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Sun May 6, 2018, 03:50 PM

Empathy has to flow both ways

You can't have empathy if you're not willing to give it back.

I think many of us at DU expect empathy but are wholly unable or unwilling to offer any in return.

I think maybe I have finally put my finger on the real issue that I have with this place, generally. At one time I did get empathy here and still find it in some. But then there are some hard liners who will go so far as to use my expectations against me.

That's a shame.

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 49 replies Author Time Post
Reply Empathy has to flow both ways (Original post)
Cary May 2018 OP
elleng May 2018 #1
Cary May 2018 #3
elleng May 2018 #4
elocs May 2018 #2
Cary May 2018 #7
LakeArenal May 2018 #5
Cary May 2018 #6
LakeArenal May 2018 #9
Cary May 2018 #17
Heartstrings May 2018 #8
elocs May 2018 #10
Cary May 2018 #11
elocs May 2018 #13
brer cat May 2018 #15
Cary May 2018 #16
elocs May 2018 #18
Cary May 2018 #19
brer cat May 2018 #20
Cary May 2018 #21
Boomerproud May 2018 #12
elocs May 2018 #14
Gothmog May 2018 #22
NCTraveler May 2018 #23
Cary May 2018 #24
NCTraveler May 2018 #25
Hortensis May 2018 #30
Cary May 2018 #31
Behind the Aegis May 2018 #26
vlyons May 2018 #27
Cary May 2018 #32
vlyons May 2018 #34
Cary May 2018 #35
vlyons May 2018 #44
Cary May 2018 #45
vlyons May 2018 #48
Cary May 2018 #49
EffieBlack May 2018 #28
Cary May 2018 #36
Cary May 2018 #37
EffieBlack May 2018 #39
Cary May 2018 #41
Cary May 2018 #42
EffieBlack May 2018 #38
Cary May 2018 #43
WhiteTara May 2018 #29
Cary May 2018 #33
JI7 May 2018 #40
Cary May 2018 #46
Cary May 2018 #47

Response to Cary (Original post)

Sun May 6, 2018, 03:56 PM

1. You're right kind of, it SHOULD flow both ways,

and too often doesn't do that here.

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Response to elleng (Reply #1)

Sun May 6, 2018, 04:05 PM

3. It's been a disappointment

Smart people should be empathetic. We are in this together.

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Response to Cary (Reply #3)

Sun May 6, 2018, 04:09 PM

4. Yes indeed we are in this together.

I and others may expect too much from 'smart' people; I'm often disappointed.

' the feeling that you understand and share another person's experiences and emotions : the ability to share someone else's feelings.'

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Response to Cary (Original post)


Response to elocs (Reply #2)

Sun May 6, 2018, 04:19 PM

7. Empathy is one of my elements when I define liberalism

We are about fairness and spreading power around. We are.about enlightened self interest, as opposed to Ayn Rand/"conservative" rational selfishness.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Sun May 6, 2018, 04:13 PM

5. Yes a lot more empathy...

A lot less real or faux outrage.

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Response to LakeArenal (Reply #5)

Sun May 6, 2018, 04:16 PM

6. I can get the outrage from #fakepresident cult followers

Right?

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Response to Cary (Reply #6)

Sun May 6, 2018, 04:44 PM

9. Absolutely. AND I didn't need any "explaining".

Hope we fight this hard on Nov. 2018. Less than Six months away ?

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Response to LakeArenal (Reply #9)

Sun May 6, 2018, 07:16 PM

17. "Explaining"

Thanks for giving me this thought.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Sun May 6, 2018, 04:35 PM

8. Yes it is a shame....

Generally I think there's more empathy on du than other sites. Lately I'm sorting some questionable threads dealing with empathy and tolerance. It's for me to sort, I certainly don't need help.....Just in case anyone feels the need to question what I'm sorting through my head. Just don't go there......my head, my thoughts.
FWIW.....We need more empathy across the board.

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Response to Cary (Original post)


Response to elocs (Reply #10)

Sun May 6, 2018, 05:01 PM

11. That's a bit more dramatic than what I referred to.

But ok. I'll take it.

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Response to Cary (Reply #11)


Response to elocs (Reply #13)

Sun May 6, 2018, 06:21 PM

15. Must we have equality of empathy?

I have great empathy with, for example, a poor single parent struggling to balance work and family obligations but not with Vanessa Trump. Does that mean I have to turn in my liberal card? Or does it make me a "bad" liberal? What if I have compassion but not empathy? I think in your example, I might find compassion for the young man as he faces certain death, but I sure don't think I would feel empathy.

