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Invisiblesilversoul7
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Trouble with compassion?
    #3300686 - 10/31/04 11:16 AM (13 years, 27 days ago)

I've always considered myself a fairly compassionate person. Whenever a homeless guy asks for change, I give him what I have. When someone has a problem, I try to help. While I don't have much money, I try and give what I can to charity. But when you look at all the suffering in the world, it begins to look pretty futile. I sympathize with all the people suffering from famine, war, and oppression, but really, what can you do? Sometimes the magnitude of it all just makes me start to feel indifferent. Am I supposed to forsake all these material comforts around me to feed all these people? Do I need to sacrifice everything I have to help these people? It still won't be enough. What I have determined is that I can help those close to me. I can't save the world, but I can make it a little better by improving the lives of those with whom I associate.


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"It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong."--Voltaire


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OfflineGomp
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: silversoul7]
    #3300712 - 10/31/04 11:31 AM (13 years, 27 days ago)

you can not help people? you must help them help them self?
what if the homeless guy went and bought a gun for those change and killed someone? did you help him become evil? and was you goal then actually fur filled when giving him your money?
not saying it is wrong to give the changes, but believing you are helping anyone but yourself by doing it? i guess what I'm saying whit this post, is that you can only help yourself? helping others is a lie, you never know what they do whit your assistance?
maybe tranquil but i elaborate if anyone ask :P


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OfflineGomp
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: silversoul7]
    #3300730 - 10/31/04 11:40 AM (13 years, 27 days ago)

Deep awareness of the suffering of another coupled with the wish to relieve it. is that what you feel? i guess, how can you know of the suffering? what if you misinterpret? to be aware of the suffering of others, is like telepathy? just asking questions, i do not know..:P


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InvisibleSclorch
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: silversoul7]
    #3302961 - 11/01/04 12:33 AM (13 years, 26 days ago)

The best way to help people is to help them think for themselves (read: critical thinking).

And every so often buy a homeless guy a sandwich...


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OfflineDivided_Sky
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: Sclorch]
    #3303062 - 11/01/04 01:08 AM (13 years, 26 days ago)

If you have no ego compassion will be your sole motivation and you won't care about anything else. Success won't matter, you just do what you do. You will always have empathy for others, but nothing will ever bring you down or make you unhappy.


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1. "After an hour I wasn't feeling anything so I decided to take another..."
2. "We were feeling pretty good so we decided to smoke a few bowls..."
3. "I had to be real quiet because my parents were asleep upstairs..."


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OfflinePed
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: silversoul7]
    #3303169 - 11/01/04 02:02 AM (13 years, 26 days ago)

Compassion is understood relative to three other perfect views. There is love, which is the wish that the object of our compassion be happy and secure. There is equanimity, which is the understanding that the object of our compassion is no less and no more important than ourselves. Equanimity is a non-distinction between our friends, enemies, family, or strangers. There is sympathetic joy, which is the recognition that the object of our compassion has within them the potential for happiness. Sympathetic joy rejoices in others' good fortune.

In summary,

Love wishes happiness for others.
Compassion wishes relief for others.
Equanimity deteaches the ego from either wish.
Joy rejoices in others' happiness.


>> Sometimes the magnitude of it all just makes me start to feel indifferent.

Statements like this suggest that your compassionate acts toward others might be mixed up with egoistic views. It is not the responsibility of any one human being to transform the globe, or even the life of just one person. No one is of such grand importance, not even Buddha or Christ. Reading your post, it seems from my point of view that if you wish to resolve your trouble with compassion, you should place less emphasis on what limited actions "silversoul7" can carry out to temporarily alleviate the sufferings of a few others, and more emphasis on developing a mind which has sincere empathy with the sufferings of countless living beings, and which wishes them happiness equally in spite of their short comings.

With that will come great inner transformation. And that is about the best we can do to change the world.


"Even offering three hundred bowls of food three times a day does not match the spiritual merit gained in one moment of love." --Nagarjuna


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InvisibleMoonshoe
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: Ped]
    #3304998 - 11/01/04 04:04 PM (13 years, 25 days ago)

ped always says it best.

Do what you can to help those around you, but only as far as they want you to help them. Forced help is not help at all.

DO what you can, no one can ask more of you


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InvisibleEvolving
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Registered: 10/01/02
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: silversoul7]
    #3308770 - 11/02/04 01:07 PM (13 years, 24 days ago)

Sclorch raises a good point, teach a man to fish and all that... I would also add that if you want to help people, you can do it better if you become materially successful. Become a mentor. If you run a business, hire people with potential and give them training on the job, a means where they can provide for themselves (domestically) and/or donate to schools in impoverished countries. There are of course other ways to help people but you can do more good from a position of wealth than if you take a vow of poverty - poor people by definition have trouble even providing for themselves.


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To call humans 'rational beings' does injustice to the term, 'rational.'  Humans are capable of rational thought, but it is not their essence.  Humans are animals, beasts with complex brains.  Humans, more often than not, utilize their cerebrum to rationalize what their primal instincts, their preconceived notions, and their emotional desires have presented as goals - humans are rationalizing beings.


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Offlinedrunkencoyote
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Registered: 10/19/04
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: Evolving]
    #3309524 - 11/02/04 04:19 PM (13 years, 24 days ago)

You know alot of the homeless are beyond help,either so bitter and jaded with accepting thier lot or so mentally disturbed that they couldn't function if even you gave them the hand up.I mean the Survival of the fittest still rings true even in our "socially evolved" times.Even the homeless guy who doesn't know where to sleep freezes to death or gets jacked by the "predators.".You give too much to the disenfranchised you just upset the tenous checks and balances that do exist.I don't mean to sound completely heartless,I want you don't quit volunteering at the soup kitchen.But I grew up poor,I missed more than my share of meals and I've slept in some cold places but I dragged myself out of that because I had the desire too.I've seen alot of other guys do it too,ya know kick the acceptance of where they are and have that revelation,"Hey I have a kid I can't do this." or whatever.You are what you make yourself and too try and change these peoples live who have already given up on them or are incapable of improving is wrong.A creature incapable of providing for itself or its kin,dies that nature concrete and glass shouldn't change that truth.
I'm sorry if I offended thats just my two cents


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Offlinedeff
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Re: Trouble with compassion? [Re: drunkencoyote]
    #3309756 - 11/02/04 04:56 PM (13 years, 24 days ago)

Suffering is a subjective label.

The only way to rid suffering is for the subject to realize it never existed.

Guilt and pity are a form of rebound suffering, which may be hard to look beyond, but are definitely hindrances themselves.

The most you can do is to realize the non-existance of suffering within your own perception. This may sound selfish, but it isn't. Realize everything is perfect, and these subjective labels are only aspects of this perfect whole as well.

This isn't to say you shouldn't help others, if you want to then go for it :smile:

Just realize that suffering is a balancing act of illusion. As long as you acknowledge its fake existance, all you can do is inevitably balance the sides of it. Killing animals to feed the homeless. Elimanating mosquitoes to rid 'west nile'. You get the point :smile:

So, just flow :laugh:


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