Reading Archive (How To Be Helpful)

Serving Is Different From Helping And Fixing

Rachel Naomi Remen

In recent years the question how can I help? has become meaningful to many people. But perhaps there is a deeper question we might consider. Perhaps the real question is not how can I help? but how ca...

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254K reads, 61 comments

The Dalai Lama: Why I Laugh

The Dalai Lama

I have been confronted with many difficulties throughout the course of my life, and my country is going through a critical period. But I laugh often, and my laughter is contagious. When people ask me ...

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49K reads, 21 comments

Cultivating An Eagle Mind

Matthieu Ricard

Human qualities often come in clusters. Altruism, inner peace, strength, freedom, and genuine happiness thrive together like the parts of a nourishing fruit. Likewise, selfishness, animosity, and fear...

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42K reads, 8 comments

In Giving I Connect With Others

Isabel Allende

I have lived with passion and in a hurry, trying to accomplish too many things. I never had time to think about my beliefs until my 28-year-old daughter Paula fell ill. She was in a coma for a year an...

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37K reads, 32 comments

Emptiness And Compassion Go Hand In Hand

Norman Fischer

The word “emptiness” is a fair translation of shunyata, but it has the drawback of sounding negative, even despairing.  The Chinese, searching for a word that might translate shunyata...

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32K reads, 12 comments

Only Service Heals

Rachel Naomi Remen

If helping is an experience of strength, fixing is an experience of mastery and expertise. Service, on the other hand, is an experience of mystery, surrender and awe. A fixer has the illusion of being...

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29K reads, 29 comments

Spiritual Activism

Michael Singer

I'm an environmentalist and I'm very much into cars that get high mileage and don't pollute, and I see that somebody's driving a Hummer. It's a classic example, somebody's driv...

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22K reads, 7 comments

A Heart Of Warmth Is Not Something Impossible

Tenzin Palmo

What does love mean? In the West, we mistake the meaning of love; we bandy the word around all the time, from “I love ice-cream” to “I love God”. But we mistake love for desire...

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19K reads, 11 comments

Sense Of Self Is An Essential Skill Of Mind

Paul Fleischman

Many articles in the Western press have confused the Buddha’s idea of “anatta,” the absence of an eternal soul, with the idea that meditation should rid you of your ordinary sense of...

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17K reads, 9 comments

The Hardest Lesson

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

The sole purpose of life is to grow. The ultimate lesson is learning how to love and be loved unconditionally. There are millions of people on Earth who are starving. There are millions who are ho...

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13K reads, 4 comments


Vernon Kitabu Turner

The idea of marital arts was that a person who is working for the good of humanity does not develop an aggressive nature but a peaceful center, and his purpose is to defend, not to attack -- to defend...

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6K reads

Magic of Service

Bo Lozoff

When we live in harmony with the dharma, or the great natural law, everything we do is an act of service. Wherever we are, whatever we do with our time, were lightening the load of the whole planet ju...

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4K reads

Everyday Heroes

Reader Digest

Nancy Rivard lost her 54-year-old father suddenly to bladder cancer on Christmas Eve 1983. "I wondered what life was about that it could be taken from us like that," she recalls. "I began to evalua...

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4K reads


Paul Gorman & Ram Dass

Separateness and unity. How interesting that these root causes, revealed in the expereience of helping, turn out to be what most spiritual traditions define as the fundamental issue of life itself. ...

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4K reads

Well-Knotted Rope

John Templeton

There is a scene in the marvelous movie Lost Horizons, in which a group of travelers become stranded in the Himalayas. They are met miraculously by a guide who provides them with warm clothing. The...

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4K reads