February 24

Reflection

Having compassion lifts us out of our own small world and broadens our vision. We are enabled to see beyond ourselves to the injustice and oppression afflicting others. When we are concerned only for ourselves, self-absorption and self-involvement detach us from reality. We become engrossed only with our own desires and our own self-interests. Compassion is an inner sensitivity to the suffering of others and it calls us to take action against the forces of injustice that cause their suffering. This includes the other creatures with whom we share our planet and earth itself.

Prayer

May we embrace each other with compassion, no matter what our age, color, creed, history, or belief. May we treat all in the community of life with care and respect.

Action 

Remember that everything is intimately interconnected. There is nothing and no one to whom we are not connected and their needs are as important as our own. How can you play your part in this?

Suggested Readings

Jesus, moved with compassion, put out his hand, and touched him, and said to him,” I will; be made clean.“
Mark 1:40

When he went ashore he saw a great throng; and he had compassion on them, and he healed their sick. And when it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a lonely place and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.”
Matthew 14:13

Let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action.
John 3:18

Compassion is a privileged way to promote justice, since empathizing with what others are experiencing allows us to not only understand their struggles, hardships, and fears, but also to discover, in the frailness of every human being, his or her unique worth and dignity.
Pope Francis

Jesus disclosed that God is compassionate. Jesus spoke of God that way: “Be compassionate, as God is compassionate.” Compassion is the primary quality of the central figures in two of his most famous parables: the father in the parable of the Prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan. And Jesus himself, as a manifestation of the sacred, is often spoken of as embodying compassion.
Marcus J. Borg

Compassion is the keen awareness of the interdependence of all things.
Thomas Merton

The purpose of all the major religious traditions is not to construct big temples on the outside, but to create temples of goodness and compassion inside, in our hearts.
Dalai Lama XIV

Compassion literally means to feel with, to suffer with. Everyone is capable of compassion, and yet everyone tends to avoid it because it’s uncomfortable. And the avoidance produces psychic numbing — resistance to experiencing our pain for the world and other beings.
Joanna Macy

Consider the rights of others before your own feelings, and the feelings of others before your own rights.
John Wooden

The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good.
Samuel Johnson

The most self-absorbed people display an ironic pension for the smallest minds and the largest mouths.
Aaron W. Matthews

What I want in my life is compassion a flow between myself and others based on mutual giving from the heart.
Marshall Rosenberg

A self-centered life will have a tendency to confuse its selfish desire with God’s will.
Santanu Mishra

 

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