A Tiny Story About Compassion

No act of violence is as strong as an act of compassion.

I found the words recently on a slip of paper that had fallen between my driver and passenger seats. I didn’t recall writing them, so it must have quite awhile ago that, while driving, I pulled to the side of the road and wrote down words I had just heard either on a CD story I was listening to or an NPR radio show, words that had reached in and touched me so deeply I didn’t want to forget them.

Because I’m a writer, I always record where a quote came from. On this note to myself, I had written beneath the quote, “Co Springs.” The words make no sense to me today as a quote source. If you know whose words these are, I’d be pleased if you would kindly let me know so I can credit that wise person.

No act of violence is as strong as an act of compassion.

So powerful to ponder.

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Addendum: My friend, Lynn Foster, emailed me tonight to give me the link to this quote. It’s here: https://prh.org/physicians-statement-on-planned…/ This was a statement made by the physicians of Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs on 11-28-2015 following the vicious attack at the clinic that killed three people and wounded nine. The words are so powerful and poignant and true, I believe. The entire statement is so worth reading in full. Lynn, thank you so much.


About Mary Jo Doig

At the turn of the millennium, I arrived at a cross-road that brought me to a splendid, if unforeseen place, almost as if I were a traveler on Robert Frost's The Road Less Traveled. I was single again, my three children were grown and building their lives, I'd experienced a health issue and was working on an improved lifestyle. I also ached to do two other things: (1) change my long human services career in upstate New York's Catskill Mountains, where winter seemed to be at least seven months out of every year, and (2) move to a warmer place in the universe. My decision: did I want to continue on the path I'd been following pretty much all my life, or could I gather my then-fragile courage and start life brand new somewhere else? These were scary thoughts for a single woman in her late 50s. Five hundred miles away, though, I fell in love with a new mountain range, Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains, where I knew not a soul except my daughter who was attending college in the Shenandoah Valley, and I moved. I rented a tiny cabin on a mountain in the woods and lived there in solitude for two years, working in a new career by day and, when home, communing with the incredible natural beauty that surrounded me. There I also began to write my life stories, which were aching for release. I joined the Story Circle Network in early 2001, a rich place in cyberspace for women life writers, where I strengthened my written voice and began sharing my stories. I found so many opportunities to grow: 10 year facilitator for an online writing circle of women writers across the country; thirteen year editor of the "True Words from Real Women" section of the quarterly Journal; a reader and reviewer of women's memoirs for the SCN Book Review site; program chair for two Stories from the Heart national conferences in Austin, T. Presently I'm teaching Women's Life-Writing and Older Women's Legacy workshops in my part of the world in Central Virginia and facilitating the ongoing Circle of Memories Writing Circle (formerly an OWL workshop that continued on) at the Crozet Public Library. I am blessed with three wonderful children, a son and two daughters; a small, huge-hearted family; dear friends; my beagle Addie and cat Button. My hobbies include reading, writing, editing, cooking, gardening, quilting, knitting, biking, and simply being with the profound beauty of the mountains that embrace my small two acres in the Blue Ridge. The life stories I began writing in 2001 have grown deeper with time, re-writes, and personal growth. All these years later, I'm scheduled to publish my memoir, Stitching a Patchwork Life, in 2018.
This entry was posted in Compassion, Kindness, Quotes. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A Tiny Story About Compassion

  1. Great post. Thank you for sharing your “saved wisdom”.
    I’ve heard this before, and I’m thinking it may have been quoted by an NPR reporter in connection with the Colorado Springs Abortion Center violence. Don’t know who said it originally, though.


  2. Mary Jo Doig says:

    Yes, you’re right, Jazz. My friend Lynn traced it down and if you go to the revised post on maryjod.wordpress,com, the link is there now as an addendum. I did hear it on NPR and the link will take you to the operating doctors’ statement the day after the horrific attack at the Planned Parenthood facility there. Definitely worth reading. Thanks for the visit and your thoughts.


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