Stephen Batchelor, Buddhism Without Beliefs:

I find myself moved by the plight of those I do not know and probably never will: the hungry child, the abandoned dog, the streams of refugees. Or my world is suddenly transfigured by the smile of an old woman on a park bench. And when I finally run into S and he tells me how scared he’s been telling anyone he’s HIV positive, all the resentment vanishes and his grief and terror become mine too.

For as long as these fragile moments last, I inhabit a world where all living things are united by their yearning to survive and be unharmed. I recognize the anguish of others not as theirs but as ours. It is as though the whole of life has been revealed as a single organism.

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