It’s easy to judge and condemn others, whether by virtue of our own preconceived ideas of right and wrong, or in terms of the law.

But trying to understand others requires a great deal of effort, and the greater the effort, the greater the reward. By attempting to understand, we are opening our mind to the vast field of possibilities that can fuel behaviour and attitudes.

Will we ever truly and fully understand the other? No, because we have never lived the other’s life and we have never lived from inside the other’s mind, and we never will.

But by trying to understand from whence cometh the other, we are ensuring that our portal to compassion stays wide open. We become less inclined to adopt attitudes born of prejudice, hatred and fear but rather tip the scales of perception in favour of wisdom and ultimately, unconditional love.

“Compassion is the desire that moves the individual self to widen the scope of its self-concern to embrace the whole of the universal self.” ~ Arnold Toynbee

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