In Against Empathy, written by Paul Bloom, he talks about empathy in a different way then you would expect. When you think about empathetic people, just as I do, you want to get close to them and even be like them. Most people look at empathetic people as very kind hearted, selfless people, but Paul Bloom questions if that is actually good. In this book, he explains that empathy is used to manipulate people everyday through important matters such as politics. In chapter 5, Bloom states “ if we were to have empathy for our enemies it would block us from hurting them.” It was very interesting to read even though it made me angry when reading it. It’s true. The world will never be fully peaceful and there will always be manipulation and tactics to control and use others. This is where empathy is not in our favor.
As someone who considers themselves to be more empathetic than most people, at first while reading this book I was taken back. I believed that the world needed more empathy in order for the world to be a better and more justiceful place, but I understand where the author is coming from. Instead of attacking empathy, while reading this book I understood that the author was trying to explain that being sympathetic is a better approach than being empathetic. When you are empathetic towards someone, scientifically you experience their pain, which in any situation helps no one. As someone who eventually wants to become a therapist, this book actually helped open my eyes to how to deal with other people's emotions and help them without getting too involved in your own mind and in their lives. Although I may not 100% agree with this book I definitely appreciate it and would recommend people to read it and get a different outlook on empathy. This book can be controversial and is meant to be read by open minded people.
Empathy can definitely be good sometimes. I went to a rescue shelter & met these two dogs who looked sad which made me sad & now they live with me!! (-: