Be kind to others I once took part in an exercise at a spiritual seminar. Paired up with somebody we hardly knew, or even a complete stranger, we were asked to give them a compliment. First there was a moment of silence – most of us didn’t know quite what to do. Then people began to ‘positively examine’ their partner. The first person came out with: ‘Cool shoes.’ Then it was: ‘Nice glasses.’ ‘You have beautiful eyes.’ ‘Do you know that you have an amazing smile?’ ‘I admire your courage, coming on this course on your own.’ A few minutes later, the room was filled with happy people. The entire energy had changed. Kindness doesn’t have to be difficult. It can be offering your spare bedroom to a friend (as happened to me when I lost my home – thank you, Ari and Bob!); it can be offering a smile to the cashier in the supermarket. And of course Reiki is an amazing tool for sharing kindness. An excellent book by David Hamilton, Why Kindness is Good for You, examines the most recent worldwide research into kindness and draws some amazing conclusions. Research at various universities has shown that people who do the highest number of acts of kindness also score highest in terms of personal happiness. The act of giving leads to more fulfilment than the act of receiving. And, interestingly, it is through emotional warmth that the hormone oxytocin is produced. Lining the arteries in our body, this is vital in preventing cardiovascular disease. Dr Hamilton concludes that being kind leads to health and happiness. Every day is full of opportunities to show kindness. And full of opportunities to do the opposite. This Reiki principle reminds us that the choice is ours.
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