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Compassion is the Basis of Morality

If you want to be happy, be compassionate. Love and care are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive

Published: 25th December 2014 05:56 AM  |   Last Updated: 25th December 2014 05:56 AM   |  A+A-

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CHENNAI: There is an account of a holy man who once had to go on a long journey. In those days, people would carry bundles with them. So he packed a bundle and filled it with enough bread to eat on the trip. He travelled on foot, and when night fell, he stopped at a mosque to rest.

The next morning he set out again on the journey. He walked quickly for about ten miles and then decided to stop for breakfast. He sat down and opened his bundle to take out the bread. When he opened the bundle, he found that the bread was full of ants. “Oh, this is too bad!” he thought.

Most people at this point would be upset that their food had been destroyed. But something else was bothering the holy man. He said, “This is awful. I have taken these poor ants a long way from their home in the mosque. They must be missing their families, parents, and children greatly.”

He had so much compassion for the ants and their welfare, that the holy man walked the 10 miles back to the mosque to take the ants back to their home.

We find accounts like this in the lives of the saints and mystics. They have a great depth of compassion within them for the suffering of others, from human beings to the smallest of ants.

The more spiritual we grow, the more attuned we are to the murmurings of our soul. Our soul is full of compassion. The more we identify with the mind, the less compassion we feel. The more we identify with the soul, the more compassion we have. We can gauge our own lives by the depth of compassion we experience for the suffering of others.

How many of us even consider the tender feelings of the lesser brothers and sisters in God? The vegetarian diet is a compassionate one. If we saw what animals had to go through to be used for food, we would feel compassion and would never want to see them hurt.

Let us work towards a state in which we are kind and loving. Let us make sure our words are sweet. Let us make sure we are tender and compassionate to others. Let us soothe the broken hearts with love, affection, and sweet words.

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