pity vs empathy – what’s the difference?

Compassion and empathy are related concepts, but they have distinct meanings and implications:

Empathy :

Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another person. It involves putting yourself in someone else’s shoes, feeling what they feel, and seeing the world from their perspective.
It’s a cognitive and emotional experience that allows you to recognize and understand the emotions of others without necessarily sharing those emotions.
Empathy is about connecting with others on an emotional level, acknowledging their feelings, and demonstrating understanding.


Compassion, on the other hand, goes beyond understanding and sharing feelings; it involves a desire to alleviate the suffering or distress of others.
It’s an emotional response coupled with a genuine concern for the well-being of others. Compassion motivates action to help or support someone in need.
Compassion is often described as empathy in action. It not only involves understanding and sharing the emotions of others but also includes a willingness to take steps to improve their situation or alleviate their pain.

In summary, empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of others, while compassion takes it a step further by adding a genuine desire to help or alleviate the suffering of others. Empathy is about feeling with someone, whereas compassion is about feeling for someone and being moved to act in a way that makes a positive difference in their lives.