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"We are here
— together —
in a vast universe, the full nature of which remains beyond our comprehension.

"We’re born into a world that is at once wondrous and foreboding, sustaining and dangerous, mysterious and beautiful.

"We’re capable of extraordinary achievements, profound love, and a deep delight in this world. We’re also capable of dreadful acts against nature and each other.

"In our brief visit to this astounding world, fostering the value and practice of compassion provides significance and meaning so that, at the end of our days, we can look back over the course of our lifetime and know that the world became a better place
because we were here."


From the forthcoming book: Compassion and the Alchemy of Being by Ari Cowan.
Copyright ©2023
Reproduced with permission.

Matt Collamer, Unsplash

At the center of our work is the commitment to supporting the establishment of sustainable cultures of compassion so that we can survive, thrive, and experience the limited time each of us has on the Earth.

Compassion: An Introduction

This five-minute video (below) that illustrates the nature and scope of compassion as seen by the International Center. The video is available for free use in English, French, and Greek.

View the video in English. Voir la vidéo en français Δείτε το βίντεο στα ελληνικά.
View the video in English. Voir la vidéo en français. Δείτε το βίντεο στα ελληνικά.
View Definitions Compassion is sometimes misunderstood and confused with concepts such as empathy, sympathy, and being nice. For more information about compassion and related terms, click on the button to the left.

The Need for Compassion in Challenging Times

We live in a time in human history when we face the challenges of divisiveness, rage, uncertainty, frustration, individual and broad-brush condemnation, and hopelessness. It is an era of intolerance, impatience, and self-righteous hypersensitivity. We witness the condemnation of innumerable social groups — political, ethnic, religious, geographic, ethnic, economic, occupational, philosophical, and generational.

People are exhausted. And yet, there’s hope.

We have a choice. We can either continue to shout, condemn, and rage against the inequities we encounter or we can pull together and muster the courage to take up the work of creating a more fair, just, healthy, creative, and sustainable world. Compassion provides a practical foundation for our creativity and action as we confront conditions that are threatening, harmful, and unpleasant — the difficult challenges that demand our attention.

That is the work of the International Center for Compassionate Organizations — the work of helping to create cultures of compassion.

Our approach follows two complementary tracks:
  1. Supporting cultures of compassion.
  2. Applying compassionate approaches to resolving conflict.

Our Work

Our work consists of providing:

  • Public information and resources about compassion and its applications.
  • Effective skill-based, practical training programs for organizations worldwide.
  • Advisory services for organizations throughout the world that are working to reduce suffering and improving outcomes within their organizations, in their communities, and among those they serve.

For more information, please contact the International Center.

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  The International Center for Compassionate Organizations is a nonprofit, public health, and public service organization
working to foster the value and practice of compassion in organizations worldwide.
Copyright ©2023 by the International Center for Compassionate Organizations. All rights reserved.