USING YOUR OWN INJURIES TO HEAL OTHERS

I am most pleased to reblog this post from http://creatingreciprocity.wordpress.com from yesterday. Karen Armstrong’s approach to comfort and compassion being shown around the world is so well introduced here:

creatingreciprocity

 

Sadness is not contagious.  In our valiant efforts to be constructive and positive in a world full of difficulty, we can mistake avoiding the distress of others for a way of maintaining our own positivity.

Thanks to our mirror neurons and our natural empathy with other living creatures, encountering sadness most definitely touches us and can even make us feel upset.

But while avoiding the pain of others may momentarily make us feel better, it doesn’t really contribute to our own well-being – or even our own happiness.

Engaging with others in their suffering has an important place in our development as individuals and as societies.

The Charter for Compassion, founder, Karen Armstrong, has some interesting points to make about this subject.

In Buddhism, compassion (karuna) is defined as a determination to liberate others from their grief, something that is impossible if we do not admit to our own…

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30 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. willowdot21
    Feb 21, 2012 @ 07:07:24

    Great article to reblogg!

    • granbee
      Feb 21, 2012 @ 07:10:04

      Thanks, willowdot! I consider this blog a major source of inspiration and instruction for anyone at all that truly wants to make any sort of difference in this world.

  2. totsymae1011
    Feb 21, 2012 @ 08:09:32

    So nice for you to share that article.
    Now, loan me $500,000.

    No, seriously. I really enjoyed that. Made all the sense in the world.

    • granbee
      Feb 21, 2012 @ 08:16:17

      So very pleased you found the sense in this article. I did right away, and hoped my dear followers would, as well. Hooray, Tots. What WOULD I do without your good downhome sense?

  3. willofheart
    Feb 21, 2012 @ 12:57:56

    this is great article granbee I am glad you re blog it…

    • granbee
      Feb 21, 2012 @ 23:34:11

      willof, if you liked this article, I would strongly encourage you to follow creatingreciprocity’s website! You will be so encouraged and inspired there–I promise! I could not resist reblogging this post, because I knew my own followers would really be inspired by it! Hooray for my blogging friends and their compassion!

  4. Indira
    Feb 21, 2012 @ 15:09:27

    You are right granbee,avoiding others pain does not contributes to our well being. Religion to me means love and compassion. Thanks for re blogging this post.

    • granbee
      Feb 21, 2012 @ 23:35:09

      Indira, bless you, dear sister! I am so very pleased you enjoyed this reblogged post! I agree that compassion and love and unselfishness are at the root of our faith systems!

      • claudia
        Feb 22, 2012 @ 01:03:39

        yep..i agree with that… think we are never really unselfish though…but it’s good to go steps in that direction and help where we see the pain

        • granbee
          Feb 22, 2012 @ 01:06:07

          Well, Claudia, as long as we are burdened with our flesh and the material world, we can never be 100& unselfish. However, we CAN channel our own selfish thoughts into enlightenment about the details of the sufferings and disappointments of others.So pleased to have you joing this conversation! Hooray for blogging!

  5. Sue Dreamwalker
    Feb 22, 2012 @ 00:56:11

    Thanks for re-blogging this one Granbee.. I will add here what I added to the original Post Granbee.
    “An excellent post.. More and more do I feel others sorrows and more and more I let my sorrow show within my own tears.. Compassion comes also from a point of gratitude.. Understanding there but for the Grace of God go I…. But its also allowing your own emotions and outlet.. for many years I kept my own in check.. Now they flood out … And its ok to feel……. and express those feelings.. Just as its natural to laugh.. so too is it natural to cry.. And as we cry we wash ourselves clean as we release what may have been years if not life times of pent up emotions..
    Love and Blessings to you.. ~Dreamwalker xx”
    Love and Hugs 🙂 xx

    • granbee
      Feb 22, 2012 @ 01:03:32

      Bless you, Sue, for your painstaking commentary support and inspiration and sharing. I remember reading this comment by you at the original post site! I would never have guess that YOU, of all people, would have once held back your own tears and joys! I beat my drum with yours so gratefully!

  6. bardessdmdenton
    Feb 22, 2012 @ 01:07:19

    This a wonderful wise reposting…which sent me to read the entire post by creatingreciprocity.

    I loved the quote from how Buddhism regards responding to other’s pain:

    ‘Today there is often a degree of heartlessness in our determined good cheer, because if we simply tell people to be ‘positive’ when they speak to us of their sorrow, we may leave them feeling misunderstood and isolated in their distress.’

