Carl Rogers, in the 1950s, defined some core conditions necessary for restorative justice to work. Rogers’ thesis was “in order to develop a healthy self-concept, we need to experience three core conditions in our relationship with those around us.” Richard Hendry, in his book “Building and Restoring Respectful Relationships in Schools,” identifies the three core conditions as empathy, unconditional positive regard and congruence.
Rogers asks the questions “Why do these core conditions matter?
How can children learn to understand how someone else feels – to be empathic – if they do not experience empathy from others?
How can children learn to value themselves and others as unique individuals if we cannot value them for who they truly are? How can we ask children to be honest and open with us if we are not offering them an honest reflection of who we are, what we think and how we feel?”
The primatologist sat down with MNN, sharing her thoughts on climate change, compassion and a dog named Rusty.
You've said your appreciation for animal sentience began with Rusty, a dog you befriended as a child in England. In what ways could you sense his sentience? Do you think growing up with pets is a good way for children to learn empathy for other animals?
I think it's desperately important for a child to grow up with a pet, providing there's somebody to make sure that they understand how the animal should be treated. And, you know, Rusty worked out problems. He worked out that if he was hot, he could trot down the road, down to the chine and have a little swim and come back. He even did pretend games. He was unlike any other dog I've ever had.
Mahatma Gandhi was one of the great empathetic adventurers of the twentieth century, a master in the art of looking at the world from another’s perspective.
His philosophy was embodied in what is known as “Gandhi’s talisman”, a moral code which calls on us to consider the viewpoint of those living on the social margins when making ethical decisions, and to ensure that our actions benefit them in some way.
The challenge he raises is to imagine ourselves into the lives of people whose everyday existence might be vastly different from our own, symbolised by “the poorest and weakest man whom you may have seen”.
Empathising, for Gandhi, is both an individual moral guide and a route towards social change.
On Saturday, the sixth annual TEDxBerkeley conference showcased the ideas and perspectives of speakers on the themes of “Wisdom, Compassion and Connection.”
The daylong conference, held in Zellerbach Hall, was divided into three sessions, each focusing on one of the three overarching themes. The lineup of 21 speakers and performances was selected through nomination, according to Lucky Ding, the event’s director of information.
The researchers studied the phenomenon known as "emotional contagion of pain," a key component of empathy which has to do with our ability to experience the pain of strangers.
Previous research by the same team has shown that both mice and humans have this ability, particularly when the person in pain is somebody they know. That research also showed that stress levels rose in mice and humans when they were around strangers, inspiring the researchers to investigate a potential link between stress and empathy.
In the first part of the experiment, the researchers gave mice metyrapone, a stress hormone blocker, which caused the mice to react to strangers in pain the same as they responded to cagemates in pain -- thereby suggesting a boost in empathy. Another test found that when the mice were put under stress, they showed less empathy towards their cagemates.
From left, Dominique Edwards and Emma Malzacher, both 12, pet Schatzi as he sits in on their compassion education class. School Resource Officer Rob Tallion of the Kearney Police Department brings animals into the classroom to help students learn empathy.
Dominique is the daughter of Abigail Edwards, and Emma is the daughter of Brian and Sara Malzacher.
As soon as teacher Kim Smith mentioned “belly buddies,” 16 little bodies dropped to the classroom floor and fell silent. The children arranged themselves in a circle on their backs. Smith gave each one a small rock — the belly buddy — to rest on his or her stomach.
“Watch it go up and down as you take your belly breaths and calm your body,” said Smith, who teaches 4-year-old kindergarten at Stephens Elementary School in Madison.
The exercise, done regularly in Smith’s classroom, is part of a “kindness curriculum” developed at UW-Madison. By helping children focus on what’s happening to their bodies, the hypothesis goes, they will learn to respond with more compassion and less anger when they’re frustrated
The empathy these children are beginning to show is really amazing for 4-year-olds,” she said. “If someone drops a bucket of crayons, practically the whole class rushes to help out.”
