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Being Compassionate

The Dalia Lama argues that being a compassionate person does not happen overnight. It takes years of dedication and practice. He states in his essay “The Ethic if Compassion” that “the potential we have to develop it is therefore stable and continuous,” (289). In other words, we have the ability to learn these skills over time. “It is not a resource we can used up – as water is used up when we boil it,” the Dalia Lama says (289). We cannot run out of compassion but we have the ability to use it or not. We cannot be compassionate to only our friends and family, but also to everyone, we meet. The more we are compassionate to others, the more we have happiness for ourselves. The Dalia Lama wants us to have compassion everywhere we go and do. When we lose compassion, our actions can become destructive. The Dalia Lama says we will suffer along the way but this is normal. When we benefit others, we find a way to find hope and confidence in ourselves. Sometimes we have to suffer with others but that is ok according to the Dalia Lama. This shows the inner strength of you by suffering with others. What the Dalia Lama means here is that when you suffer with another person, you are showing compassion and in return, it shows you are a strong person. The Dalia Lama wants us to love others may not be easy but you must love them anyways. This is how the Dalia Lama wants us to show and have compassion towards others. It also does not come easy or overnight.

Being a compassionate person does not come easy nor can it be achieved in a short time period. It takes time and dedication to become a compassionate person. You have to learn how to look at situations differently. These skills can be learned over time and with dedication. You have to be willing to take the challenge day by day. When you show compassion, it comes through loving others, suffering with them, taking time out of your day to help them, and putting yourself second. I agree with the Dalia Lama’s agreement that being a compassionate person takes time and dedication. Becoming a compassionate person you have to put yourself second and others first. You have to suffer with others so you can see what they are going through. You are putting yourself in their shoes for a short period and setting aside your life.

Everyone goes through trials throughout their life. It is very nice when others want to help and feel your pain. This is an example of showing compassion. They want to be compassionate toward your pain. This past week I was telling a story about my brothers when they got into a car accident and my friends and family were trying to show compassion. My brothers were in a car accident on their way to Rock Valley College. They stopped at a red light and a red Dodge sideswiped my brother’s car. My brothers said, “I hope they didn’t hit us, but it sounded close”. My brother’s car moved forward and at that moment, they realized someone just hit them. They pulled over into a parking lot, and so did the other car. They got out and it was an old woman who was driving the other car. They looked at the damage on both cars and took pictures. They exchanged information. The police came and filled out an accident report. My brother’s car ended up with a broken tail light and a messed up rear bumper. The other car has a lot of body damage on the passenger side. They left and went to school and missed most of their first class of the day. When I tell this story to my friends and family, I notice that they are trying to feel compassionate for my brothers, the elder woman, and the situation. I believe some people really are compassionate toward them but also some people are kind of trying. They like my brothers but they just do not know how to show compassion. People in general want to feel compassionate but like the Dalia Lama says, you have to practice and it takes time to achieve these skills. People have trials that they go through and they need people by their side for comfort.

A characteristic of a compassionate person is to feel the persons suffering. It takes a strong person to put himself or herself at the same level as another person who is suffering in a situation. This can be when a family member dies and a friend of yours is there to comfort you and help you through the death of a loved one. Dedication is required to achieve this type of compassion. I would consider this a skill that someone can learn over a long period. It starts with love, kindness, compassion, and to be able to understand others and there situations.

Showing compassion to others is also helping you in your own life. Showing compassion can be as simple as opening a door for a stranger, paying for the food for the person behind you in the drive through or checkout line, and the list continues. Showing compassion is not hard it just takes dedication and some time. Whenever I am at school or out shopping if I see a person coming in the door behind me I will hold it open for them and smile. Sometimes the person will respond with a Thank You and others give me a weird look. Must of the people that I see go through the door are appreciative of my compassion that I show toward them. I want to help others feel important or happy at this point because I know everyone has hard times that they are dealing with. Showing compassion does not have to be hard and you help out yourself along the way.

Some people may think they can become a compassionate person overnight or you can turn your compassion on towards others depending on the person or situation. I believe they are wrong. Why you may ask. From personal experience I know and see people that are compassionate and not so compassionate. The people that I know are compassionate are always compassionate no matter the situation, the person, or the outcome. I have seen them on their good days and bad days. I also know a few not so compassionate people that try to some compassion sometimes. It look at the situation and see if it will benefit them in anyway or see who is watching before they will help or show compassion in some way. You can tell they are faking it most of the time. They act fake in of the person and in front of others about being compassionate toward them but as soon as they leave they ignore or make fun of the situation or person. Therefore, this is why I believe it takes time and dedication to become a compassionate person.

Compassion is a hard skill to learn but it is possible. Being compassionate to others involves feeling others pain and suffering, loving and caring to one another no matter the situation. By showing compassion toward others, we are helping ourselves without realizing it. We are happier, at peace, and filled with joy. Our stress will also be less. When we help others, in return we are helping ourselves.

compassionate | think about it | family


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