Barbara Lazear Ascher writes a well formed essay on the concept of compassion. Compassion is something that we do for others out of the kindness of our hearts. She focuses more on the poor, just how we show them sympathy, why do we do such things. Is showing empathy from our hearts or just for them to go away. I enjoyed this essay due to the fact, that she gives humanistic reasons on why people are compassionate, she doesn’t sugar coat anything, and lastly she breaks down the compassion that she sees everyday.
“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss (...) These people have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen” (Elisabeth Kubler-Ross). Compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern make mankind beautiful, but it also makes it defenseless . When one has concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others, he takes sacrifices, risks, and lives with uncertainty. When man is compassionate, he lives a vulnerable life. Love and compassion bring out the beauty in mankind, but they can also bring out its weaknesses. Because of man’s compassion, he
Are people born with a complete quandary when it comes to compassion or is it something that has always been there? Barbara Lazear Ascher, born in 1946, writes, “On Compassion.” Having lived in New York City, Ascher is able to take first hand examples from the city to show the affection people have towards each other. Ascher is able to illustrate that compassion is something that has to be taught because of the adversity at people’s heels by including tone, persuasive appeals, and the mode of comparing and contrast in her essay, “On Compassion.”
The purpose of this essay is to question the readers. Ascher wants the audience to analyze themselves to determine the reason behind why people show kindness, whether it is out of fear, pity, or compassion.
Empathy is an innate trait that all humans have and it is the one that we most readily feel, while compassion is a feeling that must be acquired. Ascher astutely points out that “empathy is the mother of compassion” (par.13). In this noteworthy parallel, Ascher compares empathy to a nurturing mother and compassion to the fruit of her labor. Like a mother who has an inherent instinct to protect and teach her young, so too does one have an innate understanding and sensitivity to the feelings and experiences of another, and it is only from these life experiences that the birth of a new awareness is brought forth in the form of compassion. Similar to a mother’s tutelage, Ascher describes compassion as a “learned” behavior that allows one to consciously act upon the distress of others by actively alleviating it. According to Ascher, “Compassion is not a character trait like a sunny disposition. It must be learned, and it is learned by having adversity at our window…” (par.13). In other words, true compassion can only be learned when one is faced with it every day of ones life and that once it becomes “familiar”, only then it can become identifiable and conjure empathy.
Compassion is one of the fundamental characteristics implemented into patient care by health care providers. Compassion signifies “a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering” (Compassion, n.d.). Nurses and other health care providers provide selfless service, tireless dedication, compassion, and often neglect their personal needs, which
Compassion, by definition, is a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering. In our modern society, compassion plays a major role in the act of kindness. Many people believe that doing a good deed is a selfless act since they do not get nothing in return. Others believe that doing a good deed to make you feel good about yourself is selfish. It is a theory that causes you to ponder on the purpose of compassion. In Barbara Lazear Ascher’s essay, On Compassion, she contemplates this theory. By using a variety of writing techniques, Ascher is able to share her views on compassion in way that speaks to the audience.
Ascher’s essay describes the ways she has seen compassion showed, through voluntary donations, food, shelter. She openly questions what drives humans to be compassionate to each other. As a successful author who
Compassion is a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering (Dictionary.com). In the Annex you can see that many people are very compassionate towards each other. One example of this is when Peter’s cat gets lost and cannot be found. You’d expect for him to get told to suck it up and that it’s just a cat, and they’ve more important things to worry about. Instead of this you see that they try to find his cat and calm him down, which I think is very compassionate of them to think of Peter and how much he loves his cat instead of telling him to suck it up.
Within literature, Compassion has been described in many ways though very few descriptions have agreed on how it is best identified (Volpintesta 2011). Crowther et al (2013) describe compassion as a deep emotion that is felt by the individual practitioner allowing them to understand what the patient may be experiencing. Nussbaum (2003) argues that compassion goes beyond just understanding and identifying that emotion, it requires the practitioner to produce a response to the feeling or emotion in order to improve the situation. Dewar (2011) points out that compassion is not only about the recognition of the patients suffering but includes small
Compassion impels us to work to alleviate the suffering of our fellow man, to remove ourselves from the center of our world and put another there, and to honor the sanctity of every single person treating everybody, without exception, with justice, equity and respect.
Compassion has little to no boundries. In almost every great story there is a specific character or a group of characters that help the protagonist because they feel bad for them. Compassion is the most important aspect of a functioning society; therefore, Elie Wiesel’s Night, 12 Angry Men by Reginald Rose, and the generosity of spirit shown by the average citizen after the recent shooting in Las Vegas are all perfect examples.
Compassion represents an “acknowledgement of another’s suffering and is accompanied by the expression of a desire to ease or end that suffering.” (Van der Cingal, 2009, p. 124) This is a fundamental characteristic usually found in health care workers and nurses especially. In one twelve hour shift, a nurse’s job can change from taking vitals and administering medications to performing life saving measures
My earliest memory Is playing in my room alone. My back was to the door, and I was playing with brats dolls. It was the moment I realized I was alive. However, later that year I came to the decision that toys were disgusting and I no longer wanted them in my life. At 8 years old that sounds like a pretty heavy decision.
Compassion is a crucial aspect of nursing; it involves seeing the patients as more than just a medical problem. Patients look to nurses as a source of comfort to help them deal with their emotions and understand their medical problems. In Norway, a study was conducted to find the role of compassion in nursing and