I realized I sounded as if I dismissed the actions we take to help one another when I said "compassion isn't chicken-soup kindness."
I didn't mean that. Corporal works of mercy are crucial.
What I meant was that if our helpful actions aren't grounded in our awareness that we all stand in the common muck of being human, our acts can come off as high-handed.
Like noblesse oblige.
You know. Charity.
Most of us don't want to receive charity, we want to exchange love.
Of course, if we're starving to death, we'll take whatever.
As Saint Vincent de Paul said,
"It is only for the love that we bear them that the poor forgive us our charity to them."
And here, because I've been awfully preachy lately, let me offer you the other Vincent De Paul, discovered when I did an image search:(Dear Lord, How have I ended up with a (small) series of posts about people in their underwear?
I tell ya, the things blogging shows us about ourselves.)