We are called to be compassionate with others because we don’t know what’s going on in their heads. We don’t know their narrative, their experiences, their joys, their suffering. We might think we do, but this can lead us to unfair judgement and is never that helpful.
How we might react to a situation could be completely different to someone else. I was talking with a friend the other day and they were telling me about their stress at work. I was amazed by how calm they seemed to be about it. I said I would’ve been all over the place, but they told me: we all have our limits. Comparing ourselves to others doesn’t help anyone in the long run.
This perspective is helping me to more compassionate. In reality, we don’t really know what someone else might be going through and that can influence their reactions to certain things. This means we can be gentle and listen. In this way, we might begin to see that we’re not all that different from our neighbour.