Discussion definitions of “empathy” and “empathetic”

This topic is very close to me in that one of my favorite people in the whole world is my 21-year-old niece who has Down Syndrome and I have much respect for her parents, sisters and other family members who willingly take on the opportunity to support others in similar circumstances.

When you listen to Soren’s speech (you can also Google and get the written text as well for reference when you make your posts) I am hoping that it will really make you think about so many things that your head will start spinning. I delivered a presentation at a teaching conference in Nevada about methods to teach empathy to students in college. I used this speech in the presentation. My youngest daughter, who graduated from the Univ. of Alabama, was the lead author on the paper. She is the person who shared this speech with me and also the paper she wrote on this topic for one of her classes. It is truly a powerful speech and well worth watching.

You can go in any direction you wish with this topic but link you viewpoint into learning how to be more empathic (look up the numerous definitions of “empathy” and “empathetic” if you are unsure and base your post around the definition you choose). You can also compare and contrast the concept of empathy with that of sympathy (big difference). This discussion will primarily be viewpoint based but you do need to discuss both sides of the issue (why people would want to and do use the word “retard” or any word that truly hurts another person and do they really know, understand and/or care, etc). This could actually be considered a form of bullying.

When you begin your work career (since we all have already begun our “life career”) I feel that all of us need to take a close look at who we are and who we want to be with regard to how we treat others. We all need to remember that we are judged in so many instances by how we treat others in countless situations (how we treat our enemies with regard to what we say about them, etc). Learning to become a leader in any aspect of our life (work, church, social, family, etc.) does require us to learn about empathy. I really look forward to reading your posts. 100-200 word.



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