On Sunday 31 March, Sis. Paruadi Ramasamy gave a talk on how to develop a respectful attitude. Respect is positively correlated to humility, contentment and gratitude. When developed with right understanding, these four qualities help us achieve harmony and tranquility within ourselves and the wider community.
We can start by simply being sensitive and sensible with people and things around us. When we are judgmental, dominant and conceited, we develop irrational thinking and an easily irritated character. Instead, we should train our minds to be contented and reflective as taught by the Buddha in the Vitakkasanthana Sutta (MN 20) – Relaxation of Thoughts.
When unskillful thoughts arise, we reflect on its drawbacks and not give them any attention so that they subside. Concurrently, we earnestly replace it with skillful thoughts.
One who bears a respectful mindset is free from remorse and vanity. This practice ennobles our character, as well as helps us to develop social and cultural sensitivity. May we constantly be observant of our own actions and motivations as we cultivate respect as a core value.