Collateral Compassion and Kindness

When you see a man led to prison say in your heart, “Mayhap he is escaping from a narrower prison.” And when you see a man drunken say in your heart, “Mayhap he sought escape from something still more unbeautiful.” -Kahlil Gibran (Source:

I believe there is much wisdom in these words, and in compassion. When I find myself short on compassion, a little wisdom often goes a long way to remedy the situation.

I rarely feel anger for more than a few seconds or minutes, and hate is an emotion I thankfully purged from myself long ago for completely selfish reasons.

But when I feel disappointment, it typically turns to understanding and then compassion (and sometimes even love on my better days) when I take the time to learn the whole story behind a person’s actions or situation.

I do all of these things for myself, as my life and my world are made better when I do them. If in the process, others recieve collateral compassion and kindness, I’m gladdened by it.


About russtowne

I'm awed by the beauty of nature and the power of love and gratitude. Some of my favorite sensory experiences include waves crashing on rocky shores, waterways in ancient redwood and fern-filled forests, and rain. My wife and I have been married since 1979. We have 3 adult children and 5 grandchildren. I manage a wealth management firm that I founded in 2003. My Beloved is a Special Education teacher for Kindergartners and First Graders. I'm a published author of approximately 60 books in a variety of genres for grownups and children.
This entry was posted in Compassion, Kindness, Love, My Beliefs, Quotes I Love, Words or Quotes I Believe I Coined but please let me know if you heard them earlier elsewhere and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Collateral Compassion and Kindness

  1. Yes it is so easy to judge someone but if you stop and think what brought that person to that point in their life you may not be so quick to judge

  2. It certainly takes away the knots in our stomach…when we choose compassion and trying to understand over hate or frustration….Good thoughts…Diane

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