Six Quotes About Compassion to Reflect Upon

Compassion is one of the values to which we should all aspire, due to the benefits it brings to our personal and social well-being. The following phrases will help you understand why.
Six Quotes About Compassion to Reflect Upon
Elena Sanz

Written and verified by the psychologist Elena Sanz.

Last update: 15 December, 2022

Compassion is one of the ingredients that make the world we live in a better place. Indeed, this emotion/inclination motivates you to prevent or remedy other people’s suffering. It also makes it easier for you to understand their circumstances and actions.

Putting yourself in the place of others and seeing their problems, joys, fears, etc., adjusts your value judgments and empowers you to provide more useful help to them. Throughout history, many important people have dedicated a few lines to the quality of compassion. Today, we’re going to mention six of their quotes.

Quotes about compassion

Fortunately, this attitude, like so many others, can be worked on. Although everyone has a different level of empathy, the will and intelligent management of your reactions can lead you to develop this compassionate disposition both toward others and yourself, allowing you to live more fully.

Therefore, we hope that these quotes will inspire you to make a start.

Hand with a heart of pink flowers

“A kind gesture can reach a wound that only compassion can heal”. (Steve Maraboli)

The first of our quotes on compassion is from a famous American writer. He reflects on the importance of human connection as a healing force.

In the face of emotional suffering, words of encouragement, listening, and company act as a soothing balm. After all, you don’t know the battles that people around you are fighting, but there’s no doubt that your kindness can make a difference to them.

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion”. (Dalai Lama)

Compassion is a gift that you can offer to others to alleviate their suffering. However, paradoxically, this attitude can also benefit you. That’s because harboring anger, resentment, judgments, and rejection toward others condemn you to extremely uncomfortable feelings. On the contrary, understanding, compassion, and forgiveness free you from those burdens.

“Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity”. (Pema Chodron)

As a rule, people who’ve suffered the most, and have managed to recover, are also the most capable of being compassionate toward their fellow men. In fact, compassion is nothing more than the recognition that we’re all human, and we all share failures, sufferings, and difficult emotions. No person is superior to another and it’s from the understanding of this truth that true empathy comes.

“If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete”. (Jack Kornfield)

If you’re determined to apply compassion, don’t forget to exercise it toward yourself as well. Because you’re as worthy and deserving of understanding, patience, love, and respect as other people. Therefore, you must treat yourself with dignity.

Sometimes, you maintain an internal dialogue full of judgments, reproaches, and self-punishment. However, it’s important that you’re able to detect it and start talking to yourself with kindness and consideration, in the same way you behave with others.

“A truly compassionate attitude toward others doesn’t change even if they behave negatively or hurt you”. (Dalai Lama)

It’s easier to be compassionate with people you love, or with someone with whom you have an affinity, even if you don’t know them very well.

Nevertheless, professing kindness and understanding toward those who hurt you or who take a stand against your interests can be complicated. However, it’s in those moments and in those relationships when compassion is most beneficial.

“There is no small act of kindness. Every compassionate act makes the world great”. (Mary Anne Radmacher)

You may be wondering how these quotes about compassion can be applied in your everyday life. First, you need to know that grand gestures aren’t necessary.

For example, a smile, a knowing look, or an accompanying silence can be enough to convey to the other person that you understand their pain without judging them. Furthermore, to explain that you’re by their side whenever they need you.

Girl hugging her friend, showing compassion.

Put these quotes about compassion into practice and your life will improve

The relationship you maintain with yourself and the links you establish with others are key to your emotional well-being. In both cases, compassion is a fundamental element. When you begin to apply it, you’ll experience tranquility and acceptance where before there was criticism or rejection.

The emotional connection that you’ll access thanks to compassion will allow you to discover the kinder side of situations.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Jazaieri, H., Jinpa, G. T., McGonigal, K., Rosenberg, E. L., Finkelstein, J., Simon-Thomas, E., … & Goldin, P. R. (2013). Enhancing compassion: A randomized controlled trial of a compassion cultivation training program. Journal of Happiness Studies14(4), 1113-1126.
  • Singer, T., & Klimecki, O. M. (2014). Empathy and compassion. Current Biology24(18), R875-R878.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.