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[ Also see Affection Comfort Companionship Compassion Concern Consolation Electricity Encouragement Feeling Friends Friendship Help Humanity Influence Kindness Philanthropy Pity Sensibility Sorrow Suffering Tears Tenderness ]

A brother's sufferings claim a brother's pity.
      - Joseph Addison

Sympathy wanting, all is wanting; its personal magnetism is the conductor of the sacred spark that lights our atoms, puts us m human communion, and gives us to company, conversation, and ourselves.
      - Amos Bronson Alcott

Strengthen me by sympathizing with my strength not my weakness.
      - Amos Bronson Alcott, Table-Talk--Sympathy

Pity and need
  Make all flesh kin. There in no caste in blood.
      - Sir Edwin Arnold, Light of Asia
         (bk. VI, l. 73)

Man is one; and he hath one great heart. It is thus we feel, with a gigantic throb athwart the sea, each other's rights and wrongs; thus are we men.
      - Philip James Bailey

True sympathy is putting ourselves in another's place; and we are moved in proportion to the reality of our imagination.
      - Hosea Ballou

Nature has concatenated our fortunes and affections together with indissoluble bands of mutual sympathy.
      - Isaac Barrow

Terrorists intent on damaging the United States need not fly planes into America's buildings; they need only do something to raise the price of oil.
      - Ricardo Bayon,
        in The Atlantic, January/February, 2003

Let us cherish sympathy. By attention and exercise it may be improved in every man. It prepares the mind for receiving the impressions of virtue; and without it there can be no true politeness. Nothing is more odious than that insensibility which wraps a man up in himself and his own concerns, and prevents his being moved with either the joys or the sorrows of another.
      - James Beattie

A helping word to one in trouble is often like a switch on a railroad track,--but one inch between wreck and smooth-rolling prosperity.
      - Henry Ward Beecher

Happy is the man who has that in his soul which acts upon the dejected as April airs upon violet roots. Gifts from the hand are silver and gold, but the heart gives that which neither silver nor gold can buy. To be full of goodness, full of cheerfulness, full of sympathy, full of helpful hope, causes a man to carry blessings of which he is himself as unconscious as a lamp is of its own shining. Such a one moves on human life as stars move on dark seas to bewildered mariners; as the sun wheels, bringing all the seasons with him from the south.
      - Henry Ward Beecher

When a man can look upon the simple wild-rose, and feel no pleasure, his taste has been corrupted.
      - Henry Ward Beecher

But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?
      - Bible, I John (ch. III, v. 17)

Graceful, particularly in youth, is the tear of sympathy, and the heart that melts at the tale of woe; we should not permit ease and indulgence to contract our affections, and wrap us up in selfish enjoyment. But we should accustom ourselves to think of the distresses of human life, of the solitary cottage, the dying parent, and the weeping orphan. Nor ought we ever to sport with pain and distress in any of our amusements, or treat even the meanest insect with wanton cruelty.
      - Hugh Blair

At a certain depth all bosoms communicate, all hearts are one.
      - Fredrika Bremer

But there is one thing which we are responsible for, and that is for our sympathies, for the manner in which we regard it, and for the tone in which we discuss it. What shall we say, then, with regard to it? On which side shall we stand?
      - John Bright,
        Speech on Slavery and Secession

It may, indeed, be said that sympathy exists in all minds, as Faraday has discovered that magnetism exists in all metals; but a certain temperature is required to develop the hidden property, whether in the metal or the mind.
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton

Of all the virtues necessary to the completion of the perfect man, there is none to be more delicately implied and less ostentatiously vaunted than that of exquisite feeling or universal benevolence.
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton

It is by sympathy we enter into the concerns of others, that we are moved as they are moved, and are never suffered to be indifferent spectators of almost anything which men can do or suffer. For sympathy may be considered as a sort of substitution, by which we are put into the place of another man, and affected in many respects as he is affected.
      - Edmund Burke

Next to love, sympathy is the divinest passion of the human heart.
      - Edmund Burke

Outward things don't give; they draw out. You find in them what you bring to them. A cathedral makes only the devotional feel devotional; scenery refines only the fine-minded.
      - Charles Buxton

There's nought in this bad world like sympathy:
  'Tis so becoming to the soul and face--
    Sets to soft music the harmonious sigh,
      And robes sweet friendship in a Brussels lace.
      - Lord Byron (George Gordon Noel Byron)

In the desert a fountain is springing,
  In the wide waste there still is a tree,
    And a bird in the solitude singing,
      Which speaks to my spirit of thee.
      - Lord Byron (George Gordon Noel Byron),
        Stanzas to Augusta

Of a truth, men are mystically united: a mystic bond of brotherhood makes all men one.
      - Thomas Carlyle, Essays--Goethe's Works

Public feeling now is apt to side with the persecuted, and our modern martyr is full as likely to be smothered with roses as with coals.
      - Edwin Hubbell Chapin

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