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There are infinite possibilities for suffering to descend upon humanity and individuals, and upon all sentient beings. The Classic Stoics thought of some of these sufferings as inevitable things that we humans were powerless to control, such as the eventual death of all living things; and they thought there were some other things that we do have some control over and the power to influence and thus to avoid that suffering. It has been a great tradition of many, perhaps all, thoughtful people to eliminate the suffering of people, and other beings, that are emotionally close to them, but we can easily understand that we as individuals can expand our personal world of easing, and even totally eliminating, some suffering beyond our close-in personal world.

To make this expanded circle of personal kindness does take some personal effort, and it is in the nature of things that, as Isaac Newton discovered, there is no action without some kind of equal and opposite reaction. That reaction to our kindness comes to us in the form of hope of kindness. A small kindness brings a small response in hope, and a larger one a larger response, and with each additional bit of kindness there is a bounty of hope.


We find unbounded hope by being infinitely kind, and by:

4. —becoming known to everyone as dedicating our wisdom and energy to alleviating the suffering of all beings.


Idea 4 is one of the attractor goals that we may strive to make into a habit that arises instantly when we see that there is some suffering that is being endured by a conscious being and doing all we can to alleviate that suffering. And, whenever possible, to anticipate beings moving toward situations that will bring them into a state of suffering and make visible to them alternate paths that will lead them away from that suffering.

For us as individuals to be known as ones who are dedicating our wisdom and energy to alleviating the suffering of all beings provides a model for others to follow in that kindly path. Our actions bring the alleviation of suffering elsewhere in the world that is totally beyond our ability to know about or influence. An observed kind act may influence someone in the distant future to do a kindness that they might not have done without your by then obscure act.

The observed kind act is based on a loving emotion, but the feeling dies with the person, but the observed kindness becomes part of the ever-evolving ever kinder world.