The essence of compassion (channeled)

The following is channeled material on compassion:

 

 

Let us speak to you today on the topic of compassion. Understand that when we use this term, we would like to refer to it as ‘an expression of Love’. Compassion is, in our perception, a melding of one’s energy with another’s. A combining to create something new that didn’t exist before. This new creation of energy as a combination of yours and another’s unites you, creates a bond between you. Over time, this act of creation between two people takes on a life of its own in some ways. But regardless of the length of time of the melding of energies, there does exist to varying degrees an understanding, awareness, acknowledgment, and acceptance of the state the other is in at that present moment. This acceptance for the state of another, whatever state that may be, is what we see as compassion.

This implies, of course, that there is no need to do anything on either side. Neither party involved in an act of compassion – or an experience of compassion – need do anything other than exist in that present moment. In other words, all that either party need do is simply allow the moment to take place. This, then, is acceptance.

 

As you might imagine, compassion manifests in many different ways; mainly in ways which you are unaware of the time. One may have compassion for anther person, for a group, or a community, or for an entire state of being that affects many people. Keep in mind that compassion is not one-sided. It is not something one does, or does not do, or has, or does not have. It is simply a state of allowing acceptance for a state of being to unfold and take place.

 

The concept commonly known today as ‘compassion’ connotes a lack of acceptance. It is implies that change is needed. There may be love there, but with that love is a lack of complete acceptance for the state that exists in that present moment. When one feels what is termed ‘compassion’ for, for instance, a legless man on a street in a third world country, typically one wishes to do something to aid them in their suffering. What we see as compassion, however, is simply accepting that state, however horrible it appears, as a state of perfection in that moment. Again, this creates an energy entity, a new creation of life itself, that combining with all the other energy entities in all the myriad acts of compassion in any given moment. It creates a domino effect comprised of Love. This domino effect of course triggers further acts of compassion.

Driving down the street you see an apparently homeless person digging in a trashcan. It’s a mere glance as your car speeds through the darkness to the light of your own warm home. This mere glance doesn’t cause you to wonder about where the person will sleep tonight, what they are eating or not eating, what their past may have been light. No, you simply see a scene and continue moving on in your own path. That is compassion.

Children manifest compassion naturally. What is termed ‘a child’s innocent curiosity about others’ is really a manifestation of compassion. Children are naturally curious about those who have a different appearance from their own. There is no judgment in this curiosity. It is simply an acknowledgment of What Is. That is compassion. A cat stalks a bird out in the garden. The cat’s whiskers twitch with anticipations. The bird hops about, blithely hunting for seeds, unaware of its imminent doom. That is compassion. For each acknowledges the perfection of the state the other is in.

Question: There are those who will interpret the above as an excuse not to have to do anything when faced with real pain such as starvation, violence, or social injustice. What’s the difference between this and indifference, if it looks the same in the world?

Indifference is an intentional act of non-acceptance. It’s a turning away, a resistance to What Is. It’s true that on the face of it, indifference appears much like true compassion. But the energetic difference is felt on all sides. Indifference does not feed into the domino effect of Love, for instance. However, when faced with real problems such as poverty, violence, starvation, one can have compassion and act at the same time. The action does not deny the acknowledgment of the perfection of that state. The action simply helps create new pathways along which that state of perfection can move. Each of you is moved to act when faced with certain triggering dilemmas. Each of you has his own benchmark that moves you from indifference to caring. In the wider perspective, however, again we state that there is no obligation to act. There is no need to do anything when faced with these problems, but we do see the entirety of human experience as perfection. Joy and violence exist within the same sphere of human experience, and to us, all human experience is an expression of Love. We hold you with compassion for we see you as perfect in every moment. That is not to say that we do not acknowledge the transformation you undergo all the time, but there is no need for change, no need to do anything other than simply exist. And even that is a matter of choice as well.

Question: What happens when you try to help others out of guilt or obligation? How is this different?

When one performs a charitable act based on a sense of rightness, duty, obligation, energetically this creates a void becomes there is an expectation of change that comes along with the act. The recipient is bewildered by this, perhaps not consciously, but feels a sense of expectation, yet has no direction to move. All of you have experienced what this feels like. An act of true compassion, on the other hand rides on acceptance and the energy remains in balance. There is a letting go of all expectations in the allowing of What Is that is compassion.

Do you have general questions you’d like to ask that you’d like to see channeling on? You’re welcome to use the Contact Form!


Thanks to Albert the Urban Monk,Wade of The Middle Way, and Kenton of Zen-Inspired Self Development for initiating this group writing project on the topic of compassion. I also recommend The Empowered Soul blog for their writing on this topic.

