The Five Components of Compassion

 wonder what might stop you from connecting with another person’s suffering? 

Is it the thought that you will be dragged into their suffering?

Is it fear that you will be agreeing with them on some level?

Is it fear of your own bodily, felt response to their suffering?

Is it a feeling of helplessness?

Is it a feeling that you will enter into existential despair if you feel their suffering?

As a human, I feel deeply. I always have. I was always told I was ‘too sensitive’, and I saw it as a weakness. Now I see it as a gift. What a gift to feel deeply! It lets me know that I’m alive.

Like all humans, I have suffered. I have struggled against my suffering and sat with my suffering. Now, as a therapist, I sit with the suffering of others. I allow myself to feel their pain and be touched by it. I can touch their pain and know that I will survive it because I have survived my own.

It is harder for me with mass suffering. When I see images on the TV of mass suffering, I wonder how I can connect to that, allow myself to feel it and be inspired to take effective action? Somehow the action never feels enough. 

I pray regularly for all those who are suffering and for the alleviation of suffering. I find solace in prayer and seek to find a place to balance prayer and action to alleviate suffering.

If you feel safe to share, I’d love to know what stops you from connecting with another person’s suffering.

May all Beings Be At Peace

Love, Jen