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Empathy and Compassion
The latest news about empathy and compassion from around the world - CultureOfEmpathy.com
Curated by Edwin Rutsch
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Empathy Can Sometimes Motivate This Dark, Unjustified Behaviour

Empathy Can Sometimes Motivate This Dark, Unjustified Behaviour | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

Empathy has a dark side which is at odds with its image as a cure-all for the world’s problems.


Contrary to the common view of empathy as an emotion solely eliciting compassion and warmth, empathy can unexpectedly motivate aggression.


The result comes from a new study which found that when feeling empathy towards someone in distress, people are motivated to be more aggressive towards another, even when that other person is not to blame.


The study, published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, had people reading scenarios about a person who was in financial trouble (Buffone & Poulin, 2014).

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Occupy Empathy Tent at Berkeley

Occupy Empathy Tent at Berkeley | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

I set up the first Occupy Empathy Tent, this Sunday in Berkeley CA. I feel we need to do more empathic activism and create an Occupy Empathy movement that is open, inclusive and inviting to all. Occupy had a major problem in that it was/is based on an 'Us verses Them' philosophy which turns a lot of people off and actually supports the existing 'Us verses Them' cultural values.


When you get down to it, empathy really is the most revolutionary value, so let's build an Occupy Empathy movement. I'm looking at how might we design an Occupy Empathy movement and this was an initial prototype to test it out.


In Berkeley, this Sunday, they blocked off 17 blocks of one of the main streets (Shattuck) for pedestrians and bikes. I set up the tent next to a protest group which is protesting the closure of the Berkeley Post Office.

People came by and I told them about the Occupy Empathy, I did one on one empathic listening and we held 3 Empathy Circles. Carol came by and held one circles while I talked to people. People were very supportive and we had some very nice Empathy Circles where participants expressed how touched they were by the process.


I found we needed more step by step flyers to explain what Occupy Empathy is about and how to get involved. I'm now thinking of some next steps for Occupy Empathy.


What do you think? Any ideas?

seemore at/

https://www.facebook.com/EmpathyCenter/posts/854159597962037 


Edwin
http://cultureofempathy.com

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Study: Interventions to cultivate physician empathy: a systematic review

Study: Interventions to cultivate physician empathy: a systematic review | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

Author:

Zak Kelm

James Womer

Jennifer K Walter

Chris Feudtner


Physician empathy is both theoretically and empirically critical to patient health, but research indicates that empathy declines throughout medical school and is lower than ideal among physicians.


In this paper, we synthesize the published literature regarding interventions that were quantitatively evaluated to detect changes in empathy among medical students, residents, fellows and physicians. 


Conclusions: Physician empathy appears to be an important aspect of patient and physician well-being. Although the current empathy intervention literature is limited by a variety of methodological weaknesses, a sample of high-quality study designs provides initial support for the notion that physician empathy can be enhanced through interventions.

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How Empathy Can Block Creativity

How Empathy Can Block Creativity | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

We HSPs are famous for our empathy. We are also often creative. Often we are also creatively blocked. Is there a relationship? Can empathy get in the way of creativity and block it?


Empathy Is Precious
I personally treasure empathy. Not just for its humanitarian value, but because it is also a great tool of discovery. Empathy is a great way to learn about the world. It enables you to look at anything from another point of view.


It also helps you with all the information that your nervous system takes in.


Empathy helps you relate to the energy of each piece of information and if it is a multifaceted energy, you can engage all of it.

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What Causes Your Child to Become a Bully?

What Causes Your Child to Become a Bully? | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it
5. Children Who Lack Empathy
Finally, there are those children who come from wonderful, loving homes with actively involved parents who become bullies. These child bullies may simply lack empathy, like to dominate, are possessive and want power.


The wonderful thing about this is that empathy is something that can be taught.

