Today I continue that conversation, but with other voices-in a new way. These are 10 of my favorite quotes on empathy and being empathetic.
It is important for us to remember that we know only an infinitesimal part of all there is to know. It’s highly likely that everyone we meet has a piece of the puzzle that we don’t, and we should probably be busy trying to learn from each other.
Yes, this is about yourself (myself), personally. But if you (I) can recognize that you (I) are made up of flaws, often doing your worst when you mean the best, then you (I) can more easily understand that others often are as well.
This gives me chills, and it is one of the best reasons to read. When we read, we can access the thoughts and feelings of other people. Even if they are creations, as in fiction, they are created by other humans, and they tell us something about humanity.
This is very, very good advice. If we remembered that each time we see one another might be the last, then so many little things would be easier to overcome.
Talking won’t solve everything, but dialogue does dispel fear, which is the root of a lot of our troubles.
We must be conscious of even our own biases. We find what we look for; we hear what we listen for, because that’s what we’re concentrating on.
What we say matters; it matters a lot. In some ways, what we write matters even more, as it’s more permanent. And we are a culture of writing-blogs, text messages, Facebook posts, Tweets…We write often, and we forget how much words matter.
Being empathetic isn’t about saving people. It’s not about figuring out what’s wrong with them. It’s about recognizing their humanity and yours, then loving them as much as you can-or even just saying live and let live.
Not everyone is perfect. Not every hooker has a heart of gold, and not every bad boy turns good at the end. But it happens, and we need to be conscious of it.
Loving an animal fosters empathy, teaches respect and responsibility, and can add years to one’s life. Kids know. Out of the mouths of babes and whatnot.
And a Bonus: