Self-Transformation Series:
Issue No. 31


The Magic of Kindness


Table of Contents

I. Why Important

II. The Elements of Kindness

III. Ways of Expressing Kindness

    1. Effectiveness in Relationship
    2. In Giving Feedback to Others
    3. In Teaching Children
    4. In asking favors
    5. In Soothing Pain and Suffering
    6. In discussing and arguing
    7. In Conflict Resolution

IV. Kindness and Inner Strength

IV. Kindness and Spirituality

QUOTATIONS:


I. Why Important

Kindness makes life and relationships more pleasant. Amidst difficulties and adversities, kindness is the cushion that smoothens the roughness of the journey. It is the oil that soothes pain. It is the water that helps souls grow luxuriantly into mature well-balanced individuals.

Without kindness, life is often a struggle, a defense, a competition or a fight. There is no warmth and no love. Kindness is the antidote to the epidemic of hate.

Kindness is an indicator of inner strength, for it is the people who are afraid who need to look tough.

II. The Elements of Kindness

Kindness is characterized by certain qualities:

Courteousness ó its language is polite, and its manner courteous; it never forgets to say "Please." "Excuse me." "Iím sorry," or "Thank you."

III. Ways of Expressing Kindness

1. Effectiveness in Relationship

How often have we refused to deal with someone simply because of the other personís attitude or roughness. On the other hand, how often have we met kind people whom we find pleasure in dealing with him or her.

Kindness is a magic ingredient that makes people like to deal with you and to respect you. It is a deterrent against deception and treachery.

Three-fourths of the people you will meet tomorrow are hungering amid thirsting sympathy. Give it to them, and they will love you. DALE CARNEGIE

Kindness ó a language which the dumb can speak, and the deaf can understand C.N. BOVEE

2. In Giving Feedback to Others

Many times we need to give feedback to someone, either a family member, a co-worker, a friend or a public official. Without kindness, the feedback becomes criticism or faultfinding or reproach, and the result is that the other person tends to refuse to listen.

When, however, a feedback is motivated by sympathy and love, the other person will sense this and will be more inclined to truly listen to the criticism, and to correct the shortcoming

The only to speak the truth is to speak lovingly. HENRY DAVID THOREAU

Kind words are the music of the world. They have a power which seems to be beyond natural causes, as if they were some angelís song which had lost its way and come on earth. It seems as if they could almost do what to rality God alone can do ó soften the hard and angry hearts of men. No one was ever corrected by a sarcasm ó crushed, perhaps, if the sarcasm was clever enough, but drawn nearer to God, never. -- W.F. FABER

3. In Teaching Children

Raising children can be likened to growing trees. Expose them early to violent typhoons, they grow up hard but bent and crooked. Expose them to warm sunshine, fresh water, and gentle wind, and they grow up straight, pliable and luxuriant.

Children grow best in an atmosphere of loving kindness. They in turn become sensitive and considerate

Kindness is the sunshine in which virtue grows. ROBERT G. INGERSOLL

4. In asking favors

How many times have been asked to do small things by strangers, and you feel glad to grant it just because they asked it so nicely?

By a sweet tongue and kindness, you can drag an elephant with a hair.

PERSIAN PROVERB

5. In Soothing Pain and Suffering

Kindness is compassionate. It feels for others. Acts of kindness makes pain more bearable. It can lessen suffering.

One kind word can warm three winter months JAPANESE PROVERB

Ninety per cent of all mental illness that comes before me could have been prevented, or cured by ordinary kindness. DR. WILLIAM MCGRATH

6. In discussing and arguing

A discussion is not productive when each one is out to prove the other wrong. Kindness on the other hand makes us willing to see the truth in the other personís views.

A gentleman is a man who can disagree without being disagreeable. AUTHOR UNKNOWN

7. In Conflict Resolution

Life is full of conflicts with people. Hostility merely worsens the situation. But kindness heals wounds. If someone is angry at you, show your thoughtfulness by a word or a deed. Few people will not soften by genuine kindness. Genuinely think of the welfare of the other person, and you will be surprised that you have gained a friend.

The fine and noble way to destroy a foe, is not to kill him: with kindness you may so change him that he shall cease to be so: then heís slain. ALEYN

IV Kindness and Inner Strength

Some people have the misimpression that to be kind is to be weak. But real kindness is not weakness. Only pretended kindness is weakness, Real kindness emanates from a virtue, which is love or compassion, while pretended kindness emanates from fear.

Real kindness therefore is not afraid to be firm or to say no, if such firmness or denial will be for the good of the other person. A parent who loves his child will be kind but firm in his discipline, while a parent who fears the loss of his childís affection may use pretended kindness to bribe the child.

Nothing is so strong as gentleness. Nothing is so gentle as real strength.

FRANCIS DE SALES

V. Kindness and Spirituality

Kindness being rooted in compassion, it is a quality that nurtures selflessness and a greater awareness of unity. These are the steppingstones to true spirituality.

Life is short and we have not too much time for gladdenng the hearts of those who are traveling the dark way with us. Oh, be swift to love! Make haste to be kind! -- HENRI F. AMIEL


QUOTATIONS:

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. -- Aesop

A good deed is never lost. He who sows courtesy, reaps friendship; he who plants kindness, gathers love; pleasure bestowed upon a grateful mind was never sterile, but generally gratitude begets reward. -- Basil

I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good work, therefore, any kindness, or any service I can render to any soul of man or animal, let me do it now! Let me not neglect or defer it, for I shall not pass this way again. -- Thomas Carlyle

Kindness is the kingpin of success in life, it is the prime factor in overcoming friction and making the human machinery run smoothly. -- Andrew Chapman

What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness. -- Jean Jacques Rousseau

It is a good and safe rule to sojourn in every place as if you meant to spend your life there; never omitting an opportunity of doing a kindness; or speaking a true word; or making a friend. -- John Ruskin

Kindness has more power than compulsion. -- Author Unknown

Whenever there is a human being there is an opportunity for kindness. -- Author Unknown

The best parts of a good manís life are his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and love. William Wordsworth

Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love. Lao -tzu

Wise sayings often fall on barren ground; but a kind word is never thrown away. -- Sir Arthur Helps

To be able to practice five things everywhere under heaven constitutes perfect virtue. . . . [They are] gravity, generosity of soul, sincerity, earnestness, and kindness. -- Confucius

The Confucian Analects. 17:6

Better be kind at home than burn incense in a far place. -- Mencius

Courtesy is the go-power behind all teamwork -- it works wonders. -- Author Unknown

What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness. -- Jean Jacques Rousseau

Any good we can do, or any kindness that we can show to any fellow creature, let us do it now for we shall not pass this way again. -- Stephen Shellet

Whenever there is a human being there is an opportunity for kindness. -- Author Unknown

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Copyright 1995. Permission to reprint is granted provided acknowledgment is made to:
Peace Center
Theosophical Society in the Philippines, 1 Iba St., Quezon City, Philippines
E-mail: tspeace@info.com.ph

"If five percent of the people work for peace, there will be peace."