Compassion Day

Image by  Christopher Michel , courtesy of Creative Commons licensing.

Image by Christopher Michel, courtesy of Creative Commons licensing.

Yesterday morning my girlfriend and I decided to try something new, so we visited the Kadampa Center, a Tibetan Buddhist center in Raleigh, NC. I have had an interest in learning more about meditation, spirituality, and Buddhism for quite some time now, and thought it would be a valuable learning experience and a positive way to expand our sense of community. Although I have spent many years consuming media about meditation and Buddhism, I felt like it was time to venture out into the world to see what I can learn from people who are experienced and knowledgable in these practices.

It turns out that we decided to visit the center on a very special day; the center held an event titled Happy Birthday His Holiness the Dalai Lama! The Dalai Lama is turning 80 today, and the center held an event to celebrate him and highlight July 6, Compassion Day. We honored the Dalai Lama by offering cards listing our acts of kindness and compassion and participated in singing Happy Birthday, a guided meditation, mantra recitation, and a brief prayer.

I hadn't been to a religious or spiritual center or event for over a decade now, and was very happy with the community I saw at Kadampa Center. At this time, we plan to continue going to see what there is to learn, and determine what gifts I possess that I can offer the community.

To celebrate today, I encourage you to visit the Compassion Day website linked above and find ways to engage in rejoicing, compassion in action, and meditation in your life.