There is another post on this subject!

For further reading, please see Part 2 on Compassion!? Thank you!

28 Comments

  1. Mike S December 29, 2007 at 3:37 pm - Reply

    This is certainly a different take on compassion and I’m trying to roll with it, but it’s difficult.

    So in awareness of children being raped, tortured or mutilated I should be “simply accepting that state, however horrible it appears, as a state of perfection in that moment”? Through this accepting of the “moment” I have extended compassion?

    This may be my mistake in the interpretation and I’ve read it over a few times. It seems to me you’re saying that there is perfection in our self-created Hell and simply “accepting” it will somehow change it?

    • tremor December 29, 2007 at 4:22 pm - Reply

      That question is really part of the first question to the channeling – what’s the difference between that sort of accepting compassion (without the need to act) and indifference? In the response, it says that action can be part of the acceptance. Quite frankly, if I see a child being raped, tortured, or mutilated, then action will come. The question is more: does it come from the acceptance of the situation completely, or a desire to shut it out?

       
      In the case of the child – and I’m speaking as someone who had traumatic experiences in childhood – that help that comes with a denial attached makes the problem worse. When there’s a help that really can’t accept the reality of the trauma that occurred, without love for the experience at all, then the trauma is likely to be fixated because the child won’t be able to talk about it. There’s no room for it.

       

      From The Disappearance of the Universe, “Only infinite patience brings immediate results”.

       
      The key here is to understand that pain isn’t intrinsic in anything that’s going on – it’s created from our interpretation of the experience. We assume that change only comes from pushing for it. And yet change is part of nature – powerful changes. It’s part of who we are. Simply accepting something creates powerful ripples of change, but they come in a very different fashion, without struggle. In this culture which loves battles to be won, this is a shift in philosophy. You don’t need to battle something in order to create positive changes. It happens on its own; nothing is permanent. And we are built for self-healing.

  2. One of my most loving and compassionate moments came about once on a parking lot in the early morning hours. I was tired and we were almost finished with the parking lot striping job that my husband and I were working on. I saw a movement at the store across the street. I stopped and watched the homeless man across the street going through the garbage.

    Suddenly, I felt such love and connection to this perfect stranger. It was as if we were one in the Universe. This connection lasted just for a second before I went back to working with a smile on my face for the wonderful lesson of compassion that I had been given. Thanks for reminding me of that night.

    • tremor January 1, 2008 at 11:28 am - Reply

      That’s a wonderful example. We tend to think lessons must be grandiose, or have suffering attached. A simple connection is one of the most powerful of lessons.

  3. Albert | UrbanMonk.Net January 1, 2008 at 9:28 am - Reply

    This is very powerful, and I can see the truth in it. Eckhart Tolle said the same thing – pure acceptance of the other person, just as they are. If action arises out of that acceptance, then it will be compassion. But sometimes just acceptance is enough. Thank you for this post.

    • tremor January 1, 2008 at 11:27 am - Reply

      Acceptance (which includes awareness in the present moment, as Eckhart Tolle spoke of) is always enough. Of course there’s no need to limit yourself to non-action, as that wouldn’t be acceptance. Any action coming from acceptance leaves powerful ripples spreading out in the world.

      Thank you!

  4. Andrea Hess | Empowered Soul January 2, 2008 at 8:49 am - Reply

    I had to come by and read the article, of course!!!

    I agree that true change evolves out of acceptance of what IS. Part of that for me is always acknowledging that we have created all of our experiences – even the horrible ones. Only through that empowered perspective (which for me is also an act of compassion, no?) can a new creative act of change truly arrive.

    Thanks for this wonderful article!
    Blessings,
    Andrea

    • tremor January 2, 2008 at 2:30 pm - Reply

      Absolutely! This is why I prefer using the term “All That Is” rather than “God”. Loving All That Is is much more descriptive than “Loving God”.

      And thank you!

  5. Wade M | TheMiddleWay January 8, 2008 at 2:06 am - Reply

    Hi Tremor,

    Thanks for your post in the GWP. It’s been great to read about no needs, and just the ability to exist.

    Peace,
    Wade
    http://themiddleway.net

  6. Wade M | TheMiddleWay January 10, 2008 at 5:08 am - Reply

    Hi Tremor,

    Congratulations! Out of the amazingly high quality results, your entry has been selected as a winning entry. Please e-mail me your postal details so we can get The Now Watch out to you.

    Thanks again for entering, and congratulations.

