Simply Sane

Without pursuing all the anthropological and theological nuances of self-cruelty, let me suggest something very very simple. You know what tenderness is. We all have experiences of gentleness and kindness. Think of something that makes you feel that way: perhaps being with a loved one who is suffering, or seeing a small child asleep - whatever calls forth from you a feeling of warmth and tenderness or just simple caring. Feel that feeling. You can do that almost without trying. It is a very familiar feeling, well known to you. Can you now, just for a moment, feel that way towards yourself?

from Simply Sane by Gerald May (Crossroad 1993 p.165-6)