2nd Edition, Revised Material

Compassion, Oneness and Empathy

“Thie post below is from a good friend in the Massachusetts/Vermont mountains – A timely and heartfelt plea to each of us as we celebrate these upcoming holidays.”
~ Donald L. O’Dell

So many of us are heart sick and deeply anxious on this war-torn, pandemic-stricken, unrelenting-climate-emergency planet today. it seems everywhere we look we see hate, violence, oppression, and fear giving way to action that moves us away from our moral and ethical compasses, steeping us in divisive thoughts and perceptions. Any centered alignment feels almost impossible to achieve as our senses meet and absorb disturbing assaults each day.

And yet many are so moved by all the unending mayhem because of felt compassion. Compassion for all who are suffering without alleviation. Compassion for living in uncertainty for safety, health and well-being. Compassion even for those that hate and commit volent acts from that embroiled perception. While the openness to experience compassion and empathy can be painful, it is the only act that can bring realignment with our moral and ethical compasses. Compassion leads us to investigate and question, “What is another being experiencing, in suffering that I, too, experience? How can I support the relief from that suffering for them, for me, for all of us?”

As we turn inwardly toward seeking what unites us, rather than outwardly spinning in the bombardment of what divides us, we can begin to come to center. We can inquire of ourselves each day, “What do I do, partake of. and support that is in compassion, empathy and unification.” And, further, we can ask gently, “What in my daily living do I do, participate in, and assume that is divisive, mentally dissonant and dismissive of life?” In place of taking our thought-cues and emotional hooks from social and other media posts, we can begin to self-inquire about how our personal thoughts and actions can lead with Compassion. Is what I eat, what I wear, what I use, what I support, what I say each day in alignment with compassion and my moral integrity? Does anything I engage in degrade the agency of another being on this Earth? Am I willing to undertake understanding how to bring my thoughts and actions into alignment gently step-by-step each day?

The Holiday Season in our country has upheld and promulgated such ideas as peace, connection, generosity, unity, gratitude, empathy, comradery across differences and earnest hope for a fully realized joyful world for all. Can we choose to come back to this foundational North Star of compassion in our actions - starting now in mid-November? Can we warmly welcome these values and let them guide us in all we do and all we touch? Can we carry this light of alignment with our true integrity through this winter?

Let compassion lead our actions this holiday season and beyond. In all ways, our very planet’s life itself depends on this.

Pam Y.

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