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Response to brer cat (Reply #15)

Sun May 6, 2018, 07:14 PM

16. No one has to anything

We don't have to form a strong coalition to defeat the fascists. I don't think anyone is directing us to that end. Are they?

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Response to Cary (Reply #16)

Sun May 6, 2018, 07:18 PM

18. "No one has to anything" Right, neither do I. I'm out.

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Response to elocs (Reply #18)

Sun May 6, 2018, 07:30 PM

19. I am wrestling with something that has nothing to do with you or what you have said

I didn't intend to offend you and I'm sorry if I did.

My point was that we don't have to be smart or nice or anything efficacious or good. I was not suggesting that we should not be good. Quite the contrary.

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Response to Cary (Reply #16)

Sun May 6, 2018, 08:37 PM

20. Of course not.

I was actually responding to "self-deleted" who seemed to be making the point that we must have empathy for all, including men who like to target shoot with live girls. I have an issue with that concept and was trying to clarify.

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Response to brer cat (Reply #20)

Sun May 6, 2018, 08:43 PM

21. Ugh

I know.

I'm having a tough time with some of the stuff going on here. Sorry.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Sun May 6, 2018, 05:09 PM

12. True. The same could be said for respect.

That is not just a problem on DU.

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Response to Boomerproud (Reply #12)


Response to Cary (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2018, 03:21 PM

22. K&R

This is the DU member formerly known as Gothmog.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2018, 03:32 PM

23. It does not have to flow both ways.

 

I have shown empathy to people I know would never return it. That is not a metric that is important to showing empathy. Showing empathy is personal, not collective.

I have seen and shown a lot of empathy around DU. It's not needed across the board.

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Response to NCTraveler (Reply #23)

Mon May 7, 2018, 03:46 PM

24. I'm sick and tired of the non-constructive conflict

If you have a better solution I defer to you, but this current thing that we do to each other here has to be the dumbest thing I've ever seen.

I want to fight Reublicans, not people here.

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Response to Cary (Reply #24)

Mon May 7, 2018, 03:56 PM

25. Education is the solution.

 

Not always pretty how it happens. Doesn't always work, either.

I agree with you about the non-constructive conflict comment. It is completely different from the previous metric of empathy.

People here are going to fight. That is a fact. We have serious reasons to fight as well. I'm aware of a number of racists and blatant sexists who post here regularly. While some think this board is some kind of monolith, it is anything but.

"I want to fight Reublicans, not people here."

Some here are every bit as bad as Republicans. One current poster spent the who general election last time on another board promoting the Clinton email "scandal". Don't think that because they post here that they are your friends. Women and the LGBT community know that all too well around these parts.

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Response to NCTraveler (Reply #25)

Mon May 7, 2018, 04:46 PM

30. Agree empathy is an individual thing that occurs within a person.

If empathy was some kind of deal to be struck, it wouldn't be empathy.

Empathy has no costs and no conditions to be met, only our ability to imagine oneself as another person in order to think and feel as he does. It certainly does not require agreement or approval, only the ability and willingness to acquire this depth of understanding of other people.

Most of the time we don't try, of course. Plus, understanding people we want to abuse has a way of taking the fun out of indulging our own faults. And some leaps are just too big, like into Trump's mind.

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Response to NCTraveler (Reply #25)

Mon May 7, 2018, 05:56 PM

31. I get that but I have been wedged

Not with racists. I prefer to be wedged from racists.

I am wedged from good friends. That's unacceptable.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2018, 04:00 PM

26. True, but I think it was killed in a murder-suicide with "Civility".

Like you, I see some people who are very open, accommodating, and willing to learn, then there are the rest.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2018, 04:18 PM

27. So do you expect to get something back for your generosity?

Well it's no wonder that you get disappointed. Boddhicitta is loving kindness that is generated for the benefit of others without the expectation of getting anything in return. The expectation of getting something in return is a selfish aim, and contaminates the intention of doing a good deed for others.

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Response to vlyons (Reply #27)

Mon May 7, 2018, 05:58 PM

32. What makes you think empathy is generosity?

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Response to Cary (Reply #32)

Mon May 7, 2018, 06:24 PM

34. What makes you think that it isn't?

Generosity isn't just about giving alms to the poor. There are such ideals as a generosity of compassion, generosity of spirit, generosity of forgiveness, generosity of loving kindness. The point is that expecting to get something back for being a kind person defeats the altruistic aspiration.

