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Love and compassion
28. November 2018 at 09:05
by Imran Ali Laulai
A world with loving, compassionate people will make for a better, caring, and encouraging society. These acts of kindness can keep yourself, help you protect other people, and boost others and one’s self confidence. Evidence from Night, Flowers For Algernon, and The Fault In Our Stars can support that love and compassion are, in fact, necessities and not luxuries.
Dalai Lama once said, “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.” This quote explains how these feelings are just apart of humanity, not inessential. This is a paramount topic because love and compassion are what is needed to get through daily life. One should take this quote seriously because these feelings can help get through life with a positive attitude that can lead to success. Using evidence from Elie Wiesel’s Night, Daniel Keyes’ Flowers for Algernon, and John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, we will understand why love and compassion are so important.

While some may believe that love is not an essential to humanity, we can see here that it is the very reason why Elie Wiesel survived. The book Night tells Elie’s personal story of going through and surviving the holocaust. A recurring theme throughout this book is love. The following quote was taken when Elie and his father were being forced to run to a new labor camp. “Death wrapped itself around me until I was stifled… The idea of dying, of no longer being began to fascinate me… My father’s presence was the only thing that stopped me… What would he do without me? I was his only support” (Wiesel, 64).

The love he had for his father was so strong that it kept him alive through his treacherous days and nights going from camp to camp. If he didn’t care for his father so much, the chances that Elie or many other holocaust survivors would still be alive are slim. Now we will look at compassion when Elie’s father has been selected to go to the crematory, and decides on giving Elie an inheritance. “‘Look, take this knife… I don’t need it any longer. It might be useful to you” . Even in what he thought was his last moments, he was not thinking about himself staying alive but rather his son. When he himself was dying, he wanted to do what he could to make sure Elie would live.


Next, we will look at quotes from the story Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes. Charlie Gordon (as a ‘genius’) has just seen a boy be laughed at and verbally bullied by men because he dropped some dishes and and is ‘mentally retarded.’ “‘Shut up! Leave him alone! He can’t help what he is! But for God’s sake… he’s still a human being!’” . Charlie stood up for him even after realizing he was laughing at the boy himself. If Charlie hadn’t had said anything, the boy would have continued to be antagonized much longer and it could have had a long term effect on him.

Previously in the book, postoperative Charlie had said he loved Miss Kinnian, his former teacher, and we see how that continues as Charlie’s brain goes back to a more pre - operation Charlie after he accidentally walked into his old classroom. “Thats why Im going back to New York for good… I dont want Miss Kinnian to feel sorry for me” Charlie felt incredibly sorry for making Miss Kinnian cry and felt so strongly about it that he decided to leave New York. People like this are needed because otherwise the world would be full of sorrow and even hatred, which would leave humanity in shambles.

Lastly, we will look at evidence from The Fault In Our Stars by John Green. In this excerpt, Hazel Grace is trying to explain why her and her love Augustus Waters should not be together. “I'm a grenade and at some point I'm going to blow up and I would like to minimize the casualties, okay?” Although this does not seem ‘compassionate,’ it is actually filled with both compassion and love. Hazel loves Augustus so much, that she’s trying to push him away so he won’t get hurt when she will inevitably die of cancer.

If people like this did not exist, hurt could overcome people resulting in a very melancholy society. Augustus Waters is talking with Hazel about why he stares at her when this quote is said, “Because you are beautiful. I enjoy looking at beautiful people, and I decided a while ago not to deny myself the simpler pleasures of existence” . Giving simple compliments like this is what keeps each other in high spirits. People can wake up feeling good and able to be successful because of how encouraged one is by only a polite compliment.

A world with loving, compassionate people will make for a better, caring, and encouraging society. These acts of kindness can keep yourself, help you protect other people, and boost others and one’s self confidence. Evidence from Night, Flowers For Algernon, and The Fault In Our Stars can support that love and compassion are, in fact, necessities and not luxuries.


Cite This Article As: Imran Ali Laulai. "Love and compassion." International Youth Journal, 28. November 2018.

Link To Article: https://youth-journal.org/love-and-compassion

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