Saturday, April 15, 2017
New Words (from internet) If you google a word, you will be sent to a site with definitions and examples. Here are two I discovered today:
outlier––"one who stands outside the norms."
"someone who stands apart from others of his or her group, as by differing behavior, beliefs, or religious practices: ex., scientists who are outliers in their views on climate change.
Synonyms: nonconformist, maverick; original, eccentric, bohemian; dissident, dissenter, iconoclast, heretic; outsider."
"Outlier" can apply to a mathematical number that does not fit neatly into a graph of similar values. It could also be an animal that does not follow the herd. I once bought a woolen comforter from the woman who raises sheep. When I checked the various samples, I could pick up their energies and they each spoke to me: "I will make you happy." "I will always be faithful." "We can have a lot of fun together." But I chose Samantha, a loner who never stayed with the flock, but spent each day by herself on a nearby hill, and only came down at dinner time. I knew she was the one for me.
Those undergoing spiritual transformation are often dismayed to discover that they are now "outliers," for they are no longer included as part of the familiar group (family, friends, colleagues) but indeed are now "different" in the eyes of others and society. They feel like outcasts, those unassimilated, lost alone in the world. Hopefully they will eventually meet other such "outliers" and will no longer feel so alone. Even a confidante will help.
Most great artists (poets, writers, painters and such) as well as inventors, scientists and other way showers are outliers, those who see beyond the stereotypes and the conventional forms. They thus create a new reality and offer us a new way of seeing.
The outlier child has a difficult journey. She is not part of the crowd and feels isolated from her peers. She may well be the one to make a significant contribution to society when she grows up. I love a line from Flannery O'Connor. In one of her stories, a mother, viewing her "weird" daughter, reflects ruefully, "Every year she gets more like herself and less like other people."
compathy––empathy is when one understands and is concerned for another's pain. Compathy is when one absorbs the pain into one's own body.
from J. M. Morse:
Compathy occurs when one person observes another person suffering a disease or injury and experiences in one's physical body a similar or related distress. Thus, compathy is the physical equivalent to empathy. . . .Triggers for the compathetic response . . . include observing the suffering, hearing, or reading--or even thinking about--descriptions of the symptoms.
Whereas empathy refers to the projection of oneself into the personality of another in order to achieve better understanding, and sympathy describes an affinity of feelings between people, compathy refers to feeling with another person.
Peter Smagorinsky and Joel Taxel, "The Discourse of Character Education"
I find this notion of particular interest, since it applies to me. I always longed to be an energy healer, but refrained because I indeed was one who literally felt in my own body the distress of another. If they had a headache, my own head began to hurt. It they were experiencing backache, I too began to feel pain in my back. I understand now why some people can be nurses or doctors or healers of various kinds without experiencing similar symptoms themselves. I have learned to be less sensitive over time, and try to be empathetic and not copathetic.
Think what the world would be like if we were totally "copathetic" with the result that those who inflict pain on others felt it in their own bodies. However, we would not wish to feel the pain of the ill or dying.