To love is not to possess the other person or to consume all their attention and love. To love is to offer the other person joy and a balm for their suffering. This capacity is what we have to learn to cultivate.
There is a misconception that Buddhism is a religion, and that you worship Buddha. Buddhism is a practice, like yoga. You can be a Christian and practice Buddhism. I met a Catholic priest who live in a Buddhist monastery in France. He told me that Buddhism makes him a better Christian. I love that.
I wouldn’t want to be in a world without any suffering, because then there would be no compassion and understanding either. If you haven’t suffered hunger, you can’t appreciate having something to eat. If you haven’t gone through a war, you don’t know the value of peace. That is why we should not try to run away from one unpleasant thing after another. Holding our suffering, looking deeply into it, and transforming it into compassion, we find a way to happiness.
With mindfulness, the feelings that have been painful and difficult transform into something beautiful: the wondrous, healing balm of understanding and compassion.
Meditation is not to escape from society, but to come back to ourselves and see what is going on. Once there is seeing, there must be acting. With mindfulness, we know what to do and what not to do to help.
This is a very important practice. Live your daily life in a way that you never lose yourself. When you are carried away with your worries, fears, cravings, anger, and desire, you run away from yourself and you lose yourself. The practice is always to go back to oneself.