13 September 2010

Natural Compassion

In "Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life" Marshall Rosenberg speaks of "natural compassion." He says
Believing that it is our nature to enjoy giving and receiving in a compassionate manner, I have been preoccupied most of my life with two questions. What happens to disconnect us from our compassionate nature, ...? And...what allows some people to stay connected to their compassionate nature under even the most trying circumstances?

My first response to the concept of an innate compassion in all people was "Ahhhh, the world is a beautiful place."

My second thought was "Really? Is it true?" followed by "How can that be known?"

From there, my thought process flowed to considerations of myself: do I find a compassionate nature in myself? Yes, I am alive to compassion as part of my nature.

Among other natural inclinations.

Today, over and over again in every "today" miraculously granted me, I can choose to stand for compassion because compassion is part of my nature.

I cannot "act" compassionately. It is not a mask to wear. It is a part of my nature that I must know and own and choose to embrace so completely that I am absorbed as I absorb it.

I choose away from it sometimes. With varying degrees of conscious awareness of my choice.

Trying to become compassionate is exhausting and doomed because compassion never has a chance to appear while we are "trying" to become compassionate. We are already compassionate. It lives in us. The quest is to discover or remember it.

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