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Awake in the face of suffering

Kuan Yin. She who hears the cries of the world.


I feel compelled to speak of Kuan Yin and compassion in light of the global turmoil. It is easy to be moved by the pain and suffering of others, and to look away to avoid the pain we feel in response.

But compassion is not a feeling. It is a willingness to stay awake in the face of suffering- to stay awake and witness for others their pain. The ultimate journey of a human being is to discover how much out hearts can encompass. When we stretch in love and grief, our capacity to love and live grows each time.

We do not always have a solution to the suffering. But we can commit to witness, listen deeply and be fearlessly present with another's experience.

Do you know how to do that? Breathing, holding space and holding hands are simple ways to powerfully show up for others.

Awareness rescues us from helplessness. We find we can be helpful, kind, patient, and courageous. Full awareness leads us to divinely inspired solutions.

All suffering deserves compassion, and your own suffering is the first place to begin practicing loving awareness without looking away. Giving yourself the gift of presence is powerful medicine. Show for your own process and suffering.

There IS a witness inside you who can hold space. If you can witness it, it will be transformed and healed through your presence.

Step by step, our cultivation of loving awareness can soften and transform our hearts towards ourselves and the whole world.


Much love,


Image from the Goddess Knowledge Cards deck by Susan Seddon Boulet and Michael Babcock

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