Cultivating kindness

To work with mindfulness in a daily practise, systematically, with momentum, is to actively cultivate one´s mind.

I read a quote from Dalai Lama, he said: “My religion is kindness, what is your religion?”

Our thoughts are basically stuff that somehow has been coded into our brain, our nervous system. When we have done our formal practise for some time and we have been aware of all the thoughts and feelings that fill our inner life, especially the unpleasant ones, we can sometimes ask ourselves: “Is this actually me? This is not how I see myself – or – This is not how I want to see myself”.

Mindfulness has in itself nothing to do with personal development, because mindfulness is about being aware and accepting. But it can certainly lead to personal development, because you may realise that you sincerely want to be a better parent, a better spouse, a better friend, a better colleague. You may literally wish to grow other plants in your inner life than the ones that are already there. Well, some of them you may want to keep, and some need replacing.

And this is where the cultivation starts,

You can decide to practise kindness. Think of it as an organic proces. If you decide to sow a seed, first you need to cultivate the bed of soil in a place where the sunshine can reach the sprout, once it is there.

When you have sown the seed, you need to wait, it takes time for the seed to sprout. You need to provide the plant, which you cannot even see yet because it is still in the form of a seed, with water and keep the weeds away. Once the sprout is there you need to keep on nurturing it until it is able to grow by itself. Be patient – the first many years the plant is small.

Practise gratefulness when you see the first small sprouts of kindness towards other people and the world. As your inner kindness plant grows you will notice it more often – and every time you notice it, every time you become aware that you are actually practising kindness, be grateful.

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