Compassion is the quality of the personality or the ability to put oneself in the place of another person, to fully experience his experiences (usually the negative spectrum is meant) and to make a decision to help in any situation. Typically, the quality of compassion manifests itself from childhood, but is not innate and its manifestations depend solely on the characteristics of the society surrounding the person.

This manifestation of human nature is usually understood in one direction, namely affecting the sensual and emotional sphere. More and more people use the meaning of the word compassion synonymously for sympathy, but the difference is that the latter just means the sensual side, whereas compassion always shares the negative fate. This can be compared with joint suffering, when the second deliberately takes on part of the load to alleviate the fate of his loved one.

What it is

The concept of compassion in the first place manifests itself exclusively at the emotional level, which in its continuation can transform into actions. Compassion is always a companion trait of such traits as kindness, compassion, mercy, which are categories of human behavior, not just beautiful words.

Compassion involves not only the conscious penetration of other people's problems, but also the impact of the whole space on a person. This trait does not develop independently, it is shaped by the surrounding reality, but, nevertheless, there are certain rudiments that allow a person to respond less or more to the pain of others. A high level of empathy, sensitivity leads to the fact that other people's emotions are easily felt, but when not only the joy of the person himself begins to sympathize with his own will, experiencing the whole negative spectrum with which the emotional worlds of others are filled. With highly developed sensitivity, even social networks and television programs can influence a person.

Thus, the manifestation of compassion includes not only pity or sympathy, but a high proportion of empathy, which allows on the inner level, and not only on reflection, to come into contact with the person’s experiences. Despite the fact that many confessions present this trait as positive from a psychological point of view, this behavior may not always lead to favorable consequences. Considering that a person always needs to help in trouble, we can deprive him of the possibility of developing his own survival skills. Excessive pity makes people give up all their possessions as an ordinary manipulator, remaining with nothing or with debts. Excessive compassion, bordering on the enjoyment of one's own holiness from helping those in need, can lead to the formation of code-dependent relationships, where one will fulfill the role of a lifeguard and the other be in the eternal position of a victim whose suffering does not end.

There is a concept of distributing compassion to the rank of feminine traits or, alternatively, prevailing in the feminine world. It is women who tend to care for the sick, despite the fact that they themselves have ruined their health, they feel sorry for the weak, doing their work for them and doing many other things, which are led by compassion. In the masculine aspect of the behavior of such victims will be less, the masculine world will be more justice than compassion. The weak will be forced to overcome difficulties, the one who himself let his life down the slope will not be pulled out until the person himself wants, and those who consciously, regularly or deliberately destroy their health will not be pumped out during the next attack.

Compassion is never a substitute for love, because the mechanism for encouraging action is rather different. If, with love, an action arises more from personal desire, an assessment of the situation, sometimes to the detriment of oneself and one's interests, then in the case of compassion, a general personality development and social skills that imply the possibility of help may be an incentive factor.

Compassion is not always able to assess the true cause of unhappiness and what kind of support is lacking, it is guided by the sensual sphere, bypassing the logic of assistance. Of course, in some situations it is necessary and sometimes leaves the last straw to the person. It does not solve the problem, but when a person experiences extreme negative emotions, this is comparable to the use of pain relief in medicine - it does not cure the focus, but it helps to survive the crisis.

Compassion does not always give what the sufferer asks, because in true care it may be superfluous. It is focused on real assistance, which means it provides what is needed, and not what it asks. So an addict can ask for another dose, but the one who truly sympathizes with his condition will send him to the rehabilitation center.

True compassion is available only to strong personalities who are spiritually and spiritually capable of performing the necessary actions. Help is not to remove the suffering of others and get gratitude for it, your own peace of mind or a friend’s benefit, but above all to the sufferer himself, without pursuing selfish ends. Some authors describe compassion as an automatic decision, a subconscious choice, when helping others is the first response. This is not necessarily action and real help, changing the situation or processes in the world, but may well be limited to a warm glance, a wink, when there is no opportunity to come up or a gentle touch when words are exhausted or inappropriate. The support and actuality of its form is important, so compassion can manifest itself in completely differently directed formats.

