Kindness Hacks from Devarim
Moshe is speaking to the people before his death, reviewing the events and experiences that they had encountered during their years in the desert ‘...and you said, because the Almighty hated us he took us out of Egypt.....’ Devarim 1:27
Hashem hated them? How could this be?!
Rashi comments, that really Hashem loved the people, but because they felt hatred towards Him they mistakenly felt that He hated them! Cites Rashi ‘What you feel about someone else, you assume he feels about you’ (Sifsai Chachamim). Hashem did not hate His people at all, the people had projected their own feelings, and assumed very wrongly!
A fascinating insight into human psychology.
If we feel negatively towards others, we assume that that’s how they must be feeling about us! This can result in feud based on nothing more than our own thoughts! On the flipside, this means that if you feel love and compassion towards others, you will also assume that others feel positively about you.
Taking this a step further...
Our thoughts dictate our actions, and our actions towards others influence how they will act towards us. For example, if we feel positively towards someone (thought), then we may smile, and show them that we care about them (action). This will increase their positive feelings towards us, which in turn will motivate them to respond with kind actions (influenced response).
Hatred fuels hatred, but love fuels love.
If we as individuals work on projecting love and positivity, then people will respond in kind, creating a harmonious and peaceful society, reflecting and bouncing the values of kindness and giving off of each other.
"If there be among you a needy person, one of your brethren… you must not harden your heart, nor shut your hand from your poor brother. But you shall open your hand wide to him"