Passions are private and personal. Compassion is public and impersonal, an imbued and universal power which cannot be pluralized, commodified or run up a flag pole and saluted. It’s a love song, a gift of the heart, and it’s singing now.
If everyone seeks to be happy—through pleasure, acquisition, travel, sex, food, religion, drugs and a myriad of other means—then why is that result so seldom achieved? Why don’t we die laughing?
A scorpion asks a frog to ferry it across a river on the frog’s back. The frog hesitates, afraid of being stung, but the scorpion argues that if he did that, they would both drown. Thus persuaded, the frog agrees. Midway across the river, the scorpion stings the frog. “Why did you do that?” the frog asked. “It’s my nature,” replied the scorpion.”
This is how ego operates. It seems to make sense. But it loves death.
Ego isn’t just the Big Strut. According to the ancient enneagram, ego exhibits in nine different ways. In its most veiled manifestation, ego is shyness. Shyness courts attention in order to reject it.