In 2004, my marriage was crumbling due to my own self-sabotaging feelings, thoughts and actions. In that time of painful agony, I came across the book The Art of Happiness by the Dalai Lama and Howard Cutler. Howard Cutler, a psychiatrist posed questions to the Dalai Lama on the concept that the purpose of life is happiness.
Dalai Lama, is know as the Buddhist Tibetan spiritual leader and it was this book that got me to on the path of the miracle of compassion. The book talks about love but before dwelling into love it layouts that the foundation is compassion. Compassion holds the key to eliminate human suffering.
Compassion is highly misunderstood, unfortunately, many see it as pity and believe it to be wimpish, frail or weak. A trait considered by many in the world as pathetic. On the other hand, when you listen to the likes of Dalai Lama, Daniel Goleman or Lorne Ladner you learn compassion has got nothing to do with pity.
In the words of Dalai Lama “Compassion is not religious business, it is human business, it is not luxury, it is essential for our own peace and mental stability, it is essential for human survival.”
The beauty about compassion is that its fuels awareness, gratitude and the final crucial ingredient being laughter. If you have heard any talks done by the Dalai Lama you will get a pleasant surprise that he actually is a “professional laugher” and he openly admits to this title. He knows that laughter is the best medicine.
Listen to him and you will realise he laughs about anything and everything; he even cracks jokes about farting. In one of his interviews, he talks about a personal incident during a flight. He is unable to hold his fart. As he cannot just “let it out,” he vigilantly looks in all direction then he lifts one of his butt cheeks and farts. The interviewer and the crowd burst out in laughter with him.
Dalai Lama knows that laughter can mend bridges, bring harmony and unites humankind. He is a man who cannot return to his homeland and considers himself to be homeless for more than half a century. Yet, this serene individual laughs, laughs and laughs.
Laughter, in essence, brings six main benefits for you:
- Relaxes the whole body
- Boosts the immune system
- Decreases stress hormones
- Triggers the release of endorphins
- Improves the flow of blood
- Defuses the anger held within
Throughout one's life, one is likely to face adversity. These adverse moments affect our feelings, thoughts, health, career, finance, relationships, growth and much more. As humans, we love to have self-pity yet this is a ridiculous notion that has no productivity for our inner self.
Either we can take the path of a victim or get up and be victorious. Decide where it is important to spend your time, effort & energy. Would you like to spend it in on loving life or fearful life?
And when you allow laughter to take control of the way you respond to life, it permits you to focus your attention towards a loving life. Laughter fuels compassion and this in turns allows you to be at peace with yourself, your circumstances and surroundings.
“Laughter is good for thinking because when people laugh, it is easier for them to admit new ideas to their minds.” – Dalai Lama
The above article was featured in The Positive Psychology People http://www.thepositivepsychologypeople.com/laugh-into-compassion/ which was co-written with Jo-Dee Walmsley
Global Conference Speaker, Trainer & Coach on Executive Presence – Inspiring Trust & Compassion To Achieve ROI – Delivery Experience 25+ Years | Best-Selling Author®