The Heart of Good Spiritual Friends

The Heart of Good Spiritual Friends
AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty

The Buddha said, “Friendship is not half of the spiritual life, but all of it.” But what’s a good spiritual friend in the time of Covid-19? How can we show up for one another in the midst of so much hurt?

The Buddha’s formula of the four noble truths has guided me through conversations with people who are struggling, and even in conversations with myself when I am struggling. At the New York Zen Center for Contemplative Care, we use the formula as part of our training for doctors, nurses, and other medical workers. I’ve found it works beautifully, even when our methods of comfort are limited to phone calls and Zoom.

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