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Empathy can hurt you! Compassion heals. | LinkedIn

August 11, 2013

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Empathy can hurt you and is a state that someone cannot remain in and be healthy. Compassion can be an ever giving, joyful, state of being. So says several great thinkers of our day such as Roshi Joan Halifax of Upaya and Matthieu Ricard, Buddhist Monk, author and advisor to the Dalai Lama. An empathetic state is seen as de-energizing and a compassionate state is seen as ever-energizing.

In a number of schools training for care givers and aid workers is being focused on moving them out of empathetic states that tend to lead to PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) into more balanced compassionate states.

Roshi Joan Halifax, at Upaya, says:

"Compassion is considered to be:

• the capacity to attend to the experience of others

• to feel concern for others

• to sense what will serve others

• potentially to be able to be of service

There is an important distinction between empathy and compassion.

• Empathy: “feeling with”—vicariously sharing the same feeling with another.

• Compassion: “feeling for” another: but not necessarily taking it on."

Thoughts? Is having empathy harmful to the individual feeling it?

How can we train compassion? Where should it be done, schools, business?

Posted by:Jeffrey Walker

via Empathy can hurt you! Compassion heals. | LinkedIn.


Born in 1964, business owner, from Woodbridge, VA, owns ExcitingAds! Inc. ( and blog ( He was born in Mirpurkhas, Sind, Pakistan. His elementary school was ST. Michael's Convent High School, Mirpurkhas, Sind, Pakistan. Graduated high school from ST. Bonaventure's Convent High School, Hyderabad, Sind, Pakistan. His pre-med college was S. A. L. Govt. College, Mirpurkas, Sind, Pakistan. Graduated from Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences, Jamshoro, Sind, Pakistan in 1990. Earned equivalency certification from Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates, Philadelphia, PA in 1994.

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