Krista Tippett on the problem with compassion

My new friend Patti seems to be a kindred spirit on many things, especially food and societal needs, so when she urged me to check out Krista Tippett, that was enough for me.

In Tippett’s 16-minute TED talk titled “Reconnecting with Compassion,” she argues that compassion has a public relations problem.

She explains that tolerance is not a virtue, it’s just putting up with each other, and that examples of compassion that feel unattainable turn compassion into something for something some saint — not us.

From a recent Huffington Post article about Tippett’s talk,

Tippett, an author and journalist, is the host of the nationally syndicated radio show, “Being” (formerly called “Speaking of Faith”). She spoke at a special TED Prize event at the United Nations in celebration of Karen Armstrong’s Charter for Compassion.

Tippett used her talk to detail several stories of individuals who have lived in a way that represents a deeper meaning of compassion and to suggest her own idea for a more substantive and attainable definition of the concept.

I second Patti’s encourgement to get to know Krista Tippett. Maybe grab a sandwich and enjoy your lunch with Tippett’s video today?

Some of the talk felt a little academic, a little theoretical, but when she reminds us that even the saints we hold up as examples — Dr. Martin Luther King, Mother Teresa — were flawed human beings, she inspired me. It was a lovely reminder that we don’t have to be perfect to make a difference, that just doing something to make your world a little better is worth doing.


Categories: lifestyle

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