If you had a choice to be kind or to be right...
Choose being kind because then you will always be right.
~ Zahir Meher Homji
Being kind is just the first step.
Even though I quote my noble friend Zahir, I feel there is something much more to be said.
More than being kind is to be compassionate.
What's the difference?
An act of kindness towards another being always places an individual above another being. A hierarchy of someone higher, or powerful on one hand as a giver and the lower, and powerless recipient. This without any bad intention on the part of the kind person places a burden of gratitude upon the recipient of kindness.
The receiver often feels inferior to the kind person who usually feels superior.
To be compassionate is a virtue in which there is respect and equality.
In the case of pity and kindness there will always be inequality and often dissent.
That is why people are often angry and confused when that their kindness is often not appreciated or 'people bite the hand that feeds them'.
In being kind, one makes a choice and an effort. In being compassionate, one simply is. Thus kindness is an act, compassion is a nature.
Today on Nowruz I wish all my Parsee and Iranian friends and readers on this new year day, good health, prosperity and happiness.