In a world of perfect images, competition and constant critiquing of everything from social behavior, body image (diet and exercise advertisements), celebrity and so on, it is difficult to step back and listen to your own inner voice.
Compassion and empathy for yourself are easily taught. We are social animals and we learn from social modeling, practicing and rehearsing.
Self-compassion, empathy, and self-esteem all have things in common, although they are not equal in outcome. Self-compassion and empathy require self-knowledge.
The overarching theme is to explore what is state of the art in Restorative Justice (RJ), today and what are future ambitions for engagement with other disciplines.
The workshop will provide the opportunity to bring together academic researchers from the RJ, Theatre and Design professions who are concerned in their existing practice with building empathy. How empathy is built by each profession and the methods they use are likely to be the subject of lively discipline exchange.
Simon Baron-Cohen, a professor of developmental psychopathology at the University of Cambridge, recently wrote a book entitled “Zero degrees of empathy: a new theory of human cruelty”. While I have only had the opportunity to read reviews of this book, the comments have prompted me to think of the role of empathy in restorative justice processes.
For those of you who try to implement the principles of restorative practice into your daily lives and interactions with others, I wonder how frequently you think about empathy (see below for a definition). In many circles, we talk about the offender taking “responsibility” for his/her actions. In work and community contexts, we invite people to be “curious” about the other, to withhold judgment.
A 16-month longitudinal study at a long-term health care facility with 185 employees, 108 patients, and 42 of the patients' family members was conducted to test how the employees treated the patients and families versus their colleagues.
The researchers found that there was lower absenteeism and employee burnout, as well as higher levels of employee engagement with their work with greater teamwork and employee satisfaction. In addition, the culture of compassion spread to patients and their families. Then, to see if the same positive results would be found in industries such as real estate, finance, and public utilities, they performed a second study involving 3,201 employees in seven different industries.
Again, a greater culture of compassion in the workplace led to greater work satisfaction, commitment, and accountability.
...What steps can we take to develop or increase a compassionate workplace?
1. Try a morning ritual where you literally set a positive tone for your day....
2. Look for what you have in common with others today. ...
3. Practice intentional, but random, acts of kindness...
4. Start a gratitude journal where each day you write three new things you are grateful for at work....
To develop empathy, you need to understand a person’s mind at a deeper level than is usual in your work. Since there are no telepathy servers yet, the only way to explore a person’s mind is to hear about it. Words are required.
A person’s inner thoughts must be communicated, either spoken aloud or written down. You can achieve this in a number of formats and scenarios.
Whether it is written or spoken, you are after the inner monologue. A recounting of a few example scenarios or experiences will work fine. You can get right down to the details, not of the events, but of what ran through this person’s mind during the events. In both written and spoken formats, you can ask questions about parts of the story that aren’t clear yet. Certainly, the person might forget some parts of her thinking process from these events, but she will remember the parts that are important to her.
In this paper, I will argue, contra Prinz, that empathy is a crucial component of our moral lives. In particular, I argue that empathy is sometimes epistemologically necessary for identifying the right action; that empathy is sometimes psychologically necessary for motivating the agent to perform the right action; and that empathy is sometimes necessary for the agent to be most morally praiseworthy for an action.
I begin by explaining what I take empathy to be. I then discuss some alleged problems for empathy and explain why some argue that empathy is unnecessary and sometimes even problematic in the moral domain. Next, I criticize a prominent alternative to an empathy-based morality. Finally, I argue that that empathy is sometimes epistemologically and psychologically necessary for doing the right thing and is sometimes necessary for moral worth. I conclude with a discussion of the important role of empathy in our everyday lives
More than 10 years ago, Home for Life Animal Sanctuary teamed up with St. Paul schools for a once a week program paired up with adult dogs. They jumped at the chance for the boys to learn to patiently train puppies.
