Only through our connectedness to others can we really know and enhance the self. And only through working on the self can we begin to enhance our connectedness to others. Harriet Goldhor Lerner
We cannot hold a torch to light another’s path without brightening our own. Ben Sweetland
I wanted to end the quotes for April with a couple more about human connection (well, I didn’t start until the middle of the month, so I thought at least two). The above two quotes seem an excellent way to sum up the quotes for the month about human connection. They discuss the reciprocal relationship of how helping one another and getting to know others, we help ourselves.
To be with Tao, we need only innocence. Deng Ming-Dao
I find this to be of excellent guidance. It isn’t saying we could have done no wrong, as Tao does not pass judgment. But what it suggests is to not become cynical, to look at things as if your eyes were new, to not defend yourself by preparing for the negative. Instead, experience things with innocence. If, as some suggest, I maintain a boyish charm, this is its source.
We can live without religion and meditation, but we cannot survive without human affection. The Dalai Lama
Most of my readers probably know my feelings about religion. I have a much fonder view of meditation. But this quote seems to go with the others I have for this month, with its focus on the human need for affection from others. It seems to me as a therapist a lot of what troubles humanity is a lack of caring and affection. Many clients present with issues related to this. As I have written before, human connection seems to me to be extremely important to our happiness and well-being. The Dalai Lama seems to see affection as integral to survival. Enjoy your connections today.
Honesty and transparency make you vulnerable. Be honest and transparent anyway. Mother Teresa
I love this quote, and stole it from a friend who posted it on Twitter last week. I believe this quote is an excellent way to live your life. Too many people feel playing games is necessary and if they didn’t, they couldn’t get what they want. I often say I live a charmed life, yet I believe I am a very honest, and generally transparent individual. This to me is evidence honesty and transparency work. They don’t just allow you to live a life more in accordance with any set of spiritual beliefs, but they work. Yes, you will be vulnerable. But life isn’t complete without both pleasant and unpleasant feelings.
The deepest kindness comes not from simply thinking of others, but in feeling what they feel. Deng Ming-Dao
I like this quote because it talks about the experience of empathy, about the connection with others that is so important. Feeling what others feel, connecting on that level, is one of the beautiful things of the human experience, of the gifts that separate us from other living things. This would be an excellent mindful exercise for the week, trying to connect with others by allowing ourselves to experience what they experience.
It is when you recognize in others the same human condition you experience that you are on the verge of knowing yourself. Deng Ming-Dao
I haven’t written much lately, and could list the excuses but will spare you. Instead I’d like to focus on a new type of post I will publish here occasionally, called Thought for the…..
I can’t call it thought for the day, because I doubt I will post that often. Hope you enjoy it and it provokes some thought.