    Thank you again, Granbee, for sharing such truth that affirms and enlightens!

    • granbee
      Feb 23, 2012 @ 02:20:27

      You are absolutely right when you pick up on that very wise Buddhist teaching about the proper way to respond to another’s pain! Christianity, in its core, in the New Testament, tells us that Jesus wept with those who wept. This is true compassion, not the pseudo-pop psychology of “just think positive”, let along what I heard as a child: “Stop being such a cry-baby”, etc. etc. etc. And how can we possibly affirm other’s right to sadness if we do not acknowledge our own right to sadness. Neither Buddha nor Jesus nor Moses nor Abraham nor Krishna nor Mohammed pretended that they never felt sad!You are absolutely right when you pick up on that very wise Buddhist teaching about the proper way to respond to another’s pain! Christianity, in its core, in the New Testament, tells us that Jesus wept with those who wept. This is true compassion, not the pseudo-pop psychology of “just think positive”, let along what I heard as a child: “Stop being such a cry-baby”, etc. etc. etc. And how can we possibly affirm other’s right to sadness if we do not acknowledge our own right to sadness. Neither Buddha nor Jesus nor Moses nor Abraham nor Krishna nor Mohammed pretended that they never felt sad!

  7. Martin Shone
    Feb 22, 2012 @ 06:00:12

    We all feel sad, and so should all feel for the sadness of others in our selves, yet for some this sadness isn’t given to others but kept inside and this is where the pain begins to occupy the world. If we all released our pains into the ether where like minded souls also release thier pain then as sure as snowdrops break the crust so will the spiritual souls of us break through this crust of neglecting the sadness of ourselves.

    Yet isn’t it so very hard to do this ~ for me I am the worst as my pain is my pain yet I find a way to release it through my poetry and so I guess it reaches out to the ether this way, perhaps. And perhaps we all need to find our own safety valve our own creative release.

    Thank you, Rose 🙂

  8. becca givens
    Feb 22, 2012 @ 07:02:37

    granbee – Thank you for sharing this post with more people … its message is heart felt and enlightening. Many blessings for your beacon of light through which many continue to pass!! ~~ becca

    • granbee
      Feb 23, 2012 @ 02:21:53

      Becca, bless you, dear girl, for being so supportive of this reblogged post! Pray with me that the light will grow brighter and brighter here! You are so wonderful in your ongoing participation and support here!

  9. lscotthoughts
    Feb 22, 2012 @ 07:03:21

    Rose, thank you for sharing a wonderful post and message~I agree with Martin about not holding our pain inside or shoving it under the rug…if we can feel confident or strong enough to show our pain, whether it be through our writing, our tears, or talking with others, then we’re that much more able to be compassionate with others during their times of trouble~xx

    • granbee
      Feb 23, 2012 @ 02:23:44

      Amen, Sister Lauren. I was so pleased Martin felt free to express those thoughts about this act of showing our pain in order to be more compassionate and supportive of others with their own pain. I have known from your poems at your blog that you feel this way. Bless my most honorable followers!

  10. Miro
    Feb 23, 2012 @ 03:53:24

    Great article. The key is to face and embrace. So many are afraid for their own joy and comfort to do so, and one of the biggest ironies I’ve ever discovered in life is that only when we let go of our own selfish quest for joy and comfort and face and embrace things that on the surface seem like they will threaten it, do we truly find it.

    • granbee
      Feb 23, 2012 @ 04:40:47

      You are absolutely correct, Miro! Facing down the dragon makes a longterm friend. This is part of my Welsh background and cultural mythology. I think it has strong applications here in this reblogged post and within each of us! Think what a great protector and scout your very own personal dragon would be. Think how it would help you quickly find those lost, needy ones, including the “lost,needy” parts of yourself!

  11. jenx67
    Mar 01, 2012 @ 07:09:11

    My goodness, this is so profound and I don’t say that often. This is what I do. Use my injuries to make others feel less alone about theirs. I love it when some mystery for me is fully articulated by a stranger I’ll probably never meet. Thanks for posting this.

    • granbee
      Mar 01, 2012 @ 23:23:16

      So pleased to have you drop in again, Jen! Yes, I was truly impressed by this post for its straightforward practicality about sincerely supporting others in their sadness. We DO have to get our own stuff out on the table first and love ourselves,don’t we? That is how we learn to be sensitive and discreet and discerning in showing compassion to others! Loving your Gen X self!

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