Self empathy is to a large degree developed through the child-mother bonding process, in that it is the environment that the new born grows in that is most crucial to her or his development. Environment means the psychological, emotional, material realities into which the child is born.
In utero, the child is in a fully empathic reality, connected to her or his mother in profound ways. They are as one. The child in utero is sensing not only her own world, but that of the mother as well. The evidence is clear : the child is learning all the time, and that learning corresponds to how their physiology and neurology developes.
Thus the child, after birth has to learn and experience empathy as a separate being, and there are key experiences that are biologically mandated to help the new born to develope self empathy, and empathy for others. Prescott's 1975 Paper Body Pleasure and the Origins of Violence set out some of the parameters for this development, and his work has been corroborated by researchers ever since.
What science is now finally 'proving' has been a working knowledge for the human species for 6 million years, and is a working biological reality for many mammals. Our bodies know this. Mothers bodies sense this.
If a child is not given those key experiences, if the relationship between mother and child is in any way disrupted at these crucial stages of early life, then the fundamentals of self empathy, and with that empathy for others are missed out on, and what flows from that loss is what we see all around us, on our daily news : the urge to Power, to control others to meet one's perceived needs.
What baby would not be angry at not being met with the experientials our biology has mandated? Think of the child left to cry himself to sleep in another room, to scream and cry until exhaustion brings sleep. Is this not a common practice in our culture? What of the resignation, the suppression of that rage, the loss of self empathy which ensues from that suppression which is the outcome of such a practice?
Empathy is a multi-sensory ability. Thus the mind, the intellect, the 12 senses, insight, intuition, mirror neurons, the heart field and direct experience all work together in the empathic natural human being.
Being responsive means that one observes, takes in the information, absorbs that field of information, processes that information and generates action to deal with the situation.
The natural inclination of all living organisms is to act in ways that nurture the habitat so as to maintain the optimum conditions for life to flourish, for ALL life to flourish.
Thus the action taken is taken within that ‘ethic’. Ethic here is used as an analogy, for it is deeper than ethics, which are a human concept.
It’s important to comprehend that there exists Societal Institutionally induced conditions that create that lack of empathy, repeatedly. It’s also important to note that trauma that is unresolved can also lead to a loss of self empathy on the personal level, and on the societal level.
Lack of empathy leads to a sense of disconnection, which leads to fear (that one's natural needs will not be met) which leads to a desire to control others (to meet one's perceived needs) and it is the imposition of control that leads to violence...... because self organising nature rejects control in favour of co-operation, and this natural 'resistance' is met with violence to maintain control.
An example is the labelling of certain children as 'disruptive', the creation of spurious diagnoses and the utility of drugging those children to maintain control of the classroom. The system undermines the parents/teachers sense of empathy by enforcing certain requirements upon them, which in order to be met, require that they control the children because of fear of the repercussions. It is the fear that drives the controlling behaviour, not love. Even if it is rationalised as love, it is not love. It is not trust. It is fear.
Hunting is not the same dynamic, so don't go there.... as an attempt to suggest that adverse control is all over nature.... natural hunting exists in the context of the metabolising of materials in ways that improve the habitat for ALL Life..... everything eats.
Metabolising one's own trauma patterns will release one from the trauma cycles. However action is required to extend that further such that the Societal and Institutional trauma patterns are brought to an end.
Without that understanding, those who are engaged in activism, in protest, or in any other activity to bring change WILL be manipulated, their work will be co-opted and neutralised, and the adverse control will persist...
We see the evidence for this in Institutional 'care' systems all over the world. We see this in the 'greenwashing' PR campaigns of various polluting Corporations. The co-opting and neutralising of good ideas, of the urge to co-operate, to devolve power, is ubiquitous in any Hierarchical system of Power, and it's obvious too that being conditioned into such a system internalises that process, and it is addressing the loss of self empathy that is key to undoing those internalisations.
Do what you love, it's Your Gift to Universe