Clarifying the construct of compassion : ability to downregulate emotion as a potential mediator between empathic arousal and compassion
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The association between empathy and compassion was examined in a sample of Americans aged 35 to 86, using national survey and phone interview data, biological data, and neuropsychological data. Given the postulation that empathy is a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for compassion to emerge, compassion is conceptualized here as an emergent process that is contingent upon empathic arousal. The degree to which an experience of empathic arousal translates into compassion is hypothesized to depend upon an individual's ability to downregulate the emotional response associated with empathic ...