The Opposite of Bullying is Empathy

The Opposite of Bullying is Empathy

The opposite of bullying is empathy.

Bullying is the mirror of the bad health of our society, communities and definitely schools.

The growing isolation and egoism of humans has led to a total lack of interest in one another and ever-greater alienation. Indeed, alienation is the consequence of insecurity, vulnerability, fear, mistrust and suspicion toward the others.

Alienation, along with the persisting financial crisis and its serious consequences in terms of job insecurity, has increased uncertainty and caused the fall of every positive role model, thus contributing to the decline of families, the annihilation of every human possibility of redemption or simply of every change needed to improve living conditions.

Together with inequality and social unjustice, alienation has also built a shared perception of an ever-greater impoverishment of social capital.

Everyone lives apart from the others, alone, close in a predominant particularism, walking in a solitary landscape, in a defensive individualistic closeness, far from any contact and relationship with the collectivity whatever it is.

We are living in times of exponentially widespread solitary socialization where there is no space to recovery time or attention for another human in trouble or in needs. In such a world there is neither space for solidarity nor space for do-able responsibility to overcome indifference.

And the consequence is that the stronger prevails over the weaker while the majority just bystand.

This is true everywhere, in the larger as well as in the smaller communities, in the workplaces as well as schools. Things are always the same, things aren’t different in the smaller level as if we stay at the mirror: they reflect exactly what happens at a larger or bigger level.

There is no space for empathy. Every group, and thus every collectivity reflects the same dynamics.

But Jeremy Rifkin foreshadows about the rise of the Age of Empathy, where he imagines the race to global consciousness in a world in crisis, under the sign of an empathy-altruism able to move it towards an empathic civilization.

What is empathy? Empathy is the opposite of bullying.

Empathy is about altruism, generosity, gratitude and compassion.

Empathy is about being humans, which means building and maintaining human relationships. This is empathy.

No empathy is possible without human relationships. All humans must be emphatic to each others.

There is empathy when everyone rediscovers the sense of his/her existence in a dialectic relationship with the entire group and the others’ lives and perceives his/her own inclusion as a dialectic mechanism intrinsically necessary and vital to the total entity existence as the group itself is.

It’s the superior interest of the combination and integration of single elements that is worth striving for, since it also enables that every single element’s individuality coexists and takes part to the collectivity entity without destroying the single elements, but by strengthening and empowering them.

In bullying it’s evident that human relationship doesn’t exist. What is common in all events of bullying it’s the absence of every relationship.

There is no perception of the severity of commitment to violence or to indifference, no conscience of offence, sin, guilt, and once such conscience emerges, it’s always too late and after a long way run.

The evil is everywhere, even masked as normality.

So bullying is everywhere even masked as ordinary behaviour.

Bullying is ordinary evil. Bystanding is the same.

All those who stay silent are guilty, no exceptions. None of them really cares about human relationship.

The internal code of every bullying event is the fact that the other doesn’t exist and there is always for everyone a turning point with a very hard juncture: to accept the group’s rule and become a group’s member as gregary or on the contrary to refuse, to dissent, to diverge from the group and become the group’s target as the enemy to be ostracized from the group itself.

Empathy and its relationship-related focus is a lifelong lesson that should be taught in all schools in order to prevent or fight bullying.

It’s always more effective to intervene within the group internal dynamics in order to promote a collective answer by valuing, teaching and instilling the value of relationship and empathy rather than stigmatising the single role, responsibility or psychology involved in order to find a psychological reason to bad behaviours as well as bullying.


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