Even when I meet a stranger Each time I have the same feeling: “He is another member of my human family.” Such an attitude deepens My affection and respect for all beings. May this natural loving kindness Become my small contribution to world peace! I pray for a world that is more friendly, More loving, and for a better understanding Among the human family, on this planet. That is the appeal I make from the bottom of my heart To all those who hate suffering And cherish lasting happiness.
The Dalai Lama (excerpt from the book “My Spiritual Journey”, The Dalai Lama with Sofia Stril-Rever).
Everywhere you look someone is telling you what to do and how to live. What to eat, how to be a good person, what to buy, how to build the perfect life, how to sleep, what time to do this and that, and wow, we can get pulled so many directions!
If we get pulled by all the perspectives out there, we will get lost. We won’t have a deep sense of being comfortable, being sure. We simply can’t listen to it all – most of it is contradictory and changing every day, anyway.
I try to live by the theory that everything is a gray area. Sometimes something is great for me, and sometimes that same thing is not so right, or downright a bad choice. So different actions would fit different times, different moods. We can’t follow a list of right and wrongs, because those apply differently depending where we are in a certain moment.
If everything is a gray area, it is clear that we can’t follow all the advice out there without checking in – going within, and getting our own answer by engaging in self inquiry. If we just take outer perspectives as our own, we check out.
This brings us to the fact that it makes no sense to be concerned with what others are choosing either, because even if we are not choosing that, they are in a different place, different mood, and it is all a gray area, remember? Maybe if you were in their shoes you would be choosing differently, too.