Nangten Menlang - Buddhist Medical Center

Joanah - September 26, 2010

Beloved teacher,

I´m a person who´s trying to find his heart and way.Since I was a little girl my main purpose has been helping people in need because that´s what makes me feel fulfilled.But lately I have been in conflict...I´ve been thinking about the significance of the feeling compassion.I help others because it makes me feel happy. So I do it with some interest, not just to help others but also to help me. My question is if I do it because it makes me feel fulfilled, so it`s not a uninterested act. My feeling of compassion is just a selfish compassion? Or is it steel sincere?

Response from Tulku Lobsang:

The goal of practicing love and compassion is to make you happy, because for you to be happy is the most important thing. When you are happy, at least you don't harm anyone else. Therefore, it is not wrong for you to help others because you want to be happy. That is right. We need to be happy. This is the most important thing. But the problem is that we don't know how to be happy. To help others is the only way to change ourselves. It is the only way to make us happy. Helping is what makes you happy. But don't expect anything more than just that you help. Helping itself is what makes you happy. The possibility for helping them is your happiness. There is no more. Therefore, don't expect more after you help. If you expect something more, than this is not compassion. This will become pain. You create pain for yourself and you create pain for others. We have the absolute right to make ourselves happy. The problem is that we don't know how to do it. Helping others is the best way to make us happy. Sometimes our Buddhist teachings say that we need both and Buddha and sentient beings on the spiritual path. With Buddha and holy beings we practice devotion. Devotion is the way to make our mind more clear and clean. The mind becomes more pure. And helping others is the way to transform our negative mind to become more positive. So don't need feel guilty for doing this.

~Tulku Lobsang

Answered on October 9, 2010
Joshua Tree, California, USA