult time. I will share all my physical, emotional, and spiritual resources to support you until you can carry yourself”. It is what we would do for our sons and daughters; we treat everyone we meet as though they were family.
Compassion is the natural outpouring of the love that flows through our soul from the universal source of life and love. As we give love through compassion, we not only bless the person or persons we serve, but in the process we also bless ourselves. This becomes our main source of ecstasy or joy which is the energy of the universal presence living in us and through us. It is the energy we can create that lets us share in the divine.