I have never met anyone I consider a stranger.
—His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet
After years of attending a meditation group and hearing and reading the profound words of those who have come before me, my heart is beginning to open to the fact that we are not strangers, that we are all known to one another—connected by our common humanity, experience, suffering, and joy. I’ve walked in your shoes and you in mine.
What prevents us from thinking that way? Fear of being rejected by others? Fear of being known? Fear of accepting that we are more alike than different?
All I know is that when I can be fully present with others, known and unknown, and can reach out in kindness and compassion, I feel joy—and that feels good.