It would be very difficult for the many people who are struggling to survive to put compassion for others above their own immediate needs. But for people like me, who have all that we need, and even more for those who have far more than they need, I believe there is an obligation to show compassion.
How could one feel that one's life is meaningful if it is self-centred?
Professor Harry Messell once said "I aimed to make the Earth a better place – and failed miserably". I'd be pretty sure that what he meant by that is that in spite of his best efforts the world did not become a better place. But the important thing is that he showed compassion in trying to make it a better place. And I'd be pretty sure too that the world was a better place for his having lived than it would be had he not lived.
For compassion to be fully and properly applied it must come with being well informed.
"The road to Hell is paved with good intentions."
The Australian Government and compassionThe Morrison Government certainly is lacking compassion in its continual and unjustified support of the fossil fuel industries that are causing so much damage to the world.
Paradoxical Commandments"People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
The kindness you show today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Be kind anyway.
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.
The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.
People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.
Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway."
Kent M. Keith The Paradoxical Commandments, 1968
More of my favourite quotes are elsewhere on this site.
On this site...Blood donation
Contribution to society
Some thoughts on death
Some thoughts on euthanasia
Self or all?, selfishness or altruism?
Suicide as a rational decision
To oppose wind power is to support fossil fuels, including especially, coal, a compassionate person would not do it.
Walking for climate change awareness: cleaning up the roadsides at the same time.
Why I support the local wind farm and why any other compassionate person would do the same.
External sites...Why Do Human Beings Do Good Things? The Puzzle of Altruism", by Steve Taylor; he suggested that the answer could be empathy.