The first step in Aathma vichaara (enquiring about the Self) is
the practice of the truth that whatever gives you pain gives pain to
others and whatever gives you joy, gives joy to others. So do unto
others as you would like them to do unto you; desist from any act in
relation to others which if done by them will give you pain. Thus, a
kind of reciprocal relationship will grow between you and others and
gradually you reach the stage when your heart thrills with joy when
others are joyful and shudders in pain when others are sad.
This is not the kind of affection towards those who are dear to you or those
who are your kith and kin. That is a sign of delusion; but this
sharing of joy and grief is automatic, immediate, universal. It is a
sign of great spiritual advance; then the wave knows that it is part
of the ocean and that all waves are but temporary manifestations of
the self-same sea having the same taste as the ocean itself.
The others are part of yourself; you need not worry about
them; worry about yourself; that is enough; when you become all
right, they too will be all right, for you will no longer be aware of
them as separate from you. Criticising others, finding fault with
them, all this comes out of egoism. Search for your own faults
instead; the faults you see in others are your own faults instead; the
faults you see in others are but reflections of your own personality
traits; pay no heed to little worries; attach your mind to the Lord.
Then you will be led on to the company of good men and your
talents will be transmuted.