kindness

The Empty Place

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Image from Castle in the Sky.

“Respect was invented to cover the empty place where love should be.”

― Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

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Power Is Borrowed

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“If history teaches us nothing else, it is that power is borrowed. At best, power is something granted not something taken. That means, in Western democracies at any rate, that those who have power need the gifts of discernment and judgement, because if we recognize the temporary nature of power, then equally, we need to recognize what in the activity of dissent is valuable.

The principle at issue is the temporary nature of power, and the necessity of service and humility, the necessity of seeing what truth is being cried out in an act of protest.”

~ Jean Vanier, Becoming Human

Caring Community

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“This leaves us with the urgent question: How can we be or become a caring community, a community of people not trying to cover the pain or to avoid it by sophisticated bypasses, but rather share it as the source of healing and new life? It is important to realize that you cannot get a Ph.D. in caring, that caring cannot be delegated by specialists, and that therefore nobody can be excused from caring. Still, in a society like ours, we have a strong tendency to refer to specialists. When someone does not feel well, we quickly think, ‘Where can we find a doctor?’ When someone is confused, we easily advise him to go to a counselor. And when someone is dying, we quickly call a priest. Even when someone wants to pray we wonder if there is a minister around.”

~ Henri Nouwen