behavior marked by ethical characteristics, a pleasant disposition, and concern for others
(Redirected from Kindliness)

Kindness refers to actions and behavior marked by concern for others welfare, comfort and happiness. It is embraced as a vitally important ethical virtue in most societies, religions, philosophies and cultures.

Do not turn your face away from anyone who is poor, and the face of God will not be turned away from you. ~ Tobit

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  • No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.
    • Aesop. The Lion and the Mouse.
Shall we make a new rule of life from tonight: always to try to be a little kinder than is necessary? ~ J. M. Barrie
  • I would help others out of a fellow-feeling.
    • Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy (1621), Democritus to the Reader.
  • Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.
    • Leo Buscaglia, quoted in Words from the Wise : Over 6,000 of the Smartest Things Ever Said (2007) by Rosemarie Jarski.
  • You can get much farther with a kind word and a gun than you can with a kind word alone.
    • Al Capone, as quoted in Forbes (6 October 1986).
  • Sed tamen difficile dictu est, quantopere conciliat animos hominum comitas affabilitasque sermonis.
    • It is difficult to tell how much men's minds are conciliated by a kind manner and gentle speech.
    • Cicero, De Officiis (44 CE), II. 14.
  • Life is made up, not of great sacrifices or duties, but of little things, in which smiles and kindnesses and small obligations, given habitually, are what win and preserve the heart, and secure comfort.
    • Sir Humphry Davy, reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 363.
  • So my heart advice will be to really be kind-hearted, to be a good hearted person. Whether you are Buddhist or not – there is really no need for me to convince anyone to become a Buddhist. If your mind is very pure and always has positive thinking, this is good – try not to ever go into the side of negative thinking! For example, if you find that someone looks at you and you think “Do they mean something bad to me? Do they think something bad about me?” Don’t even go into that! Just smile back. Just be pure. As pure as you can. Your heart should be pure and really open to everyone. So smile back at people that you think might not like you. This is something that you have, that’s possible. We can all totally be a kind hearted person with positive thinking and pure heart. Everyone is able to do that, whether you are Buddhist or not. This is my heart advice."
  • The ideals that have lighted my way, and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Kindness, Beauty, and Truth. Without the sense of kinship with men of like mind, without the occupation with the objective world, the eternally unattainable in the field of art and scientific endeavours, life would have seemed empty to me. The trite objects of human efforts - possessions, outward success, luxury - have always seemed to me contemptible.
  • Their cause I plead — plead it in heart and mind;
    A fellow-feeling makes one wondrous kind.
  • I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good, therefore, that I can do or any kindness I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it for I shall not pass this way again.
    • Attributed to Stephen Grellet , variants of this have been been widely circulated as a Quaker saying since at least 1869, and attributed Grellet since at least 1893. W. Gurney Benham in Benham's Book of Quotations, Proverbs, and Household Words (1907) states that though sometimes attributed to others, "there seems to be some authority in favor of Stephen Grellet being the author, but the passage does not appear in any of his printed works." It appears to have been published as an anonymous proverb at least as early as 1859, when it appeared in Household Words : A Weekly Journal.
    • Variant: I expect to pass through this life but once. If therefore there be any kindnesses I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow beings, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.
      • Attributed to Anna B. Hegeman, as reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 362.
  • The family, the state, the entire world: they are all aggregations of individuals, and if each individual simply lived and acted according to pure-hearted kindness – that is, with a spirit of independence and freedom, the will to help the weak, and caring for one’s neighbor – we would all be able to live a peaceful and perfect collective life. We human beings should develop our spirit of independence and solidarity and fight against those who oppose this, even at the risk of our own lives.
  • Whether one believes in a religion or not, and whether one believes in rebirth or not, there isn't anyone who doesn't appreciate kindness and compassion.
  • This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.
  • It is a little embarrassing that after forty-five years of research and study, the best advice I can give people is to be a little kinder to each other
  • And if you ask what is the temper which is most fitted to be victorious over sin on earth, I answer that in it the warp of a sunny gentleness must be woven across the woof of a strong character. That will make the best tissue to stand the wear and tear of the world's trials. Our Lord was divinely gentle, but He was also strong with a wondrous strength and firmness.
    • W. H. Littleton, reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 255.
  • The greater the kindred is, the lesse the kindnesse must bee.
    • John Lyly, Mother Bombie (published 1594), Act III, scene 1.
  • Seek to mingle gentleness in all your rebukes; bear with the infirmities of others; make allowance for constitutional frailties; never say harsh things, if kind things will do as well.
    • J. R. MacDuff, reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 256.
  • Just because an animal is large, it doesn't mean he doesn't want kindness; however big Tigger seems to be, remember that he wants as much kindness as Roo.
  • Therefore, seeing that we are to receive a Kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us continue to receive undeserved kindness, through which we may acceptably offer God sacred service with godly fear and awe.
  • وَإِذْ أَ َذْنَا مِيثَاقَ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ لاَ تَعْبُدُونَ إِلاَّ اللّهَ وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَاناً وَذِي الْقُرْبَى وَالْيَتَامَى وَالْمَسَاكِينِ وَقُولُواْ لِلنَّاسِ حُسْناً وَأَقِيمُواْ الصَّلاَةَ وَآتُواْ الزَّكَاةَ ثُمَّ تَوَلَّيْتُمْ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً مِّنكُمْ وَأَنتُم مِّعْرِضُونَ
    • And (remember) when We made a covenant with the Children of Israel, (saying): Worship none save Allah (only), and be good to parents and to kindred and to orphans and the needy, and speak kindly to mankind; and establish worship and pay the poor-due. Then, after that, ye slid back, save a few of you, being averse.
    • And when We took compact with the Children of Israel: You shall not serve any save God; and to be good to parents, and the near kinsman, and to orphans, and to the needy; and speak good to men, and perform the prayer, and pay the alms. ́ Then you turned away, all but a few of you, swerving aside.
  • We cannot be too gentle, too kind. Shun even to appear harsh in your treatment of each other. Joy, radiant joy, streams from the face of one who gives and kindles joy in the heart of one who receives. All condemnation is from the devil. Never condemn each other, not even those whom you catch committing an evil deed. We condemn others only because we shun knowing ourselves. When we gaze at our own failings, we see such a morass of filth that nothing in another can equal it. That is why we turn away, and make much of the faults of others. Keep away from the spilling of speech. Instead of condemning others, strive to reach inner peace. Keep silent, refrain from judgement. This will raise you above the deadly arrows of slander, insult, outrage, and will shield your glowing hearts against the evil that creeps around.
  • When your head did but ache,
    I knit my handkerchief about your brows,
    The best I had, a princess wrought it me,
    And I did never ask it you again;
    And with my hand at midnight held your head,
    And, like the watchful minutes to the hour,
    Still and anon cheer'd up the heavy time,
    Saying, "What lack you?" and, "Where lies your grief?"
  • Yet do I fear thy nature;
    It is too full o' the milk of human kindness.
  • the tender gravity of kindness
  • Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
    you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
  • For kindness begets kindness evermore,
    But he from whose mind fades the memory
    Of benefits, noble is he no more.
  • A life of kindness is the primary meaning of divine worship.
  • Deeds of kindness are equal in weight to all the commandments.
  • Give alms from your possessions, and do not let your eye begrudge the gift when you make it. Do not turn your face away from anyone who is poor, and the face of God will not be turned away from you.
  • On that best portion of a good man's life,
    His little, nameless, unremembered acts
    Of kindness and of love.

Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations

Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 415-16.
  • Have you had a kindness shown?
    Pass it on;
    'Twas not given for thee alone,
    Pass it on;
    Let it travel down the years,
    Let it wipe another's tears,
    'Till in Heaven the deed appears—
    Pass it on.
  • And Heaven, that every virtue bears in mind,
    E'en to the ashes of the just is kind.
    • Homer, The Iliad, Book XXIV, line 523. Pope's translation.
  • There's no dearth of kindness
    In this world of ours;
    Only in our blindness
    We gather thorns for flowers.
  • Colubram sustulit
    Sinuque fovet, contra se ipse misericors.
    • He carried and nourished in his breast a snake, tender-hearted against his own interest.
    • Phaedrus, Fables, Book IV. 18.
  • Sociis atque amicis auxilia portabant Romani, magisque dandis quam accipiundis beneficiis amicitias parabant.
    • The Romans assisted their allies and friends, and acquired friendships by giving rather than receiving kindness.
    • Sallust, Catilina, VI.
  • Ubicumque homo est, ibi beneficio locus est.
  • Bis gratum est, quod dato opus est, ultro si offeras.
    • If what must be given is given willingly the kindness is doubled.
    • Syrus, Maxims.
  • Pars beneficii est, quod petitur, si cito neges.
    • It is kindness immediately to refuse what you intend to deny.
    • Syrus, Maxims.

See also

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AltruismAsceticismBeneficenceBenevolenceBraveryCarefulnessCharityCheerfulnessCleanlinessCommon senseCompassionConstancyCourageDignityDiligenceDiscretionEarnestnessFaithFidelityForethoughtForgivenessFriendshipFrugalityGentlenessGoodnessGraceGratitudeHolinessHonestyHonorHopeHospitalityHumanityHumilityIntegrityIntelligenceJusticeKindnessLoveLoyaltyMercyModerationModestyOptimismPatiencePhilanthropyPietyPrudencePunctualityPovertyPuritySelf-controlSimplicitySinceritySobrietySympathyTemperanceTolerance

AggressionAngerApathyArroganceBigotryContemptCowardiceCrueltyDishonestyDrunkennessEgotismEnvyEvil speakingGluttonyGreedHatredHypocrisyIdlenessIgnoranceImpatienceImpenitenceIngratitudeInhumanityIntemperanceJealousyLazinessLustMaliceNeglectObstinacyPhilistinismPrejudicePretensionPrideRecklessnessSelf-righteousnessSelfishnessSuperficialityTryphéUnkindnessUsuryVanityWorldliness