Somehow I had been taught to fear genuine kindness…

gentle, kind, big dog-bunny

“Gentleness may have been the first thing I noticed about Joe…I may have noticed his size at about the same time: though he is by no means an enormous man, he was the tallest person in our training, and one of the few men.  Though I believe that he is gentle by nature, I get the sense that he also carefully cultivates gentleness, probably in part to compensate for a tendency to seem imposing.  The intensity of his focus, his fierce intelligence, and his penetrating insight may have contributed to an all-around sense of intimidation, were it not for his warm heart and gentle approach…Joe’s equanimity and gentleness were part of what made me so suspicious.  I felt I was being lulled into something, perhaps made to accept some kind of touchy-feely, New Age pabulum. (Only much later would it occur to me, with a painful shock: somehow I had been taught to fear genuine kindness, to be suspicious of sentiment, to believe that if it wasn’t genuine poetry, it wasn’t genuine feeling.  When, I wondered, did I become so infected with irony that I couldn’t receive uncomplicated love?) With time, though, I recognized that Joe epitomized the first rule of Rubenfeld Synergy Method: gentleness.  Approaching our clients this way also communicates a deep kind of attention: when we are being gentle, we are listening, and leaving space for the client’s truth to emerge.”

~ Kamela Dolinova, Gentleness: the first word in our work



  1. Alex Jones says:

    Inspirational image.


  2. Interesting to think about, David. I am always deeply affected by people who are gentle–it’s an attribute that really hits me, more than, say, joviality or power. Hmmm….


  3. Very inspirational indeed..


  4. Perhaps the world is only short on visible gentleness, as it’s so often treated as a weakness rather than an attribute. It probably exists deep inside a lot more people than we realise, but they are just afraid to express it in case they’re sneered at or stamped on.

    I love the dog and the bunny illustration. One of the gentlest dogs I know is a ginormous rottweiller called Diesel. He always looks so surprised and hurt when a toy dog disapproves of him 🙂


  5. Kill them with kindness…….empathy is a great tool as well. But sometimes there are just genuinely kind people who want nothing more than to help you be better.


  6. And I LOVE the picture!


  7. so deep..Gentleness, kindness should be in everbody’s heart..Thank you:)


  8. Thanks for the reblog, David, and I love the image, too!


  9. lindadonz says:

    Not just clients–spouse, children. Everyone needs kindness and gentleness first.


  10. Reblogged this on LifeRevelation and commented:
    Gentleness is not something that came naturally to me…and some would probably say it hasn’t come at all…but this is wonderful post to learn from…thank you all for taking the time to read it…and thank you David for posting it…be encouraged!


  11. I LOVE this post!!! I’ve thought about this a lot lately. I’ve met several people who grow suspicious around goodness and gentleness. How awful it must be to be so cynical. Then I usually come to the conclusion that being cynical is a form of protection. When we choose to distrust everything around us it’s because we’ve been hurt. Eventually we don’t allow ourselves to feel, we unplug from our feelings and instead decide to only use our cognitive self to interpret the world. When that happens we’re unable to experience gentleness, kindness, goodness, etc. when it’s right in front of us.

    I think I’d rather risk getting hurt than give up experiencing those qualities in others.
    Great post. I love that Dog and bunny. So gentle 😉


    • Thank you and welcome. Yes, the Amygdala starts the alarm bells as we don’t often see legitimate goodness and gentleness and the protective defenses go up. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.


  12. Wonderful, David; and so true. Gentleness allows us to behave in kind… It takes us inward to our heart centre; so to speak.
    That was lovely to read. Thank You…..


  13. That is so beautiful. I think it’s true, in our world, I have found many times that people are very suspicious of genuine kindness and gentleness. However, as I have dropped my own suspicions that I didn’t even realize I had… and understand that when I am genuine, it doesn’t mean I’m perfect… that others are less suspicious of those outside of them offering genuine and truly unconditional acceptance.

    That is a great image at the top too.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Have a great night,


  14. Reblogged this on sinzianacomanici and commented:


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  1. […] “Gentleness may have been the first thing I noticed about Joe…I may have noticed his size at about the same time: though he is by no means an enormous man, he was the tallest person in our training, and one of the few men.  Though I believe that he…  […]


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