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Response to vlyons (Reply #34)

Mon May 7, 2018, 06:35 PM

35. Look up enlightened self interest

That's not rational selfishness which is Ayn Rand's perversion of the ideology our nation was founded on. Our founders knew that the general welfare referred to in the Preamble of the Constitution was no zero sum game. Our function is to enable everyone to reach their own potential. That requires empathy, one of the most noble of human endeavors, scoffed at and eschewed by Rand.

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Response to Cary (Reply #35)

Tue May 8, 2018, 12:40 AM

44. You don't need to teach me about empathy

I'm a Buddhist. We value altruistic compassion far above selfishness.

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Response to vlyons (Reply #44)

Tue May 8, 2018, 08:02 AM

45. This is a discussion board

I don't need to be here at all. My presence is optional and I discuss as I see fit within the rules. Need has nothing to do with it.

Buddhist or not if you can glean something from my words that's great. If you cannot then it's no skin off your nose.

I am more into Taoist philosophy, myself. Being an empathatic Buddhist perhaps you know what that means.

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Response to Cary (Reply #45)

Tue May 8, 2018, 08:28 AM

48. good for you

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Response to vlyons (Reply #48)

Tue May 8, 2018, 08:54 AM

49. Maybe.

Maybe not.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2018, 04:21 PM

28. Empathy doesn't require, nor should a truly empathetic person expect, reciprocation or

complain when they donít get it.

Thatís the whole point ...

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Response to EffieBlack (Reply #28)

Mon May 7, 2018, 06:39 PM

36. Says who?

How can I empathize and help you if you're self destructive? Have you ever enabled an addict?

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Response to Cary (Reply #36)

Mon May 7, 2018, 06:44 PM

37. I should add...

An addict lacks empathy. A really sick person will care only about their next fix and will unflinching I use your empathy to get it. It's not personal. That's part.of the disease and part of the horror.

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Response to Cary (Reply #37)

Mon May 7, 2018, 06:56 PM

39. Then why do you expect empathy to be returned and feel slighted that it didn't happen?

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Response to EffieBlack (Reply #39)

Mon May 7, 2018, 07:07 PM

41. Who said I feel slighted?

Clearly you don't understand my point of view. I am trying to relate something to you that I feel that you don't understand.

All I want here is to not be wedged. I have told you that, yet you tell me that I feel slighted.

I understand your perspective. I appreciate what you're saying. I am better off for it.

You don't need to agree with me but you do need to understand what I am trying to tell you.

We have a guy in the White House who feels there are some good Klansmen and Nazis. Do you really need to be bickering with me?

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Response to EffieBlack (Reply #39)

Mon May 7, 2018, 07:09 PM

42. And I didnt mean to infer you are self destructive or an addict

Sorry. I meant that as an example only.

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Response to Cary (Reply #36)

Mon May 7, 2018, 06:54 PM

38. That's a different issue

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Response to EffieBlack (Reply #38)

Mon May 7, 2018, 07:12 PM

43. It's an example that illustrates why your point is not well taken.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2018, 04:41 PM

29. empathy doesn't flow. One is either empathic

or one is not.

Here's a big hug. I don't know what's going on, but this is an online board with thousands of people and not every one is nice. You just have to be yourself in all situations.

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Response to WhiteTara (Reply #29)

Mon May 7, 2018, 06:00 PM

33. What's going on is that we have a fascist in the White House,

And scoundrels and traitors running Congress, and we are being wedged over race when we really don't disagree.

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Mon May 7, 2018, 07:00 PM

40. No. Empathy doesn't have to flow both ways

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Response to JI7 (Reply #40)

Tue May 8, 2018, 08:06 AM

46. You insist on living in a spiritually dualistic world?

When people see some things as beautiful,
Other things become ugly.
When people see some things as good,
Other things become bad.

Tao te Ching

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Response to Cary (Original post)

Tue May 8, 2018, 08:15 AM

47. It all flows. You must let go to allow it

Do you want to improve the world? I don't think it can be done. The world is sacred. It can't be improved. If you tamper with it, you'll ruin it. If you treat it like an object, you'll lose it. There is a time for being ahead, a time for being behind; a time for being in motion, a time for being at rest; a time for being vigorous, a time for being exhausted; a time for being safe, a time for being in danger. The Master sees things as they are, without trying to control them. She lets them go their own way, and resides at the center of the circle.

The center of the wheel is the most important part, like the center of a vessel. The center is empty.

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