Compassion, Suffering, Emptiness

We suffer for others and in so many ways but we always do so alone.

There is nothing quite so distressing as to live in fear. It is a relentless slow burn of doubt that eats away at us inside and in its haunting persistence and metallic tang generates burdens, not necessarily of fact, but of an imagination that was always and already shaped by deep evolutionary history towards the darkness and sorrow of mere survival in what has always been an unforgiving world. My own deepest horrors of imagination – the razor-edged night-shades of my day living – are always of those terrible, corrosive possibilities that might befall those I have come to care for with a love so profound that it not only shapes me, it positively warps and flexes or twists and distorts my experience to the point of fatigue and hollow exhaustion.

It is true in this sense that I do not suffer at all for myself and that any authentic compassion and humanity is always oriented away from that Self that as a consequence is left empty and grey but also true that the suffering remains persistent here and as mine alone. Such, it seems, is life.

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