Gemilut Hesed – Practicing Compassion
The Practice of Compassion can take place on two levels, inward contemplation and outward action
Inward Contemplation –
Compassion is such an important value that it is important we learn to feel it towards everyone around us. Even people who seem to be giving us the most grief may be acting as they are because of some inward hurt they are feeling. If we can recognize their suffering, sometimes we can change the dynamic between us. On some regular basis, we may each want to pause and list through the people in our lives and inwardly offer them compassion. This could change the way we act towards them.
Outward Action –
Ultimately practicing compassion involves doing things on a practical level. Acts of care and compassion are essential for humanizing life and building community. Many examples are listed in a traditional Jewish teaching we have posted as “A Teaching for Fellowship.” Our acts of compassion can extend throughout our local community, our distance community and beyond.