With people’s suffering does not necessarily help them

September 19th 2011
Supposing someone comes to you to confide their unhappiness. Often, they do this not so much because they want you to help them find a solution but so that you will share their state. But if you allow their suffering to take you over, you do not help them, for you become paralysed, and you risk going down with them. Do you think your sympathy and compassion can bring them peace of mind? Yes, for a time perhaps, but a short while later the complaining begins again, and this can continue for the rest of their life. They will be pleased you are always there, ready to share their suffering, but they will be none the better for it. And what state will you be in? If you want to be useful to someone, do not allow their turmoil in. Keep a clear mind, and remain peaceful and steady; this is the only way to get them out of it. You can help them only by putting up a certain amount of resistance.