Friday, November 12, 2010

Understanding The True Meaning of Compassion

In life we are taught to be sympathetic to those in need or the suffering. Sympathy means to share the feelings of another, and in the dictionary it even states having compassion. When you "share" the feelings of another you are not being compassionate towards them or yourself. There is no need to take on the emotional feeling of another persons’ pain to be compassionate towards them or to care how they are feeling. Sympathy is the opposite of the true meaning of compassion.

The true meaning of compassion is to have a deep awareness of the suffering of another without the need to relieve it, feeling total appreciation for its value, all while being in a state of non-judgment.

Being compassionate seems to go against what we have been conditioned to believe. For some reason as humans we feel the need to take on the pains of another to truly understand what they are going through. There is the tendency to think if we see one suffering we must do something to help relieve it or make it better. How dare us walk past a starving child on the street and not help in some way. It is in humane of us. How can we not feel the anguish of the family down the street who just lost a family member to a tragic unexpected death?!

I ask you this, what good are you doing anyone by feeling their pain? If someone is going through pain they need light around them not more worry and misery. If you take on their pains, you are doing no one good at all. In life everything happens for a reason and we must respect that everything happened just as it should have. It has value. If it did not happen many other things, thoughts, feelings, emotions, lessons would not have followed as well. Including this one learning how to be truly compassionate.

We see the evening news and think how horrible our world is becoming. Thoughts of judgment and negativity swell up inside us because what we see on TV is so horrible and makes us feel badly. We are judging the people, situations, and events based on what we are being shown is happening in the world instead of sending love and being compassionate towards the divine plan playing out in front of us.

How can the president, the people, or god allow this to happen in the world?! Everything happens for a reason even if you do not mentally comprehend it. Right now, though your lesson from all seeing and experiencing the bad you see in the world is teaching you a lesson grander than love, you are learning to be compassionately detached. By allowing the world to unfold, as tragic as it may be, you are practicing true compassion. You have detached yourself from the pain, the emotions, and the judgment of a situation and stayed within the faith of the overall divine plan. Instead of taking on the pains and adding negativity by being truly compassionate you do not feed the situation more negativity and can allow a situation to heal quicker and service its purpose.

Being a compassionate person is not easy because we are humans and we have deep emotions and we by nature are sympathetic but if we are to heal the world we must allow it to play out as it may, or we are only adding to the misery and sinking along with it. True compassion takes practice. We need to be compassionate for ourselves and imperfections as well as others. We must realize that good and evil do exist in our world and one cannot be without the other. If we cannot have black without white or lightness without darkness then we must accept it and understand the value in it and learn from it instead of dwelling within the agony of what is inevitable. Compassion is what the meaning of true love is. If you can be compassionately detached you are shedding light on the situation instead of unneeded worry, anger, and sadness.


  1. Beatiful insight. Thank you.

    1. A wise soul once said, "light reflects and gains intensity".

  2. I learn some thing every day Thank you.

  3. I learn something everyday too! Glad to share!

  4. Confused??? Was Mother Teresa wrong? She Felt compassion, but also Took action. I feel compassion but do nothing. I think I could adopt your philosophy quite easily.

  5. She was not wrong...many are here in this time to be of service...but the main idea of the post was so people have to realize that they do not need to physically take on the pain and emotions of another to care for them...empathy is when you "feel" another's pain...compassion is when you recognize its value and know it needs to exists...doesn't mean dont help them...but it does help those who feel like they need to help everyone and have anxiety when they cant save the world and its hopeless....cause it's so not

  6. I had reiki therapy session a couple of years ago, and when I left the practioner said she wanted to give me a hug because I had the biggest heart of anyone she had ever worked on. I didn't think much of it then and can't locate her now to ask what she meant by it but I assumed she meant alot of compassion but I'm not sure. Could you give any insight to what she maybe meant.

  7. She was telling you she felt the love that emanated off you! But for you not to know what she meant means you have a lot of soul searching to need to be able to see that in yourself...and at that point once you recognize it you will shine so bright your life will change before you!