Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Bleeding Heart (Revisited)

A post about caring and bleeding hearts received a very insightful reply cautioning against "damaged" people who try to help others without allowing themselves to heal first (and the suspicious motives and potentially disastrous outcomes connected to such help). It is an excellent point well worth addressing.

Absolutely. Those who externally talk about charity but who are not charitable to themselves, who talk about forgiveness but do not forgive themselves, display a false humility but are still deeply prideful, just like those who mistake arrogance for confidence.

Such helpers do not display bodhicitta, or caritas - a selfless boundless love that fully embraces the giver and the receiver. What they do for others they really do for themselves. They tend to impose what they think is best for others regardless of what others think, and if the recipients of their kindness aren't sufficiently grateful such givers are outraged.

This is why I included this part of a prayer I recently composed:

"May darkness and suffering transform those who experience them and in turn be transformed into a gateway for greater clarity and purpose and capacity for love. May we seek and embrace the strength and courage necessary to grow through our struggles, to find the opportunities in each crisis, and to calmly face our troubles. May we realize that our sense of isolation and incompleteness, the dark hole in our being, is a delusion, so that our grasping and craving in resentment and bitterness can give way to giving and receiving in joy and gratitude. Through this healing may our hatred give way to compassion, our greed to charity, and our ignorance to wisdom. May insecurity and arrogance give way to faith and confidence. Let cynicism and indifference and impatience burn away like the morning mist to reveal the wonder of our existence."

It is also why I like the following quote by a group of Australian aboriginal activists including Lila Watson:

"If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is tied up with mine, then let us work together."

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hello! Thanks for leaving a comment.

Everything but spam and abusive comments are welcome. Logging in isn't necessary but if you don't then please "sign" at the end of your comment. You can choose to receive email notifications of new replies to this post for your convenience, and if you find it interesting don't forget to share it. Thanks!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...