Empathy–or not?

Posted: April 24, 2014 in World On The Edge

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Have you ever been a student in a new school? On your first day at a new job? At a party where you don’t know a soul? In a relationship where your opinions are treated as inconsequential? ——Did you feel confident or overlooked?

There have been times in our lives when each of us has felt unnoticed or unappreciated. We don’t like the feeling.  Yet at times, haven’t we all overlooked someone–maybe someone we thought beneath our attention?

If we are the one who is overlooked, it would seem that we might show empathy to another in the same position. However, that often isn’t the case. We’re too busy, or too concerned with what WE want that we ignore another’s pain.

What is empathy anyway?

It’s the feeling that you understand and share another person’s experiences and emotions; the ability to share someone else’s feelings. It’s the age old Golden Rule, too. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

The keyword is DO.

Unless our empathy brings about some positive response, it’s worthless. Our understanding of others is a call to action. It’s often a call to help, or at the very least, to treat another with kindness.

Empathy is a wonderful character trait–a trait that we want to develop in ourselves— and as parents,  to develop in our children by reminding them that everyone has feelings that can be hurt.

Can you imagine what a better world we would have if everyone practiced Empathy?

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