Empathy and sympathy by Angela Caldin

I was pondering the other day on the difference between empathy and sympathy and having a bit of difficulty distinguishing between the two. Empathy, it seems, is a fairly modern concept encompassing the ability to understand emotionally and cognitively what other people feel. It’s the ability to see things from another’s point of view, and imagine yourself in the place of another. In essence, it is putting yourself in someone else’s position and feeling what they are feeling. Sympathy, on the other hand, is a feeling of pity or sense of compassion… Read More

Mindful parenting – discuss… by Emily Smart

I’ve never really been one for self-help in any capacity. What you can’t get solved over a pint or two and a chat with a good mate is not worth sorting really. And as for self-help books, I’d prefer a Lynda La Plante any day of the week. And so, in this cynical, sceptical and slightly resistant mindset, I found myself signed up for a six week mindful parenting course. Not for a full six weeks you understand, who would be minding my children while I was mindfully not minding them? No,… Read More

Angela’s ABCs – Empathy and Sympathy by Angela Caldin

I’ve been thinking for some time about how best to define these two words whose meanings are, for me, hard to pin down.  After much thought and consultation with friends, I’ve come up with the following: Empathy is the capacity to share in the feelings and identify with the emotions of others by knowing or imagining what it would be like to be in their situation: Years of working with victims of crime had given her deep empathy with them and the problems they faced. In his novels, Henry James showed extraordinary… Read More