Jack Kornfield tells about tending to yourself and the world by caring for each other. He tells a story about a student desperate to get home to his Mom.


By tending to ourselves, we tend to the world – and vice versa. Contrary to this deeper truth of our interconnectedness, much of our world is woven on threads of fear rather than on the truth of love. By harnessing our capacity for loving kindness and compassion, we strengthen our ability to tend to the bonds that bind us – that underlying our connectedness rather than our separation.

Tending Yourself

We can first practice tending to ourselves by harnessing self-love, compassion, acceptance, and forgiveness. Negative self-talk often stands in the way of our seeing our innate divinity and worthiness; however, as we commit to mindfulness practice and meditation, we start to unravel these conditioned beliefs that keep us back from embracing ourselves with love.

Tending the World

We tend to the world through mindful action and compassionate thought; however, there is a common tendency of our human kind to project our fears and concerns onto the world around us. In doing so, we inadvertently work against the vitality and wellbeing of both our individual selves and our communities. By cultivating compassion, loving kindness, and mindfulness, we rewire our minds to better understand our deep interconnectedness and our human vulnerability, strengthening our ability to be within the presence of fear and pain in restorative, healing ways. This is how we heal both the world and ourselves.

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