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On compassion

I've spent the last 10 years in Asia and the Middle East. When I finally started visiting Europe again, I was shocked to see many homelessness again. I was shocked to see broken people everywhere. People looking really sad, like empty shells, their spirits gone. Homelessness especially stood out in UKs big cities. I could not comprehend how it could be that a country so rich could allow so many people to freeze sleeping on the cold wet streets in winter. It was so stupidly cold that I myself was done with it after only 10 min outside. What a luxury to even have that thought.

At the time I was working as a flight attendant, flying all around the globe to different cities. The experience felt like a quick overview god-birds view of how societies can play out. I’d see cities in first world, second world and third world countries. I tried to make sense of it. The similarities, the differences. I’d say life is pretty much the same everywhere. There’s rich and poor, and people mostly work during the day and play at night.

In some places life is cheap and in some it’s expensive. In richer countries there’s more options for leisure. But more or less it’s the same story everywhere. Among the differences, homelessness is what stood out the most to me. How could it be that poor countries didn’t have much homelessness? The only homeless people I saw in Asia were mostly the ones that got kicked out by their families or the ones with mental health problems. But even they would somehow get by and have community. The temples took care of them to a certain degree. They were functional. We could talk normally.

The homeless people in the UK though felt like broken souls. Whenever I walked past one of them I felt bad. Like really bad. I had money, so I’d give everything I received as pocket money for the layover. Then one day my boyfriend asked me why I think it's my job to give them money. Him coming from a 3rd world country, he struggles to see how people can become homeless in a country with so many recourses and jobs. I said I just feel bad when I see people suffering like that. But any answer I could give was not satisfying. It didn’t quite get to the point of why I care. Why do I give those coins if I know it won’t really change that persons life? My shabby answer at the time was that even if it doesn't change anything, it's better than nothing.

Today I realized why it is that I care. I care because even tough I can’t change it, and it’s not my fault, I still feel responsible. I feel responsible as society, I take so much responsibility that it extends outside of me to my whole human family. Even if I am not from the country that caused this society that allows for this to happen, I feel part of it.

I feel part of it when I look in that persons face and I see someone scared, I see someone who doesn’t feel safe. And I see myself in that. I see the general insecurity that capitalism and individualism has created in all of us. This is a feeling so deeply buried inside us, that most of the time we are not even aware of it being there. We only feel it when we think of going to pursue our passions. Quit our job and live off our savings for a couple months and just test out if our dream will reap fruits. If it will even work the way we imagined.

And then we bump into that other fear behind that fear that asks am I good enough or am I just crazy to even think my dream is possible. Every single person dreams a dream of their own greatness. All of us walk around with dormant potential until it is fulfilled. That’s where it hurts in me when I see souls so broken and disappointed and sad about the cruelty that’s possible in this world.

I recently saw Gabor Mates documentary on his work as a healer and coach with the homeless and addicts around the hospital where he worked as a doctor. Finally the questions I had all my life about homelessness and why it affected me so much got answered. I understood it all boiling down to trauma. Everyone wants to succeed. I feel compassion because I know that everyone will fight against their pain for as long as they can. Everyone wants to be well. That it is lack of love.

People are not responsible for what happens to them. Everyone is already trying their best. Sexual violation is the worst of possible traumas. And the worst kind is sexual acts against children. As an adult you can still blame yourself, you can still think maybe it was something I did, maybe I was looking suggestive. Maybe it was the clothes I wore.

But as a child, you are not sexual. Nothing about what you did could have invited anything sexual done to you by an adult. This is even more mind numbing. To then have to face the only thought left possible: that this is a world where such cruelty has a place. It exists. That there is such a degree of recklessness. That you can be faced with pure evil. This realization is the highest pain for a child. To be forced to conclude that this is a world without love.

That’s what I feel when I see my fellow sisters and brothers who have been through hell on earth. And yet, they are still there, gifting you with a smile. A smile still so full of the remainder of love they managed to safe keep, that it reminds you of the power of love. Love can never be destroyed and it overpowers all.

We are now in a first ever moment in the history of humanity where so many of us who have gone through trauma have woken up to the power of choice. We woke up and decided that we will heal. We will heal this once and for all. We will let go of the stories, we will choose to emit love and stop the perpetuation of pain. We will begin first, with ourselves. We will learn to fill our cups so full they begin to overflow. We learn to take care of ourselves. We will learn to get interested in ourselves. We will ask: What do I need? What do I like? What brings me joy? When do I have fun? What excites me? When do I feel loved? What makes me love? What do I like doing? What and who energizes me? When do I need being cared for? What is too much for me?

What would life be like if you did only what is best for you and know that that’s best for everyone else too?

Loving you 🙏💗🤗

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