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New Research from Momentous Institute Shows Empathy Predicts Academic Performance

New Research from Momentous Institute Shows Empathy Predicts Academic Performance | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

Momentous Institute, a leading provider of education and therapeutic services to children and families, released findings today revealing that students who learned to show empathy toward others experienced improved reading and math skills...


Key findings include: 

  •     For students in the three-year group, empathy was a positive predictor of reading test scores. For students in the four-year group, empathy was a positive predictor of both reading and math test scores. Empathy was a unique predictor even when controlling for general positive classroom behaviors (e.g., following directions, turning in work on time).
  •     The study suggests that students need certain levels of empathy before it becomes predictive of academic performance.
  •     Students exhibited improvements in social and emotional well being after one year of exposure to the same social and emotional health strategies. The research indicated further improvements in social and emotional well being for students who had three to four consecutive years of exposure to the strategies, compared to those with only one year of exposure.



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Study: Two systems for empathy: a double dissociation between emotional and cognitive empathy in inferior frontal gyrus versus ventromedial prefrontal lesions.

Study: Two systems for empathy: a double dissociation between emotional and cognitive empathy in inferior frontal gyrus versus ventromedial prefrontal lesions. | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

Recent evidence suggests that there are two possible systems for empathy: a basic emotional contagion system and a more advanced cognitive perspective-taking system.


However, it is not clear whether these two systems are part of a single interacting empathy system or whether they are independent. Additionally, the neuroanatomical bases of these systems are largely unknown. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that emotional empathic abilities (involving the mirror neuron system) are distinct from those related to cognitive empathy and that the two depend on separate anatomical substrates.


Subjects with lesions in the ventromedial prefrontal (VM) or inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) cortices and two control groups were assessed with measures of empathy that incorporate both cognitive and affective dimensions. The findings reveal a remarkable behavioural and anatomic double dissociation between deficits in cognitive empathy (VM) and emotional empathy (IFG).


Furthermore, precise anatomical mapping of lesions revealed Brodmann area 44 to be critical for emotional empathy while areas 11 and 10 were found necessary for cognitive empathy. These findings are consistent with these cortices being different in terms of synaptic hierarchy and phylogenetic age.  


The pattern of empathy deficits among patients with VM and IFG lesions represents a first direct evidence of a double dissociation between emotional and cognitive empathy using the lesion method.



http://brain.oxfordjournals.org/content/brain/132/3/617.full.pdf

Shamay-Tsoory SG1, Aharon-Peretz JPerry D.




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think2share's curator insight, October 13, 5:25 AM

On the finer workings of the Brain...

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Finding Empathy for Users: A Plain Language Model

Finding Empathy for Users: A Plain Language Model | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it
The BUROC model can help UX designers develop more empathy for users—and develop a strategy for reaching them.Applying Empathy in Design

When you empathize with the users of a website or system, you see things from their perspectives and not just your own. Through empathy, you can realize that not everyone knows who does what or what goes where in an organization. Not everyone knows the jargon, buzzwords, and insider lingo.


Russell Willerton

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Video: How can Husbands and Wives Cultivate More Empathy Toward Each Other?

Video: How can Husbands and Wives Cultivate More Empathy Toward Each Other? | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it
Find more from Dr. David at www.yourrelationshipdoctor.com.
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Five ways to foster empathy

Five ways to foster empathy | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

No matter what our capacity for empathy, when we become angry and defensive, our ability to empathise becomes limited. 5 ways to foster empathy in your relationship:

Give your partner genuine attention. Try hard not to focus on yourself or your feelings - or a need to defend yourself - whilst they are talking.


Someone has to go first. For empathy to work it has to flow both ways. Be the bigger person and do the giving first so that you in turn can receive.


You don't have to fix it. Often experiencing empathy can be confused with fixing the problem your partner feels. What your partner needs is that you hear them - not that you sort it all out.


You can get it wrong without it being the end of the world. The main point is you are trying - this is what matters.


Listening is not enough. We also need to make ourselves vulnerable by having the capacity to remove our mask and reveal our feelings.


Be compassionate to yourself too...

Jill Goldson

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Why Your Partner Needs Your Empathy but not Your Sympathy

Why Your Partner Needs Your Empathy but not Your Sympathy | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it
Sympathy is when you feel badly for your partner or when you're sad for your partner if something bad happened to him or her.


Empathy, on the other hand, is being able to actually understand your partner's perspective or situation to the degree that you can identify with what they are feeling and why.


If you sympathize, you feel for someone because of his or her pain. If you empathize, you feel his or her pain with them. For example, Kate doesn't just sympathize with Brian because he had a difficult childhood.


She is able to imagine what it must've been like to have a chronically ill mother and a depressed and withdrawn father. She understands that  Brian, given his family problems, lived with considerable uncertainty.


by Jeffrey Bernstein





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CCEI Offers Online Training that Promotes Empathy and Positive Behavior

CCEI Offers Online Training that Promotes Empathy and Positive Behavior | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it
ChildCare Education Institute® (CCEI), a distance learning professional development and certificate provider, offers SOC104: Promoting Empathy and Other "Prosocial" Behaviors as an online no-cost trial child care training course to new CCEI users during the month of October in recognition of Global Diversity Awareness Month.


Empathy promotes meaningful relationships and better communication and problem-solving skills. It also promotes greater understanding between people of different backgrounds. This course examines recent social research into empathy and other "prosocial" behaviors, as well as recommended strategies and practices for guiding young children through the early phases of empathy's long development process.


For more information, visit http://www.cceionline.edu 

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Empathy and the Psychology of Literary Modernism - Meghan Marie Hammond

Empathy and the Psychology of Literary Modernism - Meghan Marie Hammond | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

Empathy and the Psychology of Literary ModernismMeghan Marie Hammond


Published by Edinburgh University Press

  • Recovers early psychology, a discipline that has often been neglected in favor of psychoanalysis, as a framework for literary modernism
  • Provides a conceptual history of empathy that expands our understanding of the modernist world
  • Grants new insight into modernist technique by explaining how it relates to contemporaneous psychological and aesthetic theories on empathy
  • Prompts a rethinking of empathy, a capacity that is as widely misunderstood as it is celebrated


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Teaching Empathy to Young Children

Teaching Empathy to Young Children | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it
Empathy is often thought of as the ability to imagine life from the perspective of someone else. Yet for a Christian, empathy needs to be so much more.


You see, the Bible tells us over and over again not to just imagine what life is like for others, but to do what we can to reflect God’s love to them, serve them and point them towards God.

The earlier children are exposed to the ideas of empathy and serving, the easier it is for those ideas to become a part of the very fabric of who they are.


Parents often begin the process of teaching empathy quite naturally. You have probably  told your young child to “be gentle” because if they are not it hurts the other person. Or you may have told him not to “be mean” and hurt another child’s feelings.


by Thereasa Winnett

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What Radical Compassion Means to Author and Activist Joanna Macy - Yoga Journal

What Radical Compassion Means to Author and Activist Joanna Macy - Yoga Journal | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

Yoga Journal: Based on your work, what does “radical compassion” mean to you today?


Joanna Macy: Compassion is not something you have, like a virtue or cultivated quality. It is rather an expression of your larger being and can be understood as integral to your belonging or interbeing in the sacred living body of Earth.


Compassion boils down to not being afraid of the suffering of your world or of your self.  It involves being open to what you’re feeling about that suffering (grief, fear, rage, overwhelm) and brave enough to experience it. It helps to know that we are all going to die. And you have this precious moment to get close to the suffering and see what it has to tell you. You can’t heal something you’re afraid to get near. Compassion is what impels you to act for the sake of the larger whole—or put more accurately, it is the whole acting through you.

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(Design Thinking) The Importance of Empathy

(Design Thinking) The Importance of Empathy | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it
What values should schools and parents be instilling in youth? What role does empathy and caring for others play in educating future generations?

