Compassion For Others

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Compassion for Others

Compassion is described as a “sympathetic consciousness of other’s distress together with a desire to alleviate it.”

One has to be aware of oneself and another to experience sympathy for the ‘distress’ of others, and have a desire to alleviate it.

Thriving-Baby-Boomers - Spirituality - Compassion for Others - Dalai Lama quote

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.” ~ Dalai Lama (The Art of Happiness)


All one has to do is look at the television news and see all the distress in the world, or even in one’s own community: wars, floods, wildfires, economic downturns with layoffs, homelessness and poverty.

I feel that I am basically a compassionate person. I think this comes from my years living in less-than-happy-ideal conditions. I can relate to and understand others living in similar circumstances. I can identify and experience sympathy with the abused women and children, the addicts and alcoholics and those living in poverty because I have lived it myself.

I may have a desire to alleviate their suffering and distress, but I can’t help everyone. I don’t have all the money in the world to finance all the necessary social supports that are needed: addiction treatment centres, more affordable housing, women’s and homeless shelters, and better-paying jobs for everyone. What I can offer is to show care and concern and treat each person I meet with respect and dignity no matter where I meet them on the road of life.

Thriving-Baby-Boomers - Spirituality - Compassion for Others - Compassion rock

Compassion engraved in a rock

(Source: Charter For Compassion)

I think, by nature, human beings are compassionate. I base this on seeing the best in people come out to help their fellow citizens during BC’s Wildfires of 2017, or Alberta’s Wildfires in Fort McMurray in 2016. Seeing videos of people buying fuel and water to give to total strangers as the motorists were being evacuated. Watching news reports of people travelling to help with evacuations during floods in Florida, or helping to rebuild Puerto Rico demonstrates compassion in action.

Compassion doesn’t have to be big acts. It can just be a positive thought of goodwill in passing anyone along our daily path.

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