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Master Guru Dev Singh used to say that the real spiritual work is to walk into any coffee shop and make sure that when you leave, everyone feels better.

Needless to say, we live in times of enormous challenges. It is enough to open any media, any social network to realize that the prevailing atmosphere is one of tremendous violence, discontent, uncertainty. I am sure that many of the people you know are going through difficult times.

It is a time in which more than ever the inner work and personal discipline of spiritual practice becomes a social responsibility. Being well with ourselves is of enormous relevance today because contributing to the world as it is with an attitude of genuine kindness, genuine compassion, genuine well-being is an enormous contribution.

My teacher GuruDev Singh used to say that the real spiritual work is to walk into any coffee shop and make sure that when you leave, everyone feels better. That means that your presence alone is a presence that inspires others and makes them feel better. That means that what you have inside you is genuine well-being.

Believe me also, this implies a very intense personal work, a very strong personal discipline. Nothing is more difficult than defeating ourselves and our great battles are, above all, against the inertia we have to return to the conditioning of our limiting beliefs and our unconstructive habits. To fight against idleness, resentment, to overcome laziness and envy. The spiritual work is none other than the constant victory over the battles of the personality.

The game of self-realization is simple and extremely complex, because you are the only player, you play against yourself, the victories are about you and the benefits or achievements are also enjoyed by you. You, in you, with you, for you and against you, every morning.

You should see how many times my mind seeks to persuade me to get up on the mat to do my meditation, or evade the ice water shower. Many, many, many, many mornings I must impose myself on my mass and yet the result in me, every morning, is the confirmation that it has been worth it.

And it is thus and only thus that in a world that is reeling and soiled by so much violence of so many kinds, I achieve the enormous success of the battle for kindness. Kindness first with myself and then cultivating the space to hold it throughout the day. Kindness, compassion, generosity are biochemical states that are cultivated with rigorous personal spiritual practice. We cannot demand what we do not have within us, nor can we demand or expect it from others if we are unable to cultivate it within ourselves.

And when you look at the world and look at the pain, you understand that cultivating inner peace, gentleness, sanity, respect, compassion, unconditional love is really more important than ever and that every day you decide to do it you will have won a small-big battle.

For today, prioritize kindness, impose it as an exercise and observe what happens around you. Go into a café and if when you leave, those present feel better, then today, you will have contributed to making this world a little less bad.

With love and kindness;

Sat Nam

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