Tibetan Buddhist teacher Pema Chödrön wrote:
"In order to have compassion for others, we have to have compassion for ourselves. In particular, to care about other people who are fearful, angry, jealous, overpowered by addictions of all kinds, arrogant, proud, miserly, selfish, mean--you name it--to have compassion and to care for these
people means not to run from the pain of finding these things in ourselves."
But why should we seek to take the counterintuitive step of embracing darkness and pain? The answer is simple: Doing so gives us access to our deep, innate wellspring of compassion. And from this compassion will naturally flow wise actions in service of others--actions undertaken not from guilt, anger, or self-righteousness but as the spontaneous outpouring of our hearts.