Kohut’s definition of empathy is a rigorous and critical one. Empathy is a mode of observation that gives one access to the thoughts and feelings of other human beings as subjects. Key term: subjectivity. Empathy is the foundation of intersubjectivity and that intersubjectivity has a temporal horizon extending from the past into the future.
Even in politics empathy is always empathy. However, politics brings along a whole new set of questions, issues, and challenges by with which empathy is confronted and to which empathy gets applied.
It’s gettin’ crowded under the bus. We confront the paradox of “embracing” our socially distanced neighbor. There is something about humans that makes us want to breathe on one another. Empathy? There is nothing that says an empathy trend has to be positive – but don’t try and hold your breath. Expanding neighborliness is the ultimate empathy trend.
Empathy flourishes in a space of acceptance and tolerance. But acceptance and tolerance have their dark side, too. People can be intolerant and unaccepting. Be accepting of what? Be accepting of intolerance? Be tolerant of intolerance? Yes, be tolerant, but… Read More ›
Empathy is good for your health and well-being: Empathy is on a short list of stress reduction practices including meditation (mindfulness), Tai Chi, and Yoga. Receiving empathy in the form of a gracious and generous listening is like getting a spa… Read More ›
The reader in Chicago may say that’s fine, but what has it got to do with the situation here in the USA? We do not have child soldiers or wide spread traumatized populations. Think again. Gangs are recruiting children of tender age not only as messengers but also as triggermen, because they know youngsters will face a different criminal justice system and process, generally more lenient, than adults.