HEALING THROUGH ACTS OF KINDNESS

        Every known spiritual tradition acknowledges the benefits of performing acts of loving kindness. They reflect the compassionate element of the cosmos. The Kabbalistic Tree of Life describes tifferet  or rachamin as the central sephria or axis point of the entire system. These qualities are present within all of us since we are the cosmos incarnate.
        In certain spiritual traditions we assure ourselves a place in Heaven by the performance of such deeds. In other traditions the acts themselves generate instant karma which will come back to us in this life or subsequent lives.  This is cosmic justice, the ultimate balance.
        Anthropologists might point to an inherent altruism within human beings as having evolved in order to nurture small tribal units.  Purely self-centered activities would not have benefited the group and since survival required cooperation, altruistic traits would be selected for.
        We have also evolved in order to acutely ‘read’ the emotions of others. Our actions, speech, behavior can be sensitively mirrored in their reactions to us. Strong bonds of love and friendship based upon mutual consideration and the performance of unsolicited acts of kindness and compassion produced cooperation and support in times of trouble.
        We are acutely aware of individuals who seem oblivious to the subtleties of interpersonal relationships. Individuals with a form of Asperger’s Syndrome, considered to be a variant of autism,  are incapable of reading these social cues and are guilty of infractions of social intercourse.  They may inadvertently insult and offend others with their apparent insensitivity.
        The performance of acts of kindness, ranging from holding a door for a stranger, allowing their car to enter a line of traffic, assisting someone struggling with packages, offering an unsolicited smile or comment–all create an openness and warmth with heals both parties. The usual barriers of self-defense can easily melt.  In a world of fear, loneliness separation and distrust, the simple performance of such acts is a spiritual and metaphysical balm of healing.
        Kabbalists understand that we heal ourselves by healing others. It is through the performance of such deeds of loving kindness that we all evolve.

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