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The affection I am speaking of has no purpose, it is not given with the intention of getting anything back. It is not a matter of feeling. In the same way we say that real compassion is without attachment. Pay attention to this point, which goes against our habitual ways of thinking. It is not this or that particular case that stirs our pity. We don't give our compassion to such and such a person by choice. We give it spontaneously, entirely, without hoping for anything in exchange. And we give it universally.


From PATH TO TRANQUILITY by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. edited by Renuka Singh. Copyright c His Holiness the Dalai Lama, 1998. Used by arrangement with Viking Penguin, a division of Penguin Putnam, Inc.

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