An experience in compassion


Yesterday husband, kiddo and I went out with my parents. It’s their last couple of days here and we just wanted to go around the city. We first went to the farmer’s market near the castle. After visiting the stalls and buying a few things here and there, we settled down to chit-chat with a cup of coffee.

A few minutes later, a young girl came up with her accordion box and started playing. On the inside of her box it was written, “Playing back student loan”. She played for some time smiling and nodding at the tourists and people passing by. No one played much attention to her though some people smiled back.

Girl playing accordion to pay back student loan

Then came a woman with her little daughter. She stopped in front of this girl. For a couple of minutes she explained something to her daughter in soft words often pointing at the girl with the accordion. She then took out a few quid and asked her daughter to put them into the box.

I was so much arrested with this scene. That moment epitomised for me the very essence of compassion and empathy. I am sure after that conversation the little girl will be able to experience and feel for others who are having a hard time. She will be able to imagine what it would be like to be in that person’s shoes.

I know my son is too small to have understood what all this was about and I am sure there are others ways in which I could teach him compassion. This incident was another lesson in compassion and I was thrilled to experience it especially after just having read Zephyr’s post about it.