We Are All of Us Soft Animals: Ruminations on Compassion

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.

“Wild Geese” by Mary Oliver

Image courtesy of Katelynn E. Carver.

I’ve been mulling rather consistently over the idea of compassion, of late.

Admittedly, my present preoccupation with the theme was sparked by a concurrent preoccupation with the “unfounded bomb threat” that occurred at my University in December. The stories that followed of the student charged in connection with the incident left me grappling with a number of concerns: the welfare of the student body, the welfare of the student involved, the policies and actions to be taken by the school, the resources in place to respond and how they would be implemented, and so on and so forth; and specifically, how compassion for all parties involved would come into play.

I’d wanted to write on all of this specifically at the time, but December-into-January proved a flurry of activity: my want for blogged-reflection, therefore, fell to the wayside.

And yet, the theme continued to pull at me.

(( Read More at State of Formation ))