Compassion is the closest single-word translation that we can get when considering 'Karuna', Yoga's word for compassion. But in my opinion it's a wonky fit. This sort of Karuna-compassion means something deeper.
It means to seek to diminish the suffering of others. No fixing. No hierarchy of who has their 'ish more together. No lectures. No patronizing. Just a genuine desire to lessen suffering - to bring ease in hopes to balance another's great effort.
Isn't that a relief? I mean, who wants to 'feel sorry' for someone, or themselves? That's junk compassion. That creates a separateness from the current situation. It puts a polarity on situations - makes them bad or good. Well situations are just situations and sometimes we don't have a lot of control over the outcome. We all are going to have days that are crummy, circumstances we'd rather not face, decisions we're not proud of. But it helps, very little, to have someone 'feel sorry' for you. What we need is a hand to hold. A listening ear. A present friend.
Let's start with ourselves. Let's model compassion with an understanding that there's nothing to fix. Life is life and when the going gets tough, the best way out it through, armored with a whole heap of compassion.
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