Sunday, May 15

Cultivating Compassion

Off topic today, but close to my heart nonetheless.

"Compassion is universally revered and universally ignored" Deepak Chopra

When I was about nine years old I had a minor accident while roller skating. I lost balance and fell on my tailbone. Hard. I still remember the biting pain that shot up my spine. There were two boys about my age who had watched me fall and I sort of half expected them to help me up. But when I looked up they were doubled over in laughter! I didn't know which hurt most -- my backside or my sensitive soul.
From that day forward I promised myself to never laugh at another's misfortune, to never gloat, backstab or be hateful in any way. Instead I was going to be compassionate.
It wasn't always easy. One needs to practice to become so. Compassion is closely related to love and requires one to open one's heart completely. Sadly, compassion is seen as a weakness nowadays, not a fit platform for anyone aiming to reach the highest rung on the corporate (or political) ladder. However, in its absence societies will become more negative, more aggressive and hostile than they already are! Being compassionate takes courage.

"The essence of compassion and love is understanding, the ability to recognize the physical, material and psychological suffering of others" ..." by listening with calm and understanding we can ease the suffering of another person" Thich Nhat Hanh

I truly believe that by cultivating compassion we can create a more healthy and sane world to live in - and isn't that what we all want for us and future generations?

Here are a few simple steps to cultivating compassion:

1. next time you're at the supermarket checkout - engage in eye contact with the cashier and smile
2. engage in and respect nature and animals
3. listen
4. do volunteer work
5. open your heart and be genuinely interested in being compassionate!

Much love,


  1. Hi Duni! What an insightful post. I agree and have personally experienced some of your realizations, especially this one

    "compassion is seen as a weakness nowadays, not a fit platform for anyone aiming to reach the highest rung on the corporate (or political) ladder. However, in its absence societies will become more negative, more aggressive and hostile than they already are! Being compassionate takes courage."

    Compassion turns to be a rarely find treasure nowadays. But I believe that there are still a few people who possess this trait. And I believe in one way or another, you are one of them.

    Wishing you a great weekend. :)

  2. OUCH to the minor accident. Not only for the fall but the boys laughing.
    Great advice on the cultivating compassion. I couldn't agree with you more. I think I pretty much follow all but one of the 5 steps mentioned. I'm sure if I had more time though I would do the volunteer work.

  3. Great post! Makes me think of all the ways I can add compassion to my daily life!

  4. I've never been the most compassionate person and I thought that this was a strength. But now that I'm a mommy, dear heavens, everything melts my heart!

  5. I didn't even know there was a day for compassion. Thank you for making me aware of that!

    You know, I fell down some stairs a few years ago. Never should've worn 4-inch heels to the train station! I fell, tumbled over the last few steps, landed on hands and knees.

    Nobody laughed, though. They jumped over me instead! I cried, Duni! I think I'd have felt "better" if people had laughed. Instead I was completely ignored, like I was some sack of sawdust lying there. I was so hurt I was depressed for 3 days =(

  6. I do most of those things on a daily basis, in fact, my family goes nuts when I joke with the cashier wherever I go. People are human, you know, and we just have to remember to treat them that way.

    I already do the nature and animal thing--I think you know that! :)

    Okay, so I'm guilty of chuckling at someone's fall. I went around the corner at work and saw my bud, Irene, laying on the floor. She's silly all the time and I thought she was being goofy, so I laughed. Then I found out that she had slipped and I apologized over and over again to her. I think that can happen in accident, don't you? I wasn't being mean intentionally, right?

  7. Wonderful post Duni! Sorry for your fall and those boys laughing. Kids can be so mean but I'm glad you became more compassionate over the ordeal. I do all those steps although I don't volunteer as much as I'd like.

    The CPA firm I used to work for did a personality test to determine what "color" we were. I and one of the partners were the only two to be blue which meant we are sensitive. The other 4 partners and co-workers (about 25 people) were colors to indicate power and leadership and greed so we were made fun of. It was an awful day but I'd much rather be blue and caring than not!

  8. This is beautifully said, Duni! Sometimes I think that people no longer have compassion for others and miss it in many of today's youth--society seems to scream "ME!ME!ME!"

    They need to read this post:)

  9. Beautiful post Duni:) Exactly how I feel. Love and hugs to you:):)

  10. Great post, Duni!

    And I agree, wholeheartedly!!

  11. A beautiful reminder to us all! Thank you Duni.

  12. AnonymousMay 17, 2011

    What a great post! Sometimes a bit of a deviation is greatly needed to get something off your chest!

  13. Such great ideas and a wonderful article. Sorry about those boys...remember what they say about Karma!


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