The Strength of Kindness

You know, Dee, I’ve realized something. I used to think that to be mentally strong meant that you didn’t deviate from the plan. That you didn’t let your focus be interrupted. That you could decide what it is you wanted and stay true to that course. But you know what? I’ve changed my mind.

I know, replied Dee enigmatically. What do you think now?

I think, I told him, that the ultimate form of strength is shown in kindness. That the real art is being in life and remaining kind to yourself. That may be the hardest thing of all.

Yes, Dee says, it is.

We paused for a moment.

You know, he continued, it may be that some confuse being kind to oneself as self-indulgence but actually it’s a revolution.

A revolution? I ask.

Yes, he says. When there are so many ways to be called to complain, denigrate or despise to continue to practice kindness is really the ultimate radical act. It takes bravery to expand into kindness when it’s easier to shrink into despair.

I think you’re right, I tell him. I think you’re right.