|2.5 pairs of snuggling clothes pegs, close-up. by User:Kalan|
Many of us feel bad to see others suffering, a sad picture could pave a way for an ugly day while the opposite of it is also true. We laugh when others laugh even in cases where we may not be knowing the reason behind laugh. Why? Because we can relate with others, when we see someone in any condition, we suddenly start experiencing those situations within us.
Empathy broadens our definition of self
Research has proven that we react the same way to our own problems as we react to the problems of some of our very close people, for example, if a very close friend of a man is in trouble then that person would see the trouble as if it has fallen upon him that is, his reaction would have been similar in case the problem had fallen upon him instead of his very close friend. It is empathy that makes us to associate ourselves with certain ethnicity, nation or world at large. Empathy can make human experiences brighter and richer as an empathetic individual could experience many lives in a single life. Empathy can change the meaning and definition of happiness for individuals.
Are animals empathetic?
Yes, birds and animals can have empathy too, though certain birds and animals are more empathetic than others. Some birds or animals can form long term relations like that found in human society, showing that they too can relate and empathise with each other. The more social birds or animals are, the more empathetic they are.
Can Empathy make world a better place?
If by better we mean common good for more lives then yes, because the more empathetic an individual is, the more broader his/her experiences get, the more definition of self expands, the more one thinks at larger level or for common good.
Some interesting quotes on Empathy
“seeing with the eyes of another, listening with the ears of another, and feeling with the heart of another.” by Alfred Adler
What is the empathy deficit?” The inability of people to stand in other folks shoes. .. It’s hard to empathize with people who have different values than you” by Barack Obama
“writing is a sustained act of empathy.” byAndre Dubois
“There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.” byEdith Wharton
“Empathy is the greatest virtue. From it, all virtues flow. Without it, all virtues are an act.” byEric Zorn