Actions, whether mental or physical, are an integral part, where there is no such activity, we can talk about related and similar feelings of pity and sympathy. These are feelings that encourage compassion, but it is always an ability, and therefore it has an activity orientation. In addition, compassion develops a person’s own resilience to difficulties - so it turns out that the more we empathize with others, we listen to their problems and look for ways out and help, the more we pump our own skill of overcoming difficulties. Perhaps this happens because many situations are solved in someone else’s life, and this is a certain amount of knowledge, or maybe because the soul gains the important confidence that everything can be overcome.

The problem of compassion

Compassion for people is not always an exclusively positively perceived category, which is why it is important to distinguish between aspects that provoke a change in perspective on the need for this quality. On the one hand, it is believed that the lack of compassion has a positive effect on the personal life of the person himself, he becomes calm, and he can only deal with his own affairs. This is very convenient when there is no sensitivity to other people's negative emotions - the mood depends solely on one’s own affairs, there is no need to spend energy (mental, emotional, temporal or material) for the needs of others.

Those who are compassionate to those who live in this world also live harder, responsibility for other people's destinies automatically falls on their shoulders, not because it is their duty, but because the inner nature does not give an opportunity to do otherwise. But the problem remains that, where the help of others and the development of society in general is pursued, a person loses his own peace and income, but acquires some comfort in his soul and conscience. By doing otherwise without compassion and sharing the fate of the one in need, a person wins individually and for a short period. Even if a toxic feeling of guilt does not begin to torment him and he does not repent of his indifference, then a life situation comes when he begins to need compassion, but does not receive it.

In general, the impact of the absence of compassion in the future can completely destroy humanity or greatly reduce its standard of living. This is the ability that does not have the opportunity to develop individually or to be inherited, it develops in the process of education, and then self-education. Initially, it is necessary to form compassion at the level of duty and duty, and only then, when the mechanisms of mind and soul are connected, perhaps its sincere manifestation. But the opposite effect is also possible, when being among the callous and insensitive people, a person acquires an emotional crust and no longer has the desire to help.

Those who cultivated this feature at a high level of development, get together with spiritual peace from helping, a high anxiety for those who are ill. This is a trait that requires action, not reasoning, it can drain a person if not dictated by inner forces and spirituality, but it is also capable of giving strength for the continuation of one’s own life and faith in people.

Examples of compassion in literary works

Like any manifestation of the ambiguous qualities of the human person, compassion has many examples not only in real life, to which people can selectively or ignore, but also in works. In the novel War and Peace, compassion is manifested in an act of sacrificing one’s own well-being and property, when Natasha Rostova allows one to throw out his dowry, as well as other property, in order that the wounded take their place. They did not express empty sympathies and did not offer to hold on, but provided real assistance needed in that situation, dividing the pain of other people, even if they were materially deprived.

The ability to visit patients when there is no such desire and this time can be spent for their own benefit or amusement is also considered in the literature, namely when Anna visits the dying Bazarov in the novel Fathers and Sons. The ability to be present when the other is dying is considered one of the strongest tests for compassion, since death always scares with its presence, makes one think about one’s own, and feels the other as the greatest loss. In the novel The Master and Margarita, Margaret sacrifices her own happiness and the opportunity to return her lover in order to stop Frida’s sufferings and save her from all torment.

The sacrifice of one's own life for the sake of the freedom of another is described in the act of the serf in The Captain's Daughter. There are frequent examples of sacrificing one's life for a loved one, when the situation cannot be resolved otherwise. But examples of compassion are also described not only to people, but also animals, when Kashtanka was saved or when the pain of having to drown Mumu did not give peace to the soul of man. The last is about how difficult it is to endure one’s inability to correlate one’s actions and go against one’s own compassion, where duality of a given quality is manifested in the global sense of a concept.

All these examples show that in the end, giving up their own and choosing to help others, people receive much more than what they give. And also the fact that they lose peace by turning away from the problems of other people. Many examples of compassion on behalf of the author are found when describing the experiences of a hero, they talk about their feelings of pity, regret, and sympathy.