How can science inform our view of the world and spark our practice of compassion?
One fundamental flaw in the way we live is our day-to-day view of phenomena and reality as permanent, independent, and singular.
In this frozen view of reality, we are often preoccupied with self and blind to the impact of our actions upon others.
Modern science is revealing a completely different view of reality – the incredible range of interconnectedness that actually exists within the universe.
Recognizing this interrelatedness dissolves our sense of separation and leads to greater compassion.
The practice of compassion is another form of meditation. We begin cultivating compassion for those close to us. Then we gradually widen the circle of compassion to include those toward whom we feel neutral, and eventually including those we dislike – until we have embraced the entire universe.
Sunday Reflection: Science and Spirituality
For the reflection this week, I’ve chosen the following quotation from Albert Einsein, which weaves together the views of science and spirituality.
“A human being is part of a whole, called by us the “Universe,” a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest – a kind of optical delusion is his consciousness. The delusion is a kind of prison of us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.” – from Ideas and Opinions by Albert Einstein
Exploring Science and Spirituality
If you are interested in science and spirituality, you might enjoy visiting The Mind and Life Institute.
The Institute: “…seeks to understand the human mind and the benefits of contemplative practices through an integrated mode of knowing that combines first person knowledge from the world’s contemplative traditions with methods and findings from contemporary scientific inquiry. Ultimately, our goal is to relieve human suffering and advance well-being.”
How does science inform your view of the universe? How are you widening the circle of compassion?
You might also like:
- Sunday Reflection: A Net of Brilliant Jewels
- Sunday Reflection: How Wide Is Your Love?
- Sunday Reflection: A Letter from the World of Emptiness
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