Intentions and Actions 4
Between twenty-five and thirty years ago I was in a conversation about non-material matters and realized that the standards ( start and stop ) I had set up to describe the way I interpreted the non-material was different from the ones he had set up. In the conversation I stated that I could not see how anyone could be selfless; even St. Francis was getting something out of what he did. In his reply, I received the concept that if I am thinking about someone else and not myself then I am selfless. What he said made sense to me. If I could remember his name, I would give him credit.
So another way to start changing an ego-centric reality is to find someone to help that I can truly feel compassion for. If I put myself in a position to be exposed to people who need help, then it is more likely that I will be around a person or persons I can care what is going on with them. When I am physically close to a person in need and am thinking that I am glad I am not in their place, then I am still more concerned about self; seeing how I am doing. I need ( notice that I use the word I a lot ) to be reaching out a hand of help to someone to where I can forget self. Personal experience has shown me that if I reach out freely instead of being paid for what I am doing then it is easier to forget self.
Two positions of employment that I have held gave me the opportunity to reach out to others and they both were fulfilling. Receiving pay for service to other people is okay as for as I am concerned.
Lord make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is discord, union;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
Grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
Francis of Assisi
* All images from google images