Tragedies and Statistics

sl4A dear friend, upon visiting a slaughterhouse, commented on the fact that —in the presence of the enormity of the suffering inflicted on thousands— it is difficult to sustain compassion for the mass of sentient beings undergoing unspeakable brutality.

Why is it that an individual death is a tragedy, while the death of numberless beings —both human and non-human— is merely a statistic?

When faced with the unimaginable scope of suffering, we can feel overwhelmed and impotent, and our minds retreat into indifference as a defense mechanism.

Bringing our attention again and again to the suffering of each sentient being, instead of focusing on the magnitude of the slaughter, is the antidote to indifference.

About Tashi Nyima

I am a Dharma student, and aspire to be a companion on the path. I trust that these texts can offer a general approach and basic tools for practicing the Buddha's way to enlightenment. ||| Soy un estudiante del Dharma, y aspiro a ser un compañero en el sendero. Espero que estos textos ofrezcan a algunos un mapa general y herramientas básicas para la práctica del sendero a la iluminación que nos ofrece el Buda.
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