1000 Voices for Compassion is a movement that tries to flood the internet with compassion. Each month they choose a theme, and on the 20th try to get as many people posting on that theme as possible.
I participated in the inaugural event and have been on the edges of the community though haven’t written anything else since. This months theme, though, spoke to me.
There are so many ways to explore this topic — connection is a key component to our lives. I’ve explored a number of directions to take this post, but I think what it comes down to is that by trying to forge some sort of connection with others we are able to create a foundation for relationship. New friendships rise out of finding those common interests, by connecting around something.
I believe we are all connected in some way. Core to my theological and spiritual understanding is the idea that everything is connected. I think it’s the reason so many of my created magic systems utilize an idea of threads, a clear connection between everything.
When we start to recognize these connections it allows us to have more empathy and understanding of others. It’s easy to see the connections with friends, but what about the connection with people you don’t know? It can be hard to see, but finding the connections can help us to understand others, help us to be able to interact with care and compassion. Sometimes it can be something small, something silly, but it’s a connection. And that connection may not grow into friendship, or even into liking the person, but it gives you a foothold to be able to show them compassion.
I think about some of the individuals I’ve worked with through the years. Some of them can be challenging, the arch-type I’m thinking of right now is the dreaded helicopter parent. I’ve encountered this type in most of the jobs I’ve had, those parents who are pushy, and seem to be running every small detail of their child’s life. It can be a challenge to interact with them, to get past whatever their actions (or tone… some of them are amazing at the “you can’t possibly know what you’re talking about” tone), in order to conduct the business that needs to be done — and to do so in a way that continues to be compassionate and kind. Then I remind myself that, while I don’t necessarily think their method may be the healthiest or best for the child in the long run, they are acting from a place of wanting the best for their child. Helping their child is also what I am trying to do, so there we have some place of connection to start from.
Connection can allow us to engage with others in the world in a compassionate way.