Don’t Pat Yourself On the Back Just Yet, Mother Theresa

I realized this week that compassion is a kind of arrogance. It is an assumption that one is better off than the observed other, that one is handling his or her pain so well that he or she can acknowledge that the other is not. When the pretense is stripped completely away, I understand that the compassionate urge isn’t to rescue someone from thier suffering, but to draw attention to the fact that I am above my own suffering. Every emotion, every act, every intention desires attention.

And, if we’re are all expressions of an original consciousness, a prime mover, then there can be no such thing as selflessness. If we are truly one, then we are always acting in our self-interest.

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2 Responses to Don’t Pat Yourself On the Back Just Yet, Mother Theresa

  1. me says:

    Interesting…maybe it depends on how the compassion is experienced, whether at a distance or more empathically.

  2. grizelda3 says:

    One may be tempted to split hairs between pity and compassion too. But in my opinion, whether compassion is ‘felt’ from a place of empathy or not, there’s a subtle, or maybe not so subtle, smugness. Of course, I can only base this on my own feelings, but I suspect that I’m not so different from other humans in this regard.

    Thanks for reading and commenting by the way!

    -griz

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