Friday, July 9, 2010


On Facebook this morning the Dalai Lama had posted this:

"A mind committed to compassion is like an overflowing reservoir - a constant source of energy, determination and kindness. This mind can also be likened to a seed; when cultivated, it gives rise to many other qualities, such as forgiveness, tolerance, inner strength, and the confidence to overcome fear and insecurity."

I love starting my day with his inspiring ideas about the world.

Of course there is a standard order to my web viewing in the morning. First I check my personal emails, then I post a blog to my site, then I head to Facebook, then I head over to my Google Homepage to check my favorite blogs I RSS Feed to, then it is over to Yahoo. I hate to admit it, but I peruse the 'news', mostly trash articles about celebrities and sports, in which the once in a while actual news article takes me off guard, at the top of the screen before I wander into my Yahoo Mail to check my 'everything else' email box.

I cam across this little article today, NBC Changes Rules to Allow Gay 'Today' Wedding. Reading the article it seemed pretty straightforward, what I found offensive was many of the comments.

I was immediately brought back to the Dalai Lama's quote I had read a few moments before, ironically, about compassion. Why is it so hard for us as human beings to have compassion for one another? Regardless of our beliefs about one thing or other?

Lately I have found that holds true for Mom's. Someone, somewhere is always judging the way other Mom's are doing it. Whether on Facebook, blogs, or articles. I am pained when I see light remarks made that reflect a quick judgment upon another, who is also just trying to do her best. Parenting is so dang hard, no matter how you look at it. Let us show compassion instead of assumptions toward each other. Each of us could use all the support we can get.

I am not immune from my own snap snarkiness. I was in line at Target last night getting a birthday present for my little boy. In front of me was a woman who looked utterly terrified as she gazed at all of the food items the cashier was ringing up. She had cash in one hand and a credit card in the other. Her teenage daughter was loading the bags into the cart. The fear was seeping from her pores. Instead of compassion, I looked at her clothes and thought to myself, "If it is that bad, why do you look so darn cute in an adorable outfit?"


I quickly realized my rash arrogance. I decided to imagine the gazillion things that could have gone wrong in her life recently. Her husband could be unemployed, she could have lost her job, her husband or one of her children may be going through a medical crisis, she could have just gotten a divorce, maybe someone in her family passed away and they had unexpected travel expenses, maybe one of her kids has a huge talent the family spends a lot of money supporting, maybe...maybe...maybe...

Who are we to know? What was I to know?

Compassion allows us to see the humanity in us all. The fragile, scary, joyous humaness we each posses. If we just try to put ourselves in each others shoes, instead of being so quick to judge, we could offer another human the most amazing gift of all...simple compassion.


One Girl Creative said...

Great post, Jen.

Unfortunately in this day and age of the internet, people prefer to use their anonymity and hide behind their computers to post such harsh, cruel comments. It truly disgusts me. I am always amazed how people truly find the time and effort to post such negativity—even if it is about Lindsay Lohan and her recent irresponsible behavior. So what? Who are we to judge?

And you're right, we never know what's going on in someone's life. In this economy, anything is possible.

Thanks for posting!

Cat said...

Good post.

You could also think, "Maybe it's that bad because she's really bad with money!"

A lot of people I love are really bad with money.

But what I really wanted to say was that as a Mom, you do quickly understand that whatever you do, someone nearby will disapprove. It kind of sucks, but it's kind of liberating after a while. Because you realize you might as well do whatever you want.