    Peace,

    The Three Monks
    http://urbanmonk.net (Albert)
    http://kentonwhitman.com (Kenton)
    http://themiddleway.net (Wade)

  7. Kris January 10, 2008 at 11:20 am - Reply

    Tremor, First off congratulations on winning in the writing contest. I hope I correctly understand that this response was channeled, I wasn’t sure, not that it matters. As a Buddhist practitioner, I come from a different angle yet don’t completely disagree with this take on Compassion. I do disagree with the concept of acceptance in which both parties need not do anything.

     
    The statement of “The concept commonly known today as “compassion” connotes a lack of acceptance. It is implies that change is needed”, is interesting. In compassion, one sees that another is suffering, wants to ease it, hence change is needed. It’s not implied, it’s stated in most definitions as well as other’s understandings. If one has empathy, well then I would say that might have an implied “need to change” component.

     
    The crux of Compassion (again, from a Buddhist bend) is the ability to see suffering in another and the desire to ease suffering for that sentient being.

     
    I guess the bottom line is what I feel is being expressed in your post is “empathy” and not compassion.

     
    In reading the following; “Driving down the street you see an apparently homeless person digging in a trashcan. It’s a mere glance as your car speeds through the darkness to the light of your own warm home. This mere glance doesn’t cause you to wonder about where the person will sleep tonight, what they are eating or not eating, what their past may have been light. No, you simply see a scene and continue moving on in your own path. That is compassion”, I’m struck again with what isn’t compassion. If the person in the car were to feel a twinge of sorrow for the situation of that homeless person and that homeless person also feel sorrow, this would be empathy. Compassion would be to recognize the suffering in this person, after once seeing that they were truly suffering. Then in an act of selflessness, the person in the car aides the other person, which could happen in several ways.

     
    I guess my final thought is that this take on compassion is interesting yet I don’t agree with it, compassion in any definition is seeing the suffering in others and having a strong desire to alleviate that suffering. The concept expressed here is a good one yet not compassion.

     

    • tremor January 10, 2008 at 12:01 pm - Reply

      Thank you for your thoughtful reply!
       
      I understand your response – it is a common one. It’s part of the reason I wrote a part 2 to this. So if you haven’t read that, please do.
       
      That said, one might look at the life of Buddha, who epitomized compassion. Was he known most for organizing drives to feed the hungry? No, he was known for his teachings on transcending suffering, along with his presence. And a major of his teachings was simply that suffering comes from resistance and craving.
       

      So you could simply say that giving an example of a life without suffering is the most practical way to help others. It is the power of presence, and it is what great spiritual teachers give. Does this mean not doing anything? Of course not. It means not having to do anything because of a lack of welcoming of the experience of suffering in others. One can still act. If someone is starving, you give them food. The question is, do you see the complete person beyond the experience as you’re doing it?

  8. Kris January 10, 2008 at 12:19 pm - Reply

    Totally didn’t see the other post, I’ll read that right away. Yet I’m still not on your line of thinking. Yes, in Buddha’s teaching suffering comes from resistance and craving. I’m not sure that simply saying because Buddha didn’t organize food drive (this we really don’t know one way or the other) it was his presence that was the key. This could be a logical argument if indeed it was known that he didn’t feed the hungry.
     
    To clarify, are you saying that it’s the presence of a spiritual teacher that matters most? That the subject of compassion may not see past the suffering, this is the reason why presence is more important than action or the doing of compassion? In other words, easing the suffering of other’s while they don’t understand why is wrong?
     

    • tremor January 10, 2008 at 12:48 pm - Reply

      Again, this isn’t an anti-feed the hungry. It’s simply saying that if you try to lessen suffering from a space of resistance and craving, suffering still exists. When you think you need to do something, that you have a duty and obligation to do so, then you are putting yourself in a prison of sorts. Resistance is the natural result. I’m saying freedom, complete inner freedom, comes first. Actions coming from that place have magnitudes more power behind them.
       
      The key is that suffering is completely in the experiencer. Great masters, such as Ramana Maharishi, have experienced extreme pain such as cancer and did not have the experience of suffering. Now it isn’t compassionate to expect others to get there, but to see suffering for what it is is an act of compassion. It helps others’ sufferings ease. The root of compassion for me is oneness. No “this is happening to you and I must relieve it”, but rather that any actions that come will be generated from the same place as relieving discomfort within your own body. That level of naturalness.
       

  9. Kris January 10, 2008 at 1:04 pm - Reply

    You have to forgive me, I’m not arguing with you I’m trying to understand you and I think we might be getting to that place.
     
    In the first part of the reply above, are you saying; “one who tries to relieve suffering in another without first being free from that themselves should stop and free themselves first”?”
     
    When you think you need to do something, that you have a duty and obligation to do so, then you are putting yourself in a prison of sorts”. – You’ve quoted Buddhist parables as well as stories of Tibetan Buddhists, of which they all would feel that they have an obligation or a duty to help others. Especially the Boddhisatva’s. Are they in a prison?
     
