If Mindfulness is the Hot Kid in Town, Compassion is his Cool Companion

By Emily Hine

Remember when you were in grade school and you had the same students in your class every single year? It became just a little predictable, right? But then one year, a new kid showed up. This kid moved to your town from some exotic place - like Colorado - and suddenly became the most popular student - the new hot kid in town. Well, that’s kind of what Mindfulness has been lately, particularly in Western cultures. Mindfulness has been hanging out in the East for many years - well thousands actually - always popular and beneficial to those who had the pleasure of knowing him. And then, he spread his roots to the West and now everyone wants to be associated with the seemingly “new” hot kid in town!

Well, as always happens, the hot kid needs a sidekick, a best buddy to keep him grounded when his popularity gets to his head. Luckily he’s Mindful and he chooses his friends wisely. And, Mindfulness chose Compassion, and she’s just as awesome, and even more empathetic. Compassion - the recognition and relief of suffering - has become the cool companion to Mindfulness. Compassion helps direct Mindfulness to take actions that are beneficial not only to his close friends, but to the whole school. And in return, Mindfulness takes Compassion wherever she’s needed most. They’re kinda like a modern-day Batman and Robin, nonviolent caped crusaders who together, make the world a better place!

Why personify Mindfulness and Compassion? Because we all have the innate capacity to be both mindful and compassionate, and it is through us that they can do the most good. But, we need to remember that we always have the choice to use these skills. And just like any super-power, when we use it, we are the best version of ourselves and that is both hot and pretty cool, doncha think?

This year’s 2nd annual online Global Compassion Summit - July 13th & 14th - is all about the camaraderie between compassion and mindfulness. Like peanut butter and chocolate, they are good on their own, but they are SOOOO great together! We’re going to talk about why that is, how it came to be and where these two sympatico friends are taking us next. They are, after all, not just words or personifications of our capabilities, but they are also movements that can and will lead us all to a better, more peaceful planet.

What’s ultra fantastic is that anyone can be a part of the mindfulness and compassion movements. It’s also a personal choice. I hope you’ll choose to join me for this year’s Global Compassion Summit. It’s an important, timely - and free - conversation with experts in the field including:

  • Sharon Salzberg – Author of many best-selling mindfulness books, and a woman who played a crucial role in bringing Eastern mindfulness practices to the West.
  • Vinny Ferraro - A nationally recognized leader in designing and implementing mindfulness interventions for at-risk youth, including incarcerated youth.
  • Dr. Robin Youngson – Co-founder of Hearts in Healthcare, an organization that is focused on bringing dignity and compassion to our broken healthcare systems. What?!
  • And many more who are applying compassion and mindfulness in their communities from Seattle, Washington to Belfast, Ireland! Note: For a complete lineup visit The Global Compassion Summit.

You’ll also hear from Barry Boyce, editor-in-chief of Mindful.org. Barry knows a TON about mindfulness and shares great insights in his article: 5 Things People Get Wrong About Mindfulness. You’ll also hear from Emma Seppälä, Ph.D, Science Director of Stanford University’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education and author of The Happiness Track (HarperOne, 2016). In this month’s Catalyst, Emma offers A Gift of Loving Kindness Meditation to support your meditation path.

I’m honored to be the host of the 2nd annual Global Compassion Summit and I’d love to have you there on July 13th & 14th. EVERYONE will be there - including Mindfulness, the hot kid in town & his cool companion, Compassion!!

P.S. To prepare for the 2016 Compassion Summit, you might appreciate this appetizer: Seven Lessons on Compassion - Ancient Medicine for Modern Day Suffering

Emily Hine is CEO of HineSight Consulting where she partners with businesses, nonprofits and social enterprises that share the goal of increasing mindfulness, compassion and peace on the planet. Emily is on faculty with The Shift Network Peace Education Programs, including the Peace Ambassador Training program. She is the Host of The Global Compassion Summit and a Certified Compassion Cultivation Training™ Teacher from the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education, Stanford University. Emily is trained in Nonviolent Communication (NVC) and mindfulness meditation. She is also an inspirational writer and public speaker. For more information, see www.emilyhine.com


Catalyst is produced by The Shift Network to feature inspiring stories and provide information to help shift consciousness and take practical action. To receive Catalyst twice a month, sign up here.

This article appears in: 2016 Catalyst, Issue 11: Sacred America, Sacred World