Within just five weeks no one can ignore the difference. The boys were showing empathy and compassion translating to better results in their 6 hours of daily class time. Love and gentle nature are often not encouraged or even safe on the streets.
WOMEN are moody. By evolutionary design, we are hard-wired to be sensitive to our environments, empathic to our children’s needs and intuitive of our partners’ intentions.
This is basic to our survival and that of our offspring. Some research suggests that women are often better at articulating their feelings than men because as the female brain develops, more capacity is reserved for language, memory, hearing and observing emotions in others...
When we are overmedicated, our emotions become synthetic. For personal growth, for a satisfying marriage and for a more peaceful world, what we need is more empathy, compassion, receptivity, emotionality and vulnerability, not less.
We need to stop labeling our sadness and anxiety as uncomfortable symptoms, and to appreciate them as a healthy, adaptive part of our biology.
Many studies have investigated whether or not there is a link between video games and violence, but few have looked at the bigger picture. What is the correlation between video games and empathy?
Since games put us, as players, in the role of characters who are not ourselves, asking us to understand their situation and the problems that they face, they have the potential to teach us about how to empathize with others.
While many gamers have anecdotal evidence about games that made them feel a character's pain, there's a disappointing lack of formal studies into that side of the question.
The connection between the face and ethical behavior is one of the exceedingly rare instances in which French phenomenology and contemporary neuroscience coincide in their conclusions. A 2009 study by Marco Iacoboni, a neuroscientist at the Ahmanson-Lovelace Brain Mapping Center at the University of California, Los Angeles, explained the connection: “Through imitation and mimicry, we are able to feel what other people feel. By being able to feel what other people feel, we are also able to respond compassionately to other people’s emotional states.”
The face is the key to the sense of intersubjectivity, linking mimicry and empathy through mirror neurons — the brain mechanism that creates imitation even in nonhuman primates.
The connection goes the other way, too. Inability to see a face is, in the most direct way, inability to recognize shared humanity with another. In a metastudy of antisocial populations, the inability to sense the emotions on other people’s faces was a key correlation.
Feeling stuck is hard. You want to move forward, but you can’t find the motivation to change. Or perhaps you don’t know how to change! Even in therapy, the very place you expect to see growth, you end up spinning your wheels. Nothing seems to be working, and you begin to wonder how you will ever make progress.
What do you say to yourself when you are mired in uncertainty and disappointment? Do you call yourself a failure, stupid, or worthless? Do you question the value of your dreams or life in general? Or do you offer yourself patience and kindness
By creating some form of homeostasis within the AGI, Shanahan believes that the potential of AI can be realised without destroying civilisation as we know it.
For an AGI to be able to understand the world in the same way as humans do it would involve certain pre-requisites, including the capacity to recognize others, the ability to form relationships, the ability to communicate, and empathy.
One way of creating a human-like machine is through mimicking the human brain in its design, as Shanahan pointed out, "we know the human brain can achieve this". Scientists are, however, still some way from even mapping the brain, let alone replicating it.
As a business leader, here are some ways to harness empathy and make it your superpower, too:
1. Use empathy to create your vision. Empathy is commonly explained by the phrase "walk a mile in someone else's shoes." But it's more than just that. It's walking side by side with someone, listening with intent, and using the knowledge gained to create your vision.
2. Use empathy to become mission-driven....3. Use empathy to inspire loyalty....4. Use empathy as a your default communication tool....
Empathy is poised to become the buzzword of the 21st century– the defining trait of our social and political evolution. Empathy will be to this century what “rights” was to the 20th century and “equality” was to the 19th century.
As a word, a concept, and a goal empathy is omnipresent. From parenting newborns to teaching college students, to training doctors and employees of profit-driven ventures, to effecting radical political and social change, empathy is becoming the prevailing philosophy.
Organizations, such as Roots of Empathy and Seeds of Empathy, design and bring to schools programs aimed at teaching primary school children and preschoolers to have more empathy
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