By Jes Wright
“Compassion is the radicalness of our time,” ~ Dalai Lama
It is a radical act to be compassionate.
I don’t mean the explosive protesting acts of being radical, but the very act of going to our roots.
After all, the word radical means roots.
For so many of us, our roots are a twisted knot like a pea start left in a pot for too long, so we have to gently break loose the roots from the dark soil before transplanting.
It’s any wonder if any of us with roots like that could ever find a path of compassion.
Why be compassionate anyway?
Why be radical?
Most importantly, why not?
Why not try going to our roots (especially if they are like the pea,) and begin to unravel them, slowly?
Our hearts will race, and we’ll want to pull out those shields to deflect the pain. But how will any of us truly heal if we don’t untangle our roots?
It is a challenge to be compassionate because it means accepting our own difficulties first.
And yet, the universe will throw annoying things in our path to test our compassion, and maybe, that’s why it is so radical to be compassionate.
We have to honor our ability (and sometimes, our inability) to respond in moments that are challenging.
As the Dalai Lama said, “Compassion is the radicalness of our time,” because so many of us are unraveling our roots—getting to the causes of our suffering, and then finding a way to grow despite the odds.
Editor: Dana Gornall