Mudita is one of those untranslatable words I was talking about in issue #35. A word that does not exist in most languages but describes such a foundational aspect of life. The closest term to describe this word in English is Sympathetic Joy. But, another word is also starting to emerge in English and in French: Compersion. A single word to cover this Buddhist concept that means being happy for someone else’s happiness. Finding joy in someone else’s joy, especially when you’re not involved, represents such a high level of wisdom and peace. But, why is being happy for others so challenging? Why can’t I stop myself from feeling envy or jealousy? Why can’t I stop comparing my life to the life of others? It all goes down to us. You can’t be happy for someone else if you can’t experience joy for yourself first. The same principle applies for all kind of feelings. For example, it’s gonna be hard to have a healthy relationship with your partner if you don’t like yourself first and the same will apply to a work relationship with a colleague if you can’t be proud of your work in the first place. We all need to cultivate our own individual joy in order to be able to feel joy for someone else. In her article, Christiane Wolf shares three steps to find the path to Compersion: (1) Relearn how to practice joy for yourself, (2) Make use of your qualities for others, and finally (3) Connect with other people’s joy.
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