Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A spiritual revolution

Yesterday, I found the passage copied below and was very struck by it as I had never come across this statement by the Dalai Lama before.

In my work with individuals, I observe so much selfishness - and apparently unconscious selfishness at that - that I think we do indeed need such a revolution:

My call for a spiritual revolution is not a call for a religious revolution. Nor is it a reference to a way of life that is somehow otherworldly, still less to something magical or mysterious. Rather it is a call for a radical reorientation away from our habitual preoccupation with self. It is a call to turn toward the wider community of beings with whom we are connected, and for conduct which recognizes others' interests alongside our own.

-- The 14th Dalai Lama

I don't think people are meaning to be selfish - really. I think, however, that the prevailing culture imprints the idea upon people that they're actually supposed to be more concerned about getting their own way than anything else.


  1. And that we're entitled to things. If we're entitled, we don't stop to be grateful. Kindness is under-rated.

  2. Anonymous3:26 PM

    Perhaps some of our selfishness is actually motivated by fear and terror of what's happening on our planet. Who among us has not had some sense of apprehension about our life and our world? Yes, it is always good to remember to be kind...and also, to remember our compassion for ourselves and others when we are just plain scared to death.

    annie c

  3. Thanks for observing the connection between a sense of entitlement and a lack of gratitude, MorningStar. That's helpful.

    Also, Annie, thank you for bringing up the fear and terror aspect. I had not thought of that at all.

    I think I'm going to talk about this in ongoing class tonight and both of your observations are very helpful.


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