Innovation in Action believes that developing empathy is key to future success. In this post we talk about what empathy is, why it’s important, how it can be developed, and some key takeaways from our program and others we’ve spoken with about developing this crucial 21st century skill.


IDEO, a leading design firm, calls this type of work Human-Centered Design (HCD). “The HCD process begins by examining the needs, dreams, and behaviors of the people we want to affect with our solutions. We seek to listen and understand what they want” 

Eric T. & Elizabeth C. Jacobsen Foundation
Teaching youth the entrepreneurial mindset
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Digital Empathy is the Key to Helping Teens Online

Digital Empathy is the Key to Helping Teens Online | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

So what are parents to do? The first step is to cultivate what Above the Fray calls digital empathy.

Digital empathy is the ability to consider what teens’ lives are like now with pervasive technology, where every good and bad day has the potential to be broadcast to hundreds and thousands, and bullying is no longer confined to the schoolyard.


Issues that may seem trivial to parents—getting “likes” on social media, playing games for ten extra minutes, talking to friends on Snapchat—are amplified for teens in ways that are difficult for adults to understand without conscious effort.


By Shawna Malvini Redden

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Empathy and Altruism: Are They Selfish?

Empathy and Altruism: Are They Selfish? | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it
In 1909, the psychologist Edward Titchener translated the German ‘Einfühlung’ (‘feeling into’) into English as ‘empathy’. At the time, German philosophers discussed empathy in the context of our aesthetic evaluation, but Titchener maintained that empathy also helps us to recognize one another as minded creatures.


Empathy can be defined as a person’s ability to recognize, feel, and share the emotions of another person, fictional character, or sentient being. It involves, first, seeing the other's condition or situation from her perspective; and, second, sharing her emotions, and, in some cases, also her distress.


Empathy is often confused with pity, sympathy, and compassion, which are all reactions to the plight of others.


by Neel Burton, M.D.

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Catholic American Eyes in Korea: Living with Empathy

Catholic American Eyes in Korea: Living with Empathy | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

A Religious Sister, the head of a Research Center and a college lecturer, writes  In View from the Ark of the Catholic Times about mirror neurons. She mentions when watching a movie or a drama we are moved by the  same emotions the  characters express: crying or laughing. Why are these emotions, she asks, transferred to us?

Giacomo Rizzolatti an Italian doctor and his team noticed that when a monkey placed a peanut in his mouth the motor neurons would react, and this would also be true if the researcher put a peanut in his own mouth, the same neurons in the monkey would respond, and these were called mirror neurons. This was discovered with electrodes placed in the brains of the monkeys. She mentions that in California, scientists in 2010 discovered that humans have the same mirror neurons.


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Global Lives Project is a video library of life experience, designed to cultivate empathy across cultures.

Global Lives Project is a video library of life experience, designed to cultivate empathy across cultures. | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

The Global Lives Project is a video library of life experience, designed to cultivate empathy across cultures.


We curate an ever-expanding collection of films that faithfully capture 24 continuous hours in the lives of individuals from around the world. We explore the diversity of human experience through the medium of video, and encourage discussion, reflection, and inquiry about the wide variety of cultures, ethnicities, languages, and religions on this planet.


Our goal is to foster empathy and cross-cultural understanding.

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Gina Pacaldo's curator insight, October 14, 1:28 AM

Aha...to be or not to be a "global citizen?" For some a choice, for others -  not. Hmmm, let's check out this glimpse.  A great goal!

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Empathy! It’s good for business.

Empathy! It’s good for business. | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

So, one of the major points from the panel, and something I generally like to do but haven’t recently, is: GET OUT AND TALK TO YOUR USERS!


