What were you taught about compassion growing up? What did your family of origin teach you about compassion? Who deserved compassion? Who didn’t? What did it mean? Tough love? Tenderness? Did it feel healthy? Hypocritical? Holy? What early notions about compassion do you want to leave behind? Reclaim?
What does it mean to you to be a person of compassion? Maybe your call right now is to be more compassionate with your self. Maybe compassion for those “with less” has fallen off your radar screen. Maybe your challenge right now is finding compassion for those with more! Maybe you have a lot of compassionate feeling, but—when you are honest with yourself—not a lot of compassionate action. Take some time this month to think about what compassion means to you.
Have you ever been offered compassion when you most needed it? What did it mean to you? Share your story. Or have you witnessed a moment of meaningful compassion that made a difference to someone else.
Looking back, who has been a moral mentor for you? Whose life helped show you what compassion looks like, or helped you to find your compassion? Share their story with the group.
We’ve all got our compassion-destroying blind spots – those places where we are convinced we are right and others are wrong. When we can’t see someone else’s point of view or difficult situation because a prejudice is getting in the way. What’s yours? And what do you need to do to dismantle it? How is your partial thinking getting in the way of you giving compassion to someone who needs it?