“Christian the Lion”is a story about true love. It illustrates the spirit of compassion, which involves concern for others’ needs. As an expression of true love, compassion knows when to let go of others while attachment holds firmly onto others.
Dalai Lama has also given instruction on this. We often confuse the emotions of compassion and attachment, mistaking one for the other. What we call compassion is true sympathy for others without any projection or expectation on our parts. But attachment is another thing. It is motivated by our desire for gaining something in return from others. It is easy for us to show good will to our close friends or family. By doing this, we get some feedback from them. But it’s difficult for us to show benevolence to our enemies because we may get nothing but hostility in return. So, what we do most often in our daily life is attachment instead of compassion. And it takes a subtle mind to distinguish between the two.