The panelists,

 Jenn Anderson (Intuit),

 Beth Lingard (AnswerLab),

 Nancy Dickenson (UX Consultant), 

Bethany Pickard (Google),

Hilary Karls (Uber), 

acknowledged that this can take time but also stressed how valuable it is to take time to connect with your team over the design of your solution, as well as your user, about the experience of your solution. It all fits into the way I’ve learned the player-centric, iterative design process, we use at work to teach non-technical students how to prototype games for impact.



==============================

the panel shared their stories of the intersection of empathy and product design 

==========


by JULI JAMES

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Does Literature Make You Empathic?

Does Literature Make You Empathic? | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

An article published last year in Science presented evidence that literary fiction makes readers more empathic than popular fiction; that is, it claims LitFic is better for you than mystery, romance, thrillers, or science fiction. Author Ransom Stephens offers a primer to prepare you to participate in Litquake's Does Literature Make You an Empath? event next week...


My aim here isn’t merely to convince you to mark your calendar; it’s to prepare you to participate in Litquake’s Does Literature Make You an Empath? event next Tuesday at the Mechanics’ Institute Library in San Francisco....


Litquake’s Does Literature Make You an Empath? panel is Tuesday, Oct. 14, 6:30pm at the Mechanics’ Institute Library in San Francisco. For more information, visit litquake.org.


by Ransom Stephens



Does Literature Make You an Empath?
http://www.litquake.org/events/does-literature-make-you-empath  

Our panel of LitFic and genre authors plus experts on the science of empathy (and you!) will investigate why or whether high-brow lit cranks up empathy more than a good mystery, romance, or space opera. For reservations: (415) 393-0100; rsvp@milibrary.org

Litquake Panel


Does literature make you an empath?http://www.milibrary.org/milibrary/events/litquake-does-literature-make-you-empath-oct-14-2014 
Our panel of fiction and genre authors plus experts on the science of empathy (and you!) will investigate why or whether high-brow lit cranks up empathy more than a good mystery, romance, or space opera. What techniques do writers employ to evoke sympathy or distain? What does neuroscience say about how we “mirror behavior?” Join this provocative discussion!


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Barbara Kerr's curator insight, October 11, 3:10 PM

How do we know what others feel?  Literature--which is basically storytelling afterall-- is one good way to feel what others are feeling.

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Silicon Valley’s Empathy Problem

Silicon Valley’s Empathy Problem | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

Facebook’s thoughtless dismissal of drag queens, altercations involving Google Glass users in city bars, tensions caused by the forceful and unapologetic transformation of San Francisco—perhaps an industry with more empathy in its intellectual toolbox would have been able to smooth over or even avoid nasty disputes like those.


But Silicon Valley has more to gain than just good will: It also stands to build better products. What is empathy—imagining yourself in the shoes of another—but the ultimate design principle?


The empathy deficit is all the more astonishing for being found at the heart of an industry so proud of being so imaginative.


image https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drag_queen 

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Warmer Parenting Makes Antisocial Toddlers More Empathetic

Warmer Parenting Makes Antisocial Toddlers More Empathetic | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

Loving care may be the best antidote to callous behavior in young children.

When parents act warmly and responsively toward young children who exhibit antisocial behavior, the children begin acting more warmly too.

That’s according to a new study in the Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, in which researchers examined whether there are differences in response to parental harshness and warmth among three-year-olds who exhibit “callously unemotional” behavior.


Now, however, there’s evidence that colder parenting may worsen this type of behavior, while warmer parenting might coax out a child’s empathy.


BY AVITAL ANDREWS 

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RJ Lavallee's curator insight, October 10, 3:57 PM

Shocked...not really.

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eBook: 25 Tips for Amplifying Empathy

eBook: 25 Tips for Amplifying Empathy | Empathy and Compassion | Scoop.it

As I mentioned in my 14 Customer Experience Trends for 2014, this year will be the “Year of Empathy.”


Given the focus on this key area, Temkin Group created the Amplify Empathy movement. So when we were thinking about our CX Day celebration, it seemed like a perfect fit for us to do something about empathy.

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