It was raining on my head but it wasn’t the rain from clouds, it was the rain of a shower head cleansing me. It is in these moments of silent reflection that thoughts come to me. Most probably these thoughts come from somewhere deep in my subconscious. These are the moments when the conscious is blackened by the motoric that takes over during tasks that are completely automatic. Feelings of warmth, relaxation and safety reinforce this state.
Today was a day were I was reflecting on life and dealing with family affairs. I was particularly emotional triggered in a melancholy feeling of oneness with the universe. It was at the moment reflecting on empathy and the ability to be empathic.
My mother was a particularly empathic person, caring for many people in her life, not least her four children. I was wondering why we as children weren’t particularly empathic people. In fact being quite the opposite, very focussed on ourselves and our problems. Far too busy with thoughts of our own dire straits to be bother with other people and their problems.
I wondered why this would be the case. Having a very loving and caring mother who rarely, if ever, desired to be the middle point of any event or situation. I realised that to be an empathic person you need to have experienced the joy of caring for others. To put yourself at the disposal of someone in need. To push your worries and problems to the outside and listen to other peoples troubles. All these activities have to be actively experienced to understand and comprehend the joys of empathy.
Empathy is a not a science that you can learn from a textbook, there aren’t any hard and fast rules on how to be empathic to other people. And it was this realisation that made me think about us children.
Having experienced empathy on a daily basis did not make us empathic. Instead we assumed that empathy would always be there for us. There would always be someone looking after us and we won’t need to provide support to others.
Becoming adults the world changed from a very empathetic, loving world to a taking, wanting, greedy, cruel world. And perhaps we were lost in this world. Lost perhaps because our emotional needs weren’t being fulfilled. Lost because we always needed our mother for the empathy we had as children.
And now with the passing away of our mother, we are completely lost. Our only source of empathy has evaporated.
The well is dry and we search for a new well.