    Are you basically saying that the greatest compassion you could show to another is simply loving yourself or even further, being free of suffering yourself?
     
    Gassho,
     
    Kris
     

    • tremor January 10, 2008 at 1:16 pm - Reply

      Boddhisatva’s have taken a vow to remain incarnated until all beings are free. This is a choice, not a duty. When you take away your own choice, your own Self in a way, then this is a very different thing – that is a prison. You are trying to force yourself into a mold someone else made. This is a mold of a boddhisatva – a very nice one, but still an image. I’m saying that if you’re not free, it’s harder to help someone else to freedom.

       
      I’m not saying anything about what you “should” do. Thinking you should stop and fix yourself before helping others is a nice way of denying compassion for yourself, which creates ripples outward. I’m certainly saying that being in a state of complete love for Self and the world is one of the most helpful things you can do, to say nothing about joyful. So yes, your final statement I completely agree with.
       

      • kris January 10, 2008 at 2:05 pm - Reply

        now I fully understand you, thank you. I don’ agree with this idea, I think it is part, a very important part. Thanks for hanging with me on this.

        Namaste

        Kris

        • Kris January 10, 2008 at 2:28 pm - Reply

          Typing on a iPhone does not make for good communication, let me say this again. I fully understand you now but I feel this is only part of the goal as well as part of the definition of compassion.

          Thanks….

          Kris

  10. As an incest survivor, I strive to take responsibility for my part in creating my reality as an incest survivor. It helps that I believe in karma. I can see how my suffering in this lifetime could be in payment for the suffering that I know I caused others in past lives. In at least one lifetime that I am aware of I was the rapist. In another I was the raped. I also know that my father was my husband in a past lifetime. I believe that karma plays a heavy role in what we choose for ourselves from lifetime to lifetime. The lessons we choose is another. I have learned that sometimes when we “fix” things for someone else and we inadvertantly keep them from learning whatever lesson they were supposed to from the experience then we take on a part of their karma. I don’t want to do someone else’s karma. I have enough of my own. I don’t know if my comment helped or just added more to the confusion.
     
    I, for one, totally get what Tremor is saying.
     

  11. Kris January 10, 2008 at 1:09 pm - Reply

    Patricia, how do you feel about Mother Theresa?

  12. Kris, I greatly admire Mother Tereza. I see the point that you are making. In talking about Karma, like Tremor, I am not saying don’t be active. Some circumstances call for it. Some don’t. I haven’t figured it all out yet and I certainly don’t have all of the answers. I see your point and I see Tremor’s too. Guess that is all of the Libra in my natal chart. Karma is just one of the ways that I have come to terms with my childhood incest. I hope that this whole conversation makes others think about compassion.

    • Kris January 10, 2008 at 2:33 pm - Reply

      In my opinion….the guide for what needs action or not depends on how selfless the action would be.

      Karma comes into play for you 100% but just accepting Karma is not what I feel the answer is. An example would be one who did not work through their past Karma and/or replace the debt with that which is good Karma, might be destined to live with the Karma over and over again in each lifetime.

      I’m not an expert, nun, spiritual leader or anything other than someone who studies, questions, and applies.

      Namaste,

      Kris

  13. Wade, being one of the three Monks, you could probably answer that better than me. I am still learning about karma. There is a lot that I don’t know.

    • tremor January 10, 2008 at 6:02 pm - Reply

      I’ve dealt with a lot of questions about karma through channeling. This isn’t necessarily the Buddhist take, so you can fill that in if you want.

       

      Karma is really about balancing. It’s nothing about punishment. You can balance painful experiences or pleasurable ones. It’s a way of learning, and also is a way to forge deep and intense connections. When the karma is outstanding and it’s not philanthropic (balancing giving someone else more choice than less), this can be quite uncomfortable because it’s an imbalance. Imbalances by their nature cry for attention. When it’s paid back, it’s a bond of love from the shared experience. This shouldn’t be underestimated – it is truly a loving connection that was generated as a result of the karma. That’s why often the most intense bonds of understanding come between people who have been through karmic exchanges – or even more than one.

       
      This could open a new can of worms. I could write an entire article on it. 🙂 More about the fact that punishment doesn’t exist in the universe!

       

  14. CG Walters January 10, 2008 at 7:17 pm - Reply

    Congratulations, Tremor…on the article and perspective itself, as well as the recognition of the value of this work.
    Thank you for sharing,
    CG

    • tremor January 11, 2008 at 8:25 am - Reply

      Thank you! (